Hearing Requests

Revised May 22, 2023

DSHS Hearing Rules are found in chapter 388-02 WAC

Clarifying Information:

  1. The client or their representative may request an administrative hearing. The request should be made within in 90 days of the date of the notice of the department decision. After 90 days, a hearing request may only be accepted after an ALJ determines there was good cause for not requesting the hearing within 90 days.
  2. Hearing requests don’t need to be in any particular form and can be made to any department employee or the Office of Administrative Hearings OAH.   Note: Provider hearing requests must be made in writing and submitted to the Office of Financial Recovery (OFR).
  3. Hearing requests can be made by:
       a. Calling the Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS) at (877) 501-2233 or the OAH Call Center at (800) 583-8271;
       b. Writing to:
               Office of Administrative Hearings
               PO Box 42489
               Olympia, WA 98504-2489
       c. Requesting online at the OAH Website, https://oah.wa.gov, then click the How do I Request a hearing link to get started;
       d. Faxing your request to OAH at (360) 664-8721; or
       e. Visiting any DSHS office and making an oral request, completing a Request for Hearing form, or providing 
           any other written statement for a hearing. 
  4. Hearing requests should include the department decision being appealed, the date the client was notified of the department decision, and why the client is dissatisfied with the department decision.
  5. Any communication with the department indicating dissatisfaction with a department decision should be treated as a hearing request.
  6. Hearing requests must be forwarded to the (OAH) for scheduling regardless of the date of the hearing request. See RCW 74.08.080

Public Benefits Specialist/Case Manager Responsibilities:

  1. Respond to the client and document in the ACES narrative when a client contacts the department regarding an adverse department decision.
  2. Explain the reasons for the department decision.
  3. Describe what rules apply to the department decision.
  4. Try to resolve the issue(s) with the client, but, if unable to resolve the issue(s) offer the client a supervisor conference, if appropriate.
  5. Inform the client of their right to an administrative hearing.
  6. Offer a Request for Hearing, DSHS 5-013(X) or take request over the phone
  7. Offer to complete an electronic Administrative Hearing Request form for the customer or provide the paper Request for Hearing form DSHS 5-013(X), if the the client prefers. Document the client's decision in ACES. 

Administrative Hearing Coordinator (AHC) Responsibilities:

  1. Maintain record of all hearing requests until scheduled.
  2. Contact client to clarify the hearing request, if necessary.
  3. Forward all hearing requests to the OAH for scheduling. 
    • If the client is Equal Access, include a copy of Accommodation plan with the hearing request.
    • If the client is Limited English Proficiency, include primary language information with the hearing request.
  4.  Document the receipt of a hearing request in ACES narrative.