Start Child Care

Complete the Licensing Process

A Family License authorizes a child care provider to care for up to 7 children, plus two additional school-age children in their home.
Learn more about North Dakota child care licensing ➜ 

  • Step One: Contact Licenser
  • They will connect you to the child care licenser, help you start the application process, and provide a list of specific state, country and local licensing requirements. Here are some questions you may want to ask:
    - Does my community have additional ordinances that regulate child care?
    - Where do I go to get fingerprinted? Is there a charge?
    - Do other people living in my home need to get fingerprinted as well?
    - Do I need a fire inspection?
    - Where can I get CPR and first-aid training?

  • Step Two: Criminal Background Checks
  • This link will take you to a list of forms that include the following documents that you will need to complete your required Criminal Background Check
    ☐ SFN 829 - Personal Authorization for Criminal History Record Information Inquiry
    ☐ SFN 60688 - Criminal History Record Check Request Form
    ☐ SFN 836 - Fingerprint Identity Verification

  • > Fingerprint Scan

    Other household members, child care helpers or volunteers may need to be fingerprinted. Contact your child care licenser to verify requirements, learn where to go for fingerprinting and if there is a charge for this service.

  • Step Three: Prepare for Inspection
  • Complete Personnel Requirements

  • The child care provider must
    - Be present in home at least 60% during child care hours
    - Meet staffing requirements based on the number of children present
    - CPR/First Aid Certified
    - Completed Orientation (in person or online)
    Worker/volunteers must be
    - At least 12 years of age if an immediate family member
    - Have written permission if between the ages of 14 and 16 years
    - Be supervised by the provider at all times if under age 18
    - Receive orientation within the first week of employment
    - Have completed authorized background checks

  • Complete and Organize Required Paperwork
    File these documents in one central location (e.g. a file box or drawer) to expedite the licensing inspection..

  • > A copy of Family Rules
  • > Documentation of Pet Immunizations (if applicable)
  • Notifying them of fees and time of payment.

  • Including but not limited to
    - Guidance and discipline of children
    - Accident and illness response procedures
    - Reporting procedure if parents or staff wish to file a complaint, suspected licensing violation, or suspected child abuse or neglect
    - Hiring practices
    - Daily reports for their child upon request
    - Accountability procedure if a child fails to arrive
    - Transportation procedures, if applicable

  • Prepare Individual Files
    If a child is enrolled prior to licensing, each child must have an individual file that includes the following:

  • This link will take you to a list of forms that include the following documents you will need to complete your application for a Family Child Care License
    ☐ SFN 845 - Child Information Sheet
    ☐ SFN 847 - Parent's Statement of Health
    ☐ SFN 16038 - Certification of Immunization

  • > Official documentation (birth certificate or passport) verifying the identifcation of the child
  • Prepare Your Child Care Environment
    Verify that your child care environment has the following:

  • > Posted Meal Plans
  • > Set Up Child Care Environment

    Providing adequate supply of safe materials and toys for indoor/outdoor play

  • > Minimum of 35 sq. ft. per child of usable INDOOR play space
  • > Minimum 75 sq. ft. per child useable OUTDOOR play space
  • > Smoke Detectors

    One working detector in each sleeping area and one on each level

  • > Fire Extingishers

    One working fire extinguisher on each level

  • > Hand Soap and Towels

    Soap and towels (paper or individual) available at each sink

  • > Hot Water: 120 degrees fahrenheit or less
  • > Drinking Water from an Approved Source
  • > Railings or Gates in Place Where Necessary to Prevent Falls
  • > Established Napping Areas
  • > Signage Posted to Assure a Smoke-Free Environment

CLICK IMAGE TO VIEW/DOWNLOAD ➜ Includes 7 pages of instruction and a 40-page appendix of required licensing documents.

Have Questions?
Contact a Child Care Aware® Start-Up Consultant
StartChildCare@ndchildcare.org | 800-997-8515

Learn More About It
Visit the Run Your Child Care ➜ section to learn more about operating a child care business.