Board of Appeals

The Board of Appeals reviews administrative hearing decisions issued by Administrative Law Judges at the Office of Administrative Hearings.

BOA Review Judges are attorneys who review hearing decisions for legal and factual errors, change the decisions as necessary, and then issue final decisions on behalf of the Secretary of the Department of Social and Health Services. All BOA Review Judges are members of the Washington State Bar Association.
BOA Review Judges fulfill the agency’s mission by issuing timely and sound decisions, ensuring those who are entitled to benefits receive them, and those who are not entitled to benefits are prevented from receiving unjust enrichment at public expense. Some decisions and orders may result in placing individuals on registries or revoking licenses due to findings of abuse, neglect, and/or exploitation that prevent further harm to vulnerable adults.
BOA is a department liaison to the Office of Administrative Hearings and formulates department-wide rules and policies on hearings. BOA maintains the department's official record for each adjudication, ensures that legal notices are prepared and processed to meet legal requirements for cases being reviewed, receives petitions for judicial review, and files hearing records with superior court. BOA Review Judges also provide information and training on the department's hearing practices.

Decision Process


Once an Administrative Law Judge issues an administrative hearing decision in select program areas, either party may request review at the Board of Appeals. See WAC 388-02-0560 for complete instructions.
See WAC 388-02-0217 for a complete list of programs currently reviewed by BOA.


Once a Department Review Judge has issued a final decision in select program areas (WAC 388-02-0217), either party may request a reconsideration of the final decision. See WAC 388-02-0605 for complete instructions.

Judicial review

Judicial review is the process of appealing a final department review decision to superior court. This option is not available to department representatives. See WAC 388-02-0640 for complete instructions. Please contact your local superior court clerk's office or visit Washington Courts for more information.


Contact Board of Appeals

Mailing Address:

Board of Appeals
PO Box 45803
Olympia, WA 98504-5803

Physical Location:
1115 Washington ST SE
Olympia, WA 98504-5803

(877) 351-0002 or (360) 664-6100

(360) 664-6187

To view a list of BOA decisions, please visit Decision List.

The former Children's Administration  is now part of the Department of Children, Youth, and Families  and the former Division of Behavioral Health and Recovery (DBHR) is now part of the Health Care Authority . Department of Social and Health Services Index of Significant Decisions content that previously included these agencies is no longer available. Please contact DCYF and HCA for further information.