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An appeal is your written notice that you disagree with a Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) decision and want your case decided through the appeal process. Only the employer may appeal a TWC child labor law decision. An employer may appeal the occurrence of the violation, the amount of the penalty, or both. State law gives TWC sole authority in disputed child labor complaints. No other state agency or official can affect the outcome of an appeal. To participate in an appeal, you must meet appeal deadlines.

The appeal process is structured so that you do not need an attorney. You may choose to have an attorney or other person represent you at your own expense.

Appealing a Child Labor Law Decision

There are three levels of appeal. You start with the first level, and if you disagree with that decision, you may proceed to the next level.

  1. Appeal to the Appeal Tribunal
  2. Appeal to the Commission
  3. Motion for Rehearing or Appeal to a Civil Court

The first step in the appeals process is an appeal to the Appeal Tribunal. The first appeal may be a telephone hearing, except when a sign-language interpreter is required, then the hearing may be in-person.

The employer may present testimony, witnesses, and documents relevant to its case. During the hearing, the hearing officer will determine what is relevant and make sure that the record is complete. After the hearing, the hearing officer will mail a decision to the interested parties.

How to File an Appeal

Meet the Deadline: You must appeal within 21 calendar days from the date we mail the Child Labor determination, which is shown at the top of that form.

Appeal in Writing: Submit your written appeal by fax, mail, or in person at a Workforce Solutions office

FaxMailIn Person
(Keep confirmation receipt)
TWC Special Program Appeals
101 E 15th St, Rm 414
Austin, TX 78778-0001
Go to a Workforce Solutions Office
You cannot appeal by e-mail or phone.

Your letter or appeal form must include:

  • Your name
  • Child Labor complaint number
  • Your TWC Tax ID number
  • Your current address
  • The date TWC mailed the Child Labor determination
  •  A copy of the determination, if possible
  • Any dates on which you will not be able to participate in a hearing

Keep a copy of your appeal for your records.


Inform us in writing as early as possible if you need accommodations for the appeal hearing:

  • If you or your witnesses need interpreters. List what languages are needed (including sign language).
  • If you or your witnesses need special accommodations as members of the disabled community 
  • If you need access to a telephone or fax machine to participate in the hearing

A Notice of Hearing

It may take six to eight weeks to receive a hearing information packet with information about your appeal. TWC will mail you the packet ten to twenty days before your hearing.

The hearing information packet includes instructions on how to participate in the hearing, including:

  • Date and time of the hearing, the phone number to call, and the name and contact information of the hearing officer
  • How to submit documents to the hearing officer and to the other party
  • The issues that will be covered

Address Change

If your address changes, you must notify the Appeals department because we mail the hearing information and appeal decision to the address in our records. Send your address change in writing by fax or mail to:

512-463-9318TWC Special Program Appeals
101 E 15th St, Rm 414
Austin, TX 78778-0001

Prepare all the documents, witnesses, and evidence that you need to support your side of the issues. Before the hearing, you must send copies of all your documents to both the hearing officer and the other party. 

Allow enough time for your hearing. Usually, hearings take from one hour to four hours to complete. The time depends on many things, including the number of witnesses, documents, and issues in the case.

Document Evidence

Man writing on paper and using laptop computer

All documents and evidence must relate directly to the issues on the hearing notice. Be ready to tell who prepared the evidence and how it helps your case. Any documents you want to include in the hearing must be sent to the hearing officer.

Examples of documents or evidence:

  • Letters and memos
  • Timecards
  • Employee handbooks
  • Photos
  • Maps/diagrams
  • Permission forms

For a phone hearing, you must mail or fax copies of all the documents you want to present to the hearing officer. Send them as far in advance as possible. Documents may not be used if they are not provided in enough time before the hearing begins.

The hearing officer's address and fax number is on the first page of the hearing information packet. If there is another party in your case, that person’s mailing address is also on the first page.

For an in-person hearing, you can bring the documents with you or send them in advance.


If you want to call witnesses, they should have personal (first-hand) knowledge about the background, policies, incidents, or events regarding the issues on the hearing notice. For example, they either saw the incident, heard a supervisor say something directly, or saw the paperwork connected to the event.

Contact your witnesses before the hearing and have them arrange their schedules so they can participate in the hearing.

During the hearing, you must give the hearing officer your list of witnesses and their contact phone numbers. Have your witnesses stay available for the call until the hearing officer or you release them from the hearing.

If your hearing is in person, simply have your witnesses appear at the hearing location at the time and date for the hearing, or they may participate by phone as stated above.

Subpoena a Witness 

A subpoena is a written legal order that requires a person to appear at a hearing to testify or produce documents for a hearing.

Subpoenas may be issued at the discretion of the hearing officer. A request for a subpoena will be granted only after the hearing officer determines that the records or witnesses requested to be subpoenaed are relevant to the issues on appeal.

TWC pays the applicable fees for issuing a subpoena.

Withdraw the Appeal 

If you no longer want to proceed with the hearing, you can withdraw your appeal. Only the party who filed the appeal can withdraw or cancel the appeal.

