Information about Letters

Revised July 16, 2020


WAC 388-458-0002 The department of social and health services (DSHS) sends you letters to tell you about your case. 

WAC 388-458-0011 DSHS sends you a denial letter when you can't get benefits. 

WAC 388-458-0016 DSHS sends you an approval letter when you can get benefits

WAC 388-458-0020 You get a request letter when we need more information. 

WAC 388-458-0025  We send you a change letter if the amount of benefits you are getting is changing. 

WAC 388-458-0030  We send you a termination letter when your benefits stop. 

WAC 388-458-0035 Why do you give me ten days notice before you reduce or stop my benefits?

WAC 388-458-0040   What happens if I ask for a fair hearing before the change happens?

Clarifying Information - WAC 388-458-0002

Letters are sent to clients in their primary language. ACES supports eight languages besides English:

  • Cambodian
  • Chinese
  • Korean
  • Laotian
  • Russian
  • Spanish
  • Vietnamese
  • Somali

Worker Responsibilities - WAC 388-458-0002

When sending letters to the client, use the client’s current mailing address. If the client did not provide a current mailing address on the application, send the letter to the last known address.



This internal DSHS website can only be accessed by DSHS staff or persons who have been authorized by the department.

Clarifying Information - WAC 388-458-0011

  • See APPLICATIONS for the timeframes to process the application.

Clarifying Information - WAC 388-458-0016

  • EBT information is included on this letter. See BENEFIT ISSUANCES for information about EBT.

Worker Responsibilities - WAC 388-458-0016

  • If you are approving more than one type of assistance on the same letter, list the type and benefit amount for each type of assistance separately. Do not combine or list amounts without a program reference.

Clarifying Information - WAC 388-458-0020

  1. Information or action needed depends on the type of assistance.
  2. Additional rules about providing information or taking required action is found in APPLICATIONS and VERIFICATION.
  3. If the client provides the information or takes the action within the 10-day notice period:
    1. Continue benefits at the same amount if the action or information does not result in a reduction of benefits.
    2. Treat the information or action as a newly reported change if it causes a reduction in benefits.
  4. See VERIFICATION for information about paying for requested information.

Worker Responsibilities - WAC 388-458-0020

  1. If you are requesting information for more than one type of assistance, tell the client what is needed for each program. For example, you are pending an application for TANF and Basic Food. You need verification of income for both programs, AP forms for TANF, and verification of rent for Basic Food. Specify this on the letter.
  2. Give examples of the types of verification the client can get. For example, if you need verification of the client's wages, tell them on the letter that they can give you copies of their check stubs or a statement from their employer.
  3. If the client provides the information within the 10-day advance period, treat it as newly reported change. See CHANGES OF CIRCUMSTANCES to determine if the change was reported timely and the correct effective date.
  4. Make sure the client has a supply of return envelopes.
  5. If the due date falls on a weekend or holiday, change the due date on the letter to the next business day.

Clarifying Information - WAC 388-458-0025

  • If you don’t have time to give 10-day notice as needed, the change is effective the month following. To determine if the client has an overpayment, see effective dates in CHANGE OF CIRCUMSTANCES.

Worker Responsibilities - WAC 388-458-0025

  • If a client is NSA, follow their accommodation plan and the procedures in NSA before reducing or stopping benefits.

Clarifying information - WAC 388-458-0030

Clarifying information - WAC 388-458-0040

  • When clients request a fair hearing within the ten-day notice period, they are automatically given continued benefits unless they tell us that they do not want them.


  • See ACES Letters.