Disputing A Bill

An owner or occupant may challenge the most recent charges assessed by DC Water for water, sewer and groundwater sewer service by either: (a) Paying the current charges in the bill and notifying DC Water in writing, within twenty (20) calendar days after the bill date, the reason(s) why the bill is believed to be incorrect and that the bill is being paid under protest; or (b) Not paying the current charges in the bill and notifying DC Water in writing, within twenty (20)  calendar days after the bill date, the reason(s) why the bill is believed to be incorrect.

Challenges received after the twenty (20) day period as stated in § 402.1 will be deemed to have been filed in an untimely manner and will not stop the imposition of a penalty for nonpayment of charges or the possibility of termination of service for nonpayment.

DC Water will investigate a challenged water, sewer or groundwater bill. If the bill is not paid, but a challenge is made within twenty (20) calendar days after the bill date, DC Water will suspend an owner or occupant's obligation to pay the disputed bill until he/she has been provided a written decision of the results of the investigation. DC Water's written decision will include the date that the bill should be paid.

If it is determined that the bill is erroneous, DC Water shall adjust the bill accordingly and at the owner’s / occupant’s request, refund any overcharges paid. If the owner/occupant is not satisfied with DC Water's decision, then he/she may request in writing an administrative hearing within fifteen (15) calendar days of the date of the decision. The owner or occupant is not relieved of the responsibility for paying all previously or subsequently rendered, uncontested water, sewer and groundwater service charges, penalties, interest, and administrative costs.

Mail / Email your dispute letter to:

District of Columbia Water and Sewer Authority   
Attn: Customer Service Department   
1385 Canal St SE   
Washington, DC 20003


Please do not include a letter with your bill and payment since this will slow down the payment process and keep us from resolving your issue quickly.

You can also now dispute a bill online. Click on the button below to connect to the dispute form.

Bill Dispute Form

We look forward to resolving your billing issue.

Administrative Hearing Procedure

DC Water will notify you in writing of our findings relative to your disputed bill. If you are not satisfied with the findings, you may appeal DC Water's decision by filing a request for an Administrative Hearing. We will include information about how to file this request, and the form (Administrative Hearing Petition), with our notification letter of findings. Your request for a hearing must be made within 15 days of the mailing of the notification letter.

The hearing is administered by a neutral third party, an Administrative Hearing Officer. At the hearing, both DC Water's representative and you will be able to present your case to the Administrative Hearing Officer. In most instances, the Administrative Hearing Officer will render a decision within 30 days of the close of the hearing. An adjustment to the bill in accordance with the ruling will be made. The adjusted bill is due within 30 days of the ruling. If you disagree with the ruling of the Administrative Hearing Officer, you may appeal to the District of Columbia Court of Appeals pursuant to its Rules of Procedure.

While awaiting the hearing date, DC Water does not ask for payment of the disputed bill, your water service remains intact, and you do not incur late penalties, fines or interest on the disputed bill. Please be advised that your request for a hearing does not constitute a challenge of any future bills or the past bills. All bills that are not awaiting an investigation or an administrative hearing must be paid by their respective due dates.

Administrative Hearing Outcomes - Decisions are rendered every other month and posted quarterly.

Related Information

Below are summarizes of the customer inquiries escalated to a manager in Customer Service or received through other departments and sources.

Customer Bill of Rights

Submit Bill Dispute (Online Dispute Form)

FY 2020 Customer Inquiries (to date)

FY 2019 Customer Inquiries

FY 2018 Customer Inquiries


Forfeiture Questions

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