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How to Prepare
Child Support Hearings


Preparation for hearing:

How do I prepare?


You will receive a pre-hearing letter, an exhibit packet, and a Notice of Hearing. Read these documents carefully. You should have these documents with you during the hearing. If you need your Notice of hearing translated please call OAH.


If you have more documents you want the judge to see you must immediately mail them to OAH, DCS and any other party. If you do not have the other party’s address please contact DCS or OAH. Put your DCS case number on the documents so they are associated with your file. If the document contains information you do not want the other parties to know you must black it out before mailing them. Do not wait to submit your documents. If you do not follow these instructions, your documents may not be considered.


Examples of documents you may want the judge to see:

If you have an address or phone number change, contact OAH and DCS immediately so you can continue to receive important information.  


How do I participate?


Your hearing will be held by telephone.  Your Notice of Hearing will have detailed instructions on how to participate. Before the hearing, you must call OAH to provide a telephone number where you can be reached for the hearing.  The DCS Representative will call you on the date and time of the hearing. 

If you want an in-person hearing and you have a good reason, you must submit a request to OAH.  The judge will approve or deny your request.  If your request is granted, the hearing will be scheduled at a location near you where the judge will also appear in person. The other parties are not required to appear in person.


How do I research the law?


OAH cannot provide legal advice.  If you would like to research the law, here are links to some resources.


Resource Phone Number Website


Washington Law Help


  1. In King County
  2. Outside King County


Call 211

Call 888-201-1014

Veteran’s Project



WA State Bar Association

Moderate Means Program



Division of Child Support

Find Law


Administrative Hearing Rules

WAC 388-02


Child Support Rules

WAC 388-14A

RCW Title 26


What if I want to settle my case?

You should contact the DCS Representative if you would like to try to settle your case before the hearing.



Additional Information

Washington State Office of Administrative Hearings | Build Version: 1.04c