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Administrative Law Judge

Administrative Law Judge - Temporary Appointment


This recruitment will be used to fill full-time temporary Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) positions to address the increased volume of Employment Security cases in our Olympia, Spokane Valley, and Tacoma field offices.


The next round of interviews are anticipated to occur in late March and early April 2021.

Start dates may begin as early as May 17, 2021



The Opportunity:
OAH is currently looking to fill multiple temporary Line Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) positions to address the Employment Security (ES) Unemployment Insurance Caseload backlog.

  • The initial temporary appointment will be for approximately 6 months with the ability to extend to 12 months or longer.
  • This position will be teleworking fulltime.
  • The first day of employment will be spent at an OAH facility.
  • Employees at the facility are expected to follow COVID-19 safety protocols, which includes social distancing and wearing a cloth face covering when not working alone.


About OAH:
The 1981 Legislature created OAH to offer Washingtonians an independent, fair and neutral forum to hold administrative hearings on disputed matters referred by state and local government agencies.  Operating out of field offices in Olympia, Tacoma, Seattle, and Spokane Valley there are approximately 100 Administrative Law Judges at OAH who preside over administrative hearings involving unemployment insurance benefits, child support, food assistance, medical benefits, business and professional licensing, and more.  Our referring agencies include the Employment Security Department (ESD), Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS), Department of Children, Youth, and Families (DCYF), Health Care Authority (HCA), Liquor and Cannabis Board (LCB), Department of Financial Institutions (DFI), the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI), and others. For more information about OAH, please visit our website at

Mission: We independently resolve administrative disputes through accessible, fair, prompt processes and issue sound decisions.

Vision: OAH offers the people of Washington a convenient, easy to navigate system to request and receive fair and impartial hearings on their appeals of government actions. OAH is the preferred neutral forum for Washingtonians to resolve their disputes with state and local government agencies.

Values: Public service, respect, integrity, communications, employees.


  • Performance excellence: We deliver high quality, timely work.
  • Convenience & accessibility: We make it easy for people to do business with us.
  • Independence & impartiality: We inspire public confidence in administrative decision making.
  • Proficient & engaged employees: We develop skilled, dedicated employees.


OAH Offers:

  • Opportunity to serve as an independent, neutral, and impartial decision maker.
  • Satisfaction of knowing your work makes a difference.
  • Free CLE credits through comprehensive in-house trainings.
  • Comprehensive benefits package.


Position Overview:
Our ALJs mainly preside over telephonic hearings but will also conduct in-person hearings for both pro se and represented parties. ALJs work in a fast-paced, timeline driven environment where they are at the forefront of accomplishing the OAH mission. ALJs enjoy seeing the direct result of their work and the justice provided in each decision made. An ALJ's primary role is to conduct hearings that are fair--in both substance and appearance--and issue well-reasoned, timely decisions. This role demands the ability to build a record; manage time effectively; and produce clear, logical, well-written decisions. As a representative of the State of Washington, each ALJ is held to the highest standard of professionalism, performance excellence, and ethics.

The Caseload

Employment Security (ES): The ES caseload handles a high volume of cases with quick turnaround times for orders. A typical hearing is scheduled for about one hour and a fully trained judge is typically scheduled for 24 hearings a week. ALJs on this caseload hear cases involving unemployment insurance, unemployment fraud, training benefits, and unemployment tax assessments..

Some of what you'll do:

  • Provide high quality and timely administrative hearings and decisions under Chapter 34.05 RCW and other applicable laws consistent with the requirements of due process.
  • Conduct fair, impartial hearings accessible for all parties. ES hearings are almost exclusively conducted over the phone.
  • Become proficient in using our case management system to manage your caseload.
  • Ensure a clear and complete hearing record.
  • Preside and rule on pre-hearing, hearing, and post-hearing matters.
  • Read or view exhibits, pleadings, and legal reference materials to prepare for proceedings.
  • Swear in witnesses, take testimony, and rule on exhibits. Determine the relevancy of testimony as it is occurring; rule on admissibility of evidence.
  • Maintain control of the hearing, which may include parties who are upset or are having difficulty understanding the proceeding.
  • Analyze legal problems, some of which may be difficult and complex; and apply legal principles and precedents with a commitment to making an unbiased and legally correct decision.
  • Issue well-written decisions consistent with OAH quality standards, containing necessary findings of fact and conclusions of law disposing of all legal issues.
  • Issue decisions within strict timelines required by OAH standards and the governing federal and state law.
  • Develop and maintain current and accurate knowledge of administrative rules, policies and procedures, and other substantive law for caseloads.
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