5130. Regional Licensing

Approval: Connie Lambert-Eckel, Acting Assistant Secretary

Original Date: August 31, 2015

Revised Date: July 1, 2018

Sunset Review: July 1, 2023


Purpose

Regional licensing assesses, licenses and monitors services provided to children in out-of-home care by group care facilities (GCF) and private child placing agencies (CPA).

Scope

This policy applies to all Division of Licensed Resources (DLR) regional licensing staff.

Laws

RCW 43.20A.205 Denial, suspension, revocation, or modification of license

RCW 74.15 Care of children, expectant mothers, persons with developmental disabilities

Policy

  1. GCF, CPA and Adoption Services and Child Foster Homes must meet licensing requirements.
  2. The regional licensor must complete the Medication Management and Administration eLearning training within 90 days of hire.
  3. Waivers to Washington Administrative Code (WAC) requirements must be approved by the DLR administrator or designee using the Licensing Waiver DSHS 15-411.
  4. Licensing application documents must be received within 90 days of receipt of application or it may be withdrawn. Regional licensors must work with the agency and notify them before withdrawing an application.
  5. GCF may have more than one type of license depending on the services that it offers.
  6. Foster homes certified by the CPA must meet minimum licensing requirements (MLR).
  7. Applicants for a provisional expedited license certified by the CPA must meet the following requirements:
    1. Held a foster care license in the last five years that was not closed due to a denial, revocation, or an agreement to relinquish.
    2. Resides in the same home in which the applicant was licensed, and no additional individuals have moved into the home.
    3. Seeking a license from the same agency with which they were previously licensed and the agency agrees to supervise the home.
    4. Passed the required background check for all household members age 16 years and older before the expedited license is issued.
  8. The regional licensor must complete new CPA licenses and renewals within the timeframes per DLR Performance Goals located on the Children’s Administration (CA) intranet under DLR Programs.
  9. Foster parents must apply for a new license when there is a change in circumstance due to the absence or addition of an identified caregiver.
  10. A CPA may certify homes in more than one geographic region as long as the agency provides supervision and support to the home. The license must be issued from the region in which the family physically resides.
  11. The CPA license is approved by the regional licensor in the region where the license is issued.
  12. Licenses are issued for a maximum of three years.
  13. Licenses will be issued or denied in writing.

