WSDA Sues Board of Denturists

WSDA filed a legal action against the Washington State Board of Denturists challenging an administrative rule allowing licensed denturists to place prefabricated abutments.

WSDA has filed a legal action in Thurston County Superior Court against the Washington State Board of Denturists, challenging an administrative rule they passed which went into effect in January 2024.

The rule allows licensed denturists to place prefabricated abutments. Our filing makes the following three arguments:

  1. In both legal terms and common language usage, a prefabricated abutment does not meet the definition of a removable dental appliance, which is a statutory limit on the denturist scope of practice. WSDA believes that the rule effectively represents an illegal expansion of denturists’ scope of practice. The Legislature has the sole authority to define a health care provider’s approved scope, so WSDA contends that the Board of Denturists had no authority to adopt this rule.
  2. WSDA believes denturists do not have sufficient training to deal with the range of potential complications with this treatment, which puts patients at risk.
  3. The Board of Denturists failed to comply with state rulemaking procedures, including not demonstrating the clear need for the rule, not circulating or holding additional public hearings following a change in the proposed rule language, and violating other requirements of both the Administrative Procedures Act and the Regulatory Fairness Act.

Legal actions are not something we enter into lightly. Throughout the Board of Denturists’ rulemaking process, WSDA joined DQAC, the Washington State Society of Prosthodontists, and other oral health professionals in raising concerns regarding the proposed rule. These concerns were largely ignored. So, in order to protect patients, the WSDA Board agreed to take this action. We will keep you posted on the progress of the suit.

A copy of the filing can be found here.

If you have any questions about this issue, please contact WSDA Executive Director Bracken Killpack at

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Washington Denturist Association

5727 Baker Way, NW Suite 200 | Gig Harbor, WA 98332