WorkFirst is Washington State’s welfare-to-work strategy. It is based on the belief that everyone has abilities needed in today’s workforce, and those who can work should. Washington initiated the WorkFirst program in August 1997 to help low-income families become self-sufficient by providing training and support services necessary for parents to get a job, keep a job and move up a career ladder.
Under WorkFirst, welfare assistance in Washington State is no longer an entitlement. Cash assistance is limited to a maximum of 60 months (five years) in a person’s lifetime. During that time, the person must be involved in the WorkFirst program and working or actively looking for a job. However, benefits may be extended beyond 5 years for parents who continue to abide by the rules and seek work. Adults who are unable to participate will continue to receive assistance.

How to Apply for Welfare in Washington:

To apply you must submit your application online. Click here to apply


Click here to use the online screening tool to check if you are eligible to receive benefits

More Information:

To read more about the Washington WorkFirst program, visit the website or you can contact WorkFirst program representatives at