Washington Administrative Law Research

Updated Sept. 2, 2010.
Prepared by Cheryl Nyberg; updated by Tania Schriwer, Law Librarianship Intern.

Administrative law consists of rules, regulations, decisions, and guidance documents issued by executive branch agencies, boards, commissions, departments, and offices. These agencies are generally created by statute.

Note: LexisNexis and Westlaw are available only to users with individual IDs and passwords.

For information on federal administrative law, see the Gallagher guide on U.S. Administrative Law Research.

Rules & Regulations

Washington Administrative Code (WAC)
KFW34.5 .W37. Current edition at Reference Area; previous editions at Classified Stacks
Contains the current and permanent rules and regulations of state agencies. Arranged by agency. Published every two years, with a supplement in the off-year. Updated by the Washington State Register.


Washington State Legislature, current edition LegalWA.org, current edition



Washington State Register. KFW36. Current issues at Reference Area; earlier issues at Classified Stacks
Contains the proposed, emergency, and permanently adopted rules of state agencies, as well as governor’s executive orders and notices of public meetings. Published every two weeks. The Semi-Annual Rules Agenda, published at the end of January and July contains agency plans for current and future rule-making.


Washington State Legislature LexisNexis Westlaw
  • WA-REGTXT, full text of proposed and recently adopted rules and regulations
  • WA-REGTRK, tracking information for proposed and recently adopted rules and regulations


Updating Regulations in Print

  1. Note the coverage date on the cover of the Washington Administrative Code volume.
  2. Consult the supplement, if any.
  3. Consult the table of WAC sections affected in the latest issue of the Washington State Register.


Directories & Guides

Washington State Yearbook, annual
JK9230.W38 at Reference Area & Reference Office, current edition; Classified Stacks, previous editions

Washington Administrative Law Practice Manual
KFW440.W36 1991 at Reference Area
LexisNexis: Washington Administrative Law Practice Manual

Washington Legal Researcher's Deskbook 3d, especially pages 64-69 (on rules and regulations) and pages 135-54 (on administrative agency decisions).
KFW75.W37 2002 at Reference Area & Reference Office

Access Washington, Agencies and Departments links to agency websites.


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