6100. Client and Staff Travel

Approval: Jennifer Strus, Asst. Secretary

Effective Date:

Revised Date: June 12, 2014

Sunset Review: June 2018


Authorize (in state or out of state) travel in order to know the whereabouts of all children in the care and custody of the Department. Provide fiscal responsibility and consistency in travel payment approval for children/youth, caregivers and employees.


RCW 74.13.710

RCW 74.15.030


  1. Travel must comply with court orders, DSHS 19.10 Travel Policy & OFM 10.10 Travel Policy.
  2. Travel related to children or youth who are in the care, custody and control of the Department, must be:
    1. Documented prior to the travel
    2. Approved prior to any travel over 72 hours.
  3. Caregivers have the authority to allow a child in their care to participate in normal childhood activities without the prior approval of the CA worker or the court. Normal childhood activities are based on a reasonable and prudent parent standard.
  4. All children being placed out of state through ICPC must be approved by the Regional Administrator and documented prior to travel.
  5. Any travel (in state and out of state) with costs to the State above the amount designated in the Travel Approval Quick Reference Guide (outside of routine bus travel/commuter travel) must be approved by the Regional Administrator or designee regardless of required travel approval level.


  1. Child/Client Travel

    CA Staff will:

    1. Ask caregivers to notify them of travel and initiate the approval process at least three weeks in advance of travel, when possible. Trips that meet the prudent parent standard and are less than 72 hours in duration do not require CA approval.

      Note: Notification may be in the form of phone or voicemail message, face to face communication, e-mail or other written communication.

    2. Document caregiver's notification of travel in a case note in FamLink prior to travel and no later than 10 days after notification.
    3. Follow approval and documentation requirements outlined in the Travel Approval Quick Reference Guide.
    4. Complete, in detail, DSHS 03-478 CA Travel Authorization Form when required
    5. Notify parent(s) as soon as possible upon receipt of caregiver notification of travel over 72 hours.
    6. Document efforts to notify parent(s) or obtain parent approval on the DSHS 03-478 CA Travel Authorization Form or in a case note when required.
    7. Scan and upload documents approved by the parents into FamLink. (Excludes legally free children or youth.)
    8. Scan and upload approved DSHS 03-478 CA Travel Authorization Form into FamLink.
    9. Obtain court order in the following situations:
      1. For all out of country travel (Travel to the British Columbia (BC) territories of BC Rockies, Thompson/Okanogan and Vancouver Coast and Mountains are considered 'border counties' to Washington State. All territories beyond are considered out of country travel.); or
      2. When travel is inconsistent with an existing order.
    10. Coordinate out of country travel per 4211 Notification to Foreign Consulate policy if the child is a citizen of another country. (Requirements vary by country)
  2. Employee-Client Related Travel (out of state) must align with DSHS 19.10 Travel Policy & OFM 10.10 Travel Policy and must be:
    1. Directly work related;
    2. Obtained at the most economical price;
    3. Critical and necessary for state business;
    4. Pre-approved.

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