Procedures

  1. New Licenses for GCF and CPA
    The Regional Licensor must:
    1. Verify the Application for Child Care Agency License DSHS 10-408 and the application materials are complete.
    2. Contact and obtain references for a newly hired agency director or administrator using the DLR Agency Letter of Reference DSHS 16-211. A minimum of three references are required. Agency references may be accepted for the agency director or administrator if the agency has upper management complete the references.
    3. Process the background check for licensing applicants, staff and volunteers in accordance with WAC 388-06A.
    4. Complete FamLink person search and CA file review on all licensing applicants, staff and volunteers.
    5. Determine if a person is disqualified or denied from association with a child care or private agency for not meeting MLR in RCW 74.15 and WAC 388-145, WAC 388-147, and WAC 388-148. (See 5160 Adverse Action on a Foster Care License)
    6. Evaluate the agency’s policy and procedures, physical setting, personnel files, child files, and provider files using the designated checklist for the type of license. This includes reviewing sample files for agencies currently pending licensure. (See CA intranet DLR Programs, DLR Forms) 
    7. Request an inspection from the Department of Health (DOH) and the Washington State Patrol’s (WSP) Fire Protection Bureau for all GCF with the exception of Staffed Residential Homes licensed for five or fewer children. Approved inspections must be documented prior to issuing the license. Additional inspections may be requested if concerns are noted.
    8. Confirm that all staff having unsupervised access to children are cleared through a background check.
    9. Confirm that an adequate number of staff are available to provide services. This may include reviewing shift logs or a calendar to verify appropriate staffing levels.
    10. Confirm all WAC licensing requirements for the applicable license are met before issuing a license.
    11. Document the license start and expiration date in FamLink as three years minus one day.
    12. Submit the file for supervisory review.
  2. New Licenses for CPA Foster Homes
    The Regional Licensor must:
    1. Verify that a Family Home Study Application DSHS 10-354 has been received.
    2. Complete background checks on individuals age 16 and older, including those living on the premises, and other requirements in the 6800 Background Check policy.
    3. Open a pending “Full” license in FamLink.
    4. Complete FamLink person search and CA file review on all persons, of any age, living in the home, or who are being cleared to provide substitute care for children.
    5. Require the applicant to provide additional information or complete an evaluation when concerns are identified during the interview or on the paperwork. Evaluations required are at the foster parent’s expense.
      1. Obtain a release signed by the applicant allowing information sharing before, during and after the evaluation.
      2. Provide all information to the evaluator related to the worker’s concern.
    6. Verify the home study meets the 5110 Home Study policy requirements.
    7. Verify the CPA foster home application materials are complete.
    8. Document the following in FamLink on the provider’s “General” tab in the “License Information” group box:
      1. Select “Full” license as the “Type”.
      2. The "Date Issued" is the date the foster home license is approved and the "Expiration Date” is three years’ minus one day from the “Date Issued”.
      3. Select the “Approve” radio button in the “License Recommendations” group box to obtain supervisor approval.
    9. Submit the file for supervisory review.
    10. Issue a license based on the CPA’s certification that a foster home meets the MLR.
    11. Provide a paper copy of the license DSHS 10-010 and Foster Parent Identification (ID) cards to the agency for the foster parent following supervisor approval.
    12. The regional licensor must verify the following information is in the regional licensing paper file:
      1. Certification for License of Foster Home DSHS 10-016
      2. Family Home Study Application DSHS 10-354
      3. Home Study File Checklist DSHS 10-182
      4. Foster Home Inspection Checklist DSHS 10-183
      5. Home Study
      6. Emergency Evacuation Plan DSHS 16-204
      7. Background Authorizations DSHS 09-653 forms
      8. Administrative Review’s collateral information for crimes or negative actions, if applicable
      9. Licensing and Safety Supervision Plan DSHS 10-419, if applicable
      10. Verification of required training
      11. Verification of Indian Status DSHS 15-128, if applicable
        NOTE: Other required licensing documents not listed above are required to be completed and maintained in the CPA files (e.g. medical statement, marriage and divorce statements and documentation, financial statement, policy agreements, immunizations, etc.).
  3. Provisional Expedited License for CPA Foster Home
    When a provisional expedited license application is received, the regional licensor worker must:
    1. Verify the applicant meets the requirements to be eligible for a provisional expedited license.
    2. Verify that a Family Home Study Application DSHS 10-354 has been received.
    3. Complete background checks on individuals age 16 and older, including those living on the premises, and other requirements in the 6800 Background Check policy.
