Septic Permit Process Steps

If you need to install, repair, or alter your septic system, please review the permitting steps below. The steps also are spelled out lower on the page, with helpful links to materials.

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In addition to the steps listed above and below, refer to the supplemental Project Flow Sheet for a general guide to designing and constructing an on-site sewage system on your property. Most applications can be submitted via the Health Department website. Licensed professionals must create an account on the application submittal site.

  1. Contact a licensed septic system designer or professional engineer to evaluate your property and submit an Application for an On-Site Sewage System Permit to the Health Department for review.
  2. Once the Snohomish County Health Department receives the application, a permit technician will review the application for completeness.
  3. If your application is complete, you will pay the application fee and your application will enter the queue to be reviewed by an Environmental Health Specialist from the Health Department. If your application is incomplete, you will be notified. Once you make corrections, you may resubmit your application. 
  4. Once an Environmental Health Specialist has reviewed your application, design, and property for compliance with state and local regulations, the application will be approved or denied.
  5. If your design is not approved, you will receive a letter of explanation. Your designer may submit a redesign after addressing the issues. A copy of the Health Department's appeal process will be referenced in the letter and is available upon request.
  6. Once your design and application are approved, an application approval will be sent to you and your designer. This approval is valid for 2 years. The application may be renewed for an additional 2-year period. To renew, the Health Department must receive a complete renewal application from your designer and payment of the renewal fee within 30 days of the initial application’s expiration date. The application will be reviewed to ensure that the current Department Code is met.
  7. A sewage disposal installation permit for new construction will not be issued before the City or County Building Department permit is issued.
  8. Requirements for issuing an on-site sewage system installation permit:
    1. Building permit issued by City or County Building Department.
    2. Hire a certified installer.
    3. Pay appropriate permit fee  (required for all systems except repairs and alterations).
    4. Submit recorded Declaration of Covenant  (required for all systems except gravity and pressure distribution).
    5. Submit copy of a signed monitoring & maintenance agreement with an approved service provider (required for all systems except gravity and pressure distribution).
    6. Your licensed septic system designer must contact the Health Department to schedule a pre-construction meeting and request permit issuance for installation.
  9.  Your designer must inspect the completed installation and submit an as-built to the Health Department.
  10. An Environmental Health Specialist from the Health Department will conduct a review of the as-built and installation.
  11. Upon final inspection approval and as-built acceptance, the Health Department offers an online database of septic system records.

More info is available in our FAQs.

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