The appeal withdrawal must be in writing and must contain the specific words that you wish to “withdraw your appeal.” 

The appeal can be withdrawn either before or during the hearing. Mail or fax the request to the Special Program Appeals Department. 

Before the Hearing

For phone hearings, you must provide a phone number where we can reach you for the hearing. Provide your contact information on the day of your hearing, at least 10 minutes before your hearing is scheduled to start. If you do not call in on time, you may not be allowed to participate in the hearing.

You can give us your phone number in one of two ways:

Register OnlinePhone

Register online at C2T Online Registration.

You will need your Case Number.

Call TWC at the toll-free number shown on your Notice of Hearing and speak with the receptionist.

Starting the Hearing

When it is time for the hearing, the hearing officer will call you and connect all parties and witnesses to a conference call. The hearing will begin when everyone is connected.

All hearings are scheduled for the Central Time zone. If you have any questions about when you should call, please call the toll-free number listed on the Notice of Hearing.

Why You Should Participate

Man using headset while on computer

It is important that you participate in the hearing because the hearing officer makes their decision based entirely on the evidence given during the appeal hearing.

If you find you cannot participate in the hearing for any reason, you should request the hearing be postponed. Your request should be sent as soon as possible, must be in writing, and mailed or faxed to Special Program Appeals Tribunal. An appeal hearing can be postponed or rescheduled only for specific situations that are allowed under TWC’s Rules. 

If you did not participate in the Appeal hearing and disagree with the decision, you can submit a request to reopen your case at the Wage Claim Appeal Tribunal level within 14 calendar days after the mailing date of the decision. However, you must show that you had a good reason for missing the prior hearing.

What Happens During the Hearing

All hearings are recorded. The law requires the hearing officer to read a specific opening statement at the start of the hearing. This opening statement includes:

  • Information identifying the case for the record
  • What determination and issues are on appeal
  • Who is taking part in the hearing
  • Each party’s rights
  • The procedures used for the hearing

The hearing officer will put everyone who will testify under Oath, and then answer questions before hearing any testimony.

If you have more than one person present, you must designate one primary representative, which can be yourself or your chosen representative. That primary representative will be able to:

  • Question the witnesses
  • Give their own testimony
  • Look at and object to documents

Order of Testimony 

The hearing officer will control the hearing and follow this procedure until all witnesses have testified.

  1. The hearing officer will hear statements from the employer and any witnesses, one at a time. 
  2. The hearing officer will question the witnesses, and then allow them to add relevant information.
  3. The hearing officer will discuss any documents that were sent in by either party or that are part of the case file. Documents will be admitted into evidence after ruling on any objections by either side.
  4. The hearing officer will then let the employer add any new testimony before ending the hearing.

After the hearing is complete, the hearing officer will mail you a written decision, usually within five to ten working days.

Request an Audio Recording of Your Hearing

You can request a copy of the recording of your hearing. It usually takes one to two weeks for you to receive your copy. The first copy is free; there is a small charge for any additional copies. Only the employer can request a copy of the recording.

Attn: CD Duplication
TWC Special Program Appeals Department
Attn: CD Duplication
101 E 15th St, Rm 406
Austin, TX 78778-0001

Your written request must include: 

  • Your name
  • Appeal number
  • Your TWC Tax ID number
  • Your phone number
  • Your mailing address

If you disagree with the Appeal Tribunal decision, you may request a review of the case by filing an Appeal to the Commission. 

Meet the Deadline: You must appeal within 14 calendar days from the date we mail the Appeal Tribunal decision. 

Appeal in Writing: Submit your written appeal by fax, mail, or in person at a Workforce Solutions office

FaxMailIn Person
(Keep confirmation receipt)
TWC Commission Appeals
101 E 15th St, Rm 678
Austin, TX 78778-0001
Go to a Workforce Solutions Office

If you disagree with the Commission decision, you may request a Motion for Rehearing.

Meet the Deadline: You must appeal within 14 calendar days from the date we mail the Appeal Tribunal decision.

Appeal in Writing: Submit your written appeal by fax, mail, or in person at a Workforce Solutions office

FaxMailIn Person
(Keep confirmation receipt)
TWC Commission Appeals
101 E 15th St, Rm 678
Austin, TX 78778-0001
Go to a Workforce Solutions Office

You cannot appeal by e-mail or phone. 

Motion for Rehearing Process

TWC will grant the Motion for Rehearing only if you show these three things

  • Important new information about your case
  • A compelling reason why you did not present the new information earlier
  • Why you think the new information could change the Appeal Tribunal decision

If you ask for a rehearing and the Commission denies it, you can still appeal the decision to a civil court.

You may appeal to a civil court within 30 calendar days after the date TWC mailed you the Commission decision. You must have completed the appeal process available through TWC, except the optional Motion for Rehearing, before appealing to a civil court. The instructions for submitting an appeal to a civil court are included with the Appeal Tribunal decision.

Learn About the Texas Child Labor Laws

Find information about how to submit a child labor law complaint. Also find information about restrictions on hours and occupations in Texas.