    4. Verify the Provisional Expedited File Checklist DSHS 10-182B has been completed.
    5. Enter the capacity for the license in FamLink by verifying the following:
      1. The number of children cannot be more than the capacity they had when they were previously licensed.
      2. If a caregiver moved out of the home the capacity cannot be more than what is allowed by the minimum licensing requirements.
      3. If children who were previously in the home when licensed have since been adopted or are in a guardianship, reduce the number from their previous license capacity.
    6. Document the following in FamLink on the provider’s “General” tab in the “License Information” group box:
      1. Select “Expedited” license as the “Type”.
      2. Select the “Approve” radio button in the “License Recommendation” group box to obtain supervisor approval.
      3. The “Date Issued” is the date the provisional expedited license is approved and the “Expiration Date” is three months minus one day from the “Date Issued”. If the foster home license is not completed within 90 days, staff with the supervisor whether or not to reissue a second expedited license.
      4. Open a new pending full license the day after the expedited license was approved.
    7. Upon supervisor approval, issue the paper copy of the Provisional Expedited Foster Home License DSHS 10-010A within five days of requirements being met.
    8. Notify the IV-E specialist that this home does not meet minimum licensing requirements. CA cannot claim IV-E funds until a full license is issued on the home.  
    9. The regional licensor must verify the following information is in the regional licensing paper file:
      1. Certification for License of Foster Home DSHS 10-016
      2. Family Home Study Application DSHS 10-354
      3. Provisional Expedited License File Checklist DSHS 10-182B
      4. Background Check Authorizations DSHS 09-653 forms
      5. Administrative Review’s collateral information for crimes or negative actions, if applicable.
      6. NOTE: The completed Policy Agreements DSHS 10-290 and Household Safety Inspection for Unlicensed Placements DSHS 10-453 or Foster Home Inspection Checklist DSHS 10-183 are required to be completed and maintained in the CPA files.
  4. After the Provisional Expedited License for CPA Foster Home is Issued the Regional Licensor must:
    1. Follow the New Foster Home License procedures section 2.b.-m.
    2. Verify with the agency that all licensing application materials have been submitted by the applicant within 14 days of receipt of the application.
    3. Determine the expiration date of the full license in FamLink. The expiration date documented in FamLink is three years minus one day. The start date is the day after the provisional expedited license was closed.
    4. Provide a paper copy of the Foster Home License DSHS 10-010 and Foster Parent ID cards to the foster parent following supervisor approval.
    5. Notify the IV-E specialist that the home is now fully licensed.
  5. Renewal for GCF or CPA
    The Regional Licensor must:
    1. Send a courtesy renewal notice to the agency 120 days in advance of the license expiration date. For applications received before the expiration date, the license remains in effect until DLR completes the renewal.
    2. Verify the Application for Child Care Agency License DSHS 10-408 and renewal materials are complete.
    3. Verify that all GCF staff at BRS contracted facilities have completed the Medication and Administration eLearning training. 
    4. Document compliance with all applicable items on the designated checklist. Areas of non-compliance are documented on a Compliance Agreement DSHS 10-248.
    5. Complete 1.c.-l. requirements in the New Licenses for GCF and CPA section.
  6. Renewals for CPA Foster Homes
    The Regional Licensor must:
    1. Send a courtesy email to the private agency if DLR has not received a renewal application within one month of the license expiring.
    2. Contact the agency if DLR has not received an application within one day of the license expiration date.
    3. Close the license if DLR has not received a signed application by the license expiration date. If there are children in placement, the regional licensor must notify the DCFS placement worker that the license has been closed.
    4. Verify that a Family Home Study Application DSHS 10-354 has been received.
    5. Complete background checks on individuals age 16 and older, including those living on the premises, and other requirements in the 6800 Background Check policy.
    6. Review the renewal materials provided by the private agency.
    7. Submit the file for supervisory review.
    8. Issue a license based on the CPA’s certification of a foster home meeting MLR.
    9. Provide a paper copy of the license and Foster Parent ID cards to the agency for the foster parent following supervisor approval.
    10. The regional licensor must verify the following information is in the CPA Foster Home paper file for a renewal:
      1. Certification for License of Foster Home DSHS 10-016 
      2. Family Home Study Application DSHS 10-354
      3. Home Study File Checklist DSHS 10-182
      4. Foster Home Inspection Checklist DSHS 10-183
      5. Home Study
      6. Emergency Evacuation Plan DSHS 16-204
      7. Background Authorizations DSHS 09-653 forms
      8. Administrative Review’s collateral information for crimes or negative actions, if applicable
