Dispute Resolving Board (DRB) Review

If you have not paid your bill in full and believe that you are entitled to a reduction in charges, first discuss your concerns with WSSC staff.  WSSC’s Customer Service Center is available Monday through Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. at 301-206-4001, or toll free at 1-800-634-8400. After our staff explains the billing, if you are still dissatisfied, you may begin the DRB process by submitting a DRB Review Request Form.

Once we receive your completed form, WSSC will begin preparing your case for the DRB’s review. This in-depth process can take

several months depending on the volume of disputes received and the complexity of the issues(s). All disputes are investigated in the order in which they are received. Once our investigation is completed, you will receive a letter in the mail containing the DRB’s decision or will be contacted to schedule a hearing.

The DRB is comprised of two customer members and one employee member. The DRB customer members are customers, unaffiliated with management or staff of the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission (WSSC), who volunteer their time to review concerns involving unpaid bills. The employee member does not work in the Customer Service Department or the Utility Services Team.

The DRB process is the final appeal for the unpaid disputed portion of a bill(s). However, please be aware that there is no guarantee the Board will decide to hear your case. After evaluating the facts, the DRB may:

  1. Grant relief without a hearing
    If the board decides to grant relief without a hearing, you will be notified in writing and receive an adjusted bill within two weeks of the Board’s meeting date.
     
  2. Schedule a hearing
    Hearings are held in the Richard Hocevar Building (14501 Sweitzer Lane, Laurel, Maryland) on weekday evenings. You will have approximately 10 minutes to address the Board. You are welcome to attend the hearing via telephone conference. If the Board decides to grant relief, you will be notified in writing and receive an adjusted bill within two weeks of the Board’s meeting date.
     
  3. Offer no relief and grant no hearing
    If you are not granted a hearing, you will be notified in writing that your bill will stand as rendered and must be paid by the date indicated.

The Board’s decision is always final. The DRB will not review accounts more than once for the same billing concern. However, once the charges are paid, you may request a Refund Hearing. Refund Hearings are our forum for disputed bills that have been paid. Unlike DRB requests, all Refund Hearing requests are guaranteed a hearing.

Before submitting your DRB Review Request Form, it is important to note the following:

  • You must appeal the disputed charges within 60 days of the meter reading date upon which the bill was based.
  • Please thoroughly explain your reason for disputing the bill(s) and include all information/documentation pertinent to your dispute, include plumber’s repair invoices and inspection reports. 
  • WSSC staff cannot complete the request form on your behalf, interpret your dispute, or calculate your disputed/undisputed amount.
  • Incomplete forms will be returned immediately without review.
  • You must pay all undisputed charges by the bill payment due date

Please complete and submit your DRB Review Request Form, along with a payment for the undisputed portion of your bill(s), via mail to WSSC’s Customer Service Department, 14501 Sweitzer Lane, Laurel, MD, 20707; via fax to 301-206-7013; or via email to cust-services@wsscwater.com.

WSSC’s Code of Regulations for Resolving Customer Unpaid Bill Complaints

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