      9. Verification of required trainings
      10. Licensing and Safety Supervision Plan DSHS 10-419, if applicable
  7. Moves for GCF
    Regional Licensors must:
    1. Verify the Application for Child Care Agency License or Certification DSHS 10-408 is complete.
    2. Review the agency floor plan and evacuation procedures for compliance with the MLR.
    3. Verify that all agency staff have a background check completed following the 6800 Background Check policy.
    4. Complete a physical inspection of the agency using the designated checklist.
    5. Request an inspection from the DOH and the WSPs Fire Protection Bureau for all GCF with the exception of staffed residential homes licensed for five or fewer children. Approved inspections must be completed and documented prior to license issuance. Additional inspections may be requested if concerns are noted.
    6. Document compliance with all applicable items on the designated checklist. Areas of non-compliance are documented on a Compliance Agreement DSHS 10-248.
    7. The new facility must be licensed and operating prior to children being moved.
    8. The regional licensor may issue a new three-year license in lieu of amending the license if the license expires within six months of the move. The renewal paperwork is required to complete this license.
    9. Provide a paper copy of the license to the agency following supervisory approval.
  8. Moves for CPA
    Regional Licensors must:
    1. Verify the Application for Child Care Agency License or Certification DSHS 10-408 is complete.
    2. Verify that all agency staff have a background check completed following the 6800 Background Check policy.
    3. Complete a physical inspection of the agency.
    4. Document compliance with all applicable items on the designated checklist. Areas of non-compliance are documented on a Compliance Agreement DSHS 10-248.
    5. The regional licensor may issue a new three-year license in lieu of amending the license if the license expires within six months of the move. The renewal paperwork is required to complete this license.
    6. Provide a paper copy of the license to the agency following supervisory approval.
  9. Moves for Child Placing Agency Foster Homes
    See Foster Home Family Moves located in the 5120. Licensing State Foster Homes policy.
  10. CPA Foster Home Change in Circumstances
    The Regional Licensors must:
    1. Review the private agency’s assessment of the foster home that had a change in circumstance affecting their parenting.
    2. Require the agency to complete the Foster Home Re-Assessment DSHS 10-405 or update the home study.
    3. Staff the change in circumstance with the DLR supervisor and private agency licensor to determine the appropriate licensing action (Foster Home Re-assessment, license modification, or new three-year license).
    4. The regional licensor may modify the license depending on the circumstances, evaluation of the regional licensor and CPA Licensor, or by request of the licensee.
  11. Health and Safety Visits
    1. The regional licensors must:
      1. Complete two six-month health and safety visits annually on all contracted Behavior Rehabilitation Services (BRS) CPA and GCF or contracted medically fragile facilities, one of which must be unannounced.
      2. The Renewal and Comprehensive Review will take the place of a health and safety visit.
    2. For contracted BRS or contracted medically fragile GCFs, regional licensors must:
      1. Complete the site inspection using the designated checklist for the type of license at each health and safety monitoring visit.
      2. Once per year, complete a review of a minimum of three child files during at least one of the two six-month health and safety monitoring visits.
      3. Once per year, complete a review of a minimum of three personnel files during at least one of the two six-month health and safety monitoring visits.
      4. Review other documents and conduct interviews with youth and staff as necessary.
      5. Complete a review of storage, administration, and documentation related to medication at each health and safety monitoring visit.
      6. Verify the food in the facility is not expired, there is no home-canned food being served, and that the food being offered meets the child’s nutritional needs at each health and safety monitoring visit.
      7. Document the health and safety visit in a FamLink provider note with the activity “Regional Licensing Health and Safety” or “Unannounced Regional Licensing Health and Safety” as appropriate.
    3. For contracted BRS CPAs, regional licensors must:
      1. Complete the site inspection using the designated checklist for the type of license.
      2. Once per year, complete a review of a minimum of three child files during at least one of the two six-month health and safety monitoring visits.
      3. Once per year, complete a review of a minimum of three personnel files during at least one of the two six-month health and safety monitoring visits.
      4. Once per year, complete a review of a minimum of three foster home files during at least one of the two six-month health and safety monitoring visits.
      5. Review other documents and conduct interviews with youth, staff, or foster parents as necessary.
    4. For all facilities serving homeless youth, the regional licensors must complete a health and safety review every three years beginning at or around 18 months after entering into a new license or during each renewal (mid-licensing) period. These facilities include overnight youth shelters and facilities that have a contract through the Department of Commerce for HOPE beds.
    5. For GCF serving homeless youth, regional licensors must:
      1. Complete 100% percent of the mid-licensing health and safety monitoring visits unannounced.
      2. Complete the site inspection using the designated checklist for the type of license.
      3. Complete a review of a minimum of three child files using the appropriate checklist.
      4. Complete a review of a minimum of three personnel files using the appropriate checklist.
      5. Complete a review of storage, administration, and documentation related to medication.
      6. Review other documents and conduct interviews as necessary. 
      7. Document the health and safety visit in a FamLink provider note with the activity “Regional Licensing Health and Safety” or “Unannounced Regional Licensing Health and Safety” as appropriate.
  12. Comprehensive Review
    The regional licensor must participate in comprehensive reviews for contracted BRS or contracted medically fragile providers or other contracted or licensed providers as applicable. See 5140. Comprehensive Reviews.
  13. Overcapacity/Age/Gender Administrative Approvals
    The regional licensor must:
    1. Review the Overcapacity Administrative Approval DSHS 15-349 form in FamLink to approve or deny placements outside the license capacity for private agency foster homes.
    2. Review the hard copy of Overcapacity Administrative Approval DSHS 15-349 form for approved overcapacities for respite.
    3. Send a copy of the approved DSHS 15-349 to the agency.
      NOTE: Overcapacities for GCF require a waiver approved by the DLR administrator or designee.
  14. No Referral Process
    The Regional Licensor must:
    1. Create a “no referral” when an agency or licensee requests no additional placements be made in a CPA foster home.
    2. Staff with the DLR supervisor if the agency is not in agreement with a “no referral” and if there is a safety, health or well-being concern to determine whether to recommend a “no referral.”
    3. When recommending a “no referral” on a CPA foster home:
      1. Notify Division of Children and Family Services (DCFS), and other agencies involved.
      2. If DCFS approves the “no referral”:
        1. Inform all involved, including but not limited to CPA, DCFS, Developmental Disabilities Administration (DDA) staff, and tribes, when a decision is made not to place.
        2. Complete a letter to the foster parents notifying them that no more placements will be made in their home and send to the DCFS regional administrator (RA) or designee for approval. If approved:
          1. Send the letter to the DCFS RA or designee to send the letter to the foster parent.
          2. Request the DCFS RA or designee to notify the DLR worker.
      3. Create a “no referral” in FamLink.
    4. When recommending a “no referral” on a CPA foster home be lifted notify the:
      1. DLR administrator or designee and DCFS RA or designee for approval. If approved, the DLR worker will remove the "no referral" in FamLink.
      2. Foster parent.
      3. DCFS placement desk
    5. When recommending a “no referral” to DCFS on a GCF:
      1. Staff with the DLR administrator or designee.
      2. If DCFS approves the “no referral”:
        1. Inform all agencies involved of the decision not to place.
        2. Complete a letter to the GCF notifying them that no more placements will be made in the facility and send to the DCFS RA or designee for approval. If approved:
          1. Send the letter to the DCFS RA or designee to send the letter to the agency
          2. Request the DCFS RA or designee to notify the DLR worker.
        3. Create a “no referral” in FamLink.
    6. When recommending a “no referral” on a GCF be lifted notify the:
      1. DLR administrator or designee and DCFS RA or designee for approval. If approved, the DLR worker will remove the “no referral” in FamLink.
      2. Foster parent.
      3. DCFS placement desk.
    7. For facilities that do not accept placement of children in care and custody of the department, staff with DLR supervisor and assistant attorney general for possible summary legal action if health and safety of children is at risk.

Forms

Application for Child Care Agency License or Certification DSHS 10-408
Child Placing Agency Checklist DSHS 16-185
Crisis & Secured Crisis Residential Checklist DSHS 16-186
DLR Licensing Findings DSHS 27-068
Emergency Respite Center and Resource and Assessment Center Checklist DSHS 16-183
Group Home and Staff Residential Home Checklist DSHS 16-189
Maternity Services Checklist DSHS 16-184
Medically Fragile Children and Children with Severe Developmental Disabilities Checklist DSHS 16-188
Overnight Youth Shelter Checklist DSHS 16-190
Provisional Expedited Foster Home License DSHS 10-010A
Provisional Expedited License Checklist DSHS 10-182B
NOTE: Forms that are not linked are on the CA intranet under DLR Programs, DLR Forms.

Resources

DLR Performance Goals located on the CA intranet under DLR Programs.
THERE IS NO CURRENT CHECKLIST FOR GROUP RECEIVING CENTER OR DAYTREATMENT SERVICES*
WAC 388-145 Group Care Facilities minimum licensing requirements
WAC 388-147 Child-placing agencies and adoption centers minimum licensing requirements
WAC 388-148 Child foster homes minimum licensing requirements