Serving Champaign, Douglas, Iroquois, Macon, Piatt and Vermilion, IL Counties
Do I need to be licensed to do child care in my home?
As a general rule of thumb, if the number of unrelated children you provide care for, is more than three (including your own children under age 12), you will need to obtain a child care license from the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS).
Can I be license-exempt?
If you provide care for only three or fewer children under the age of twelve, including your own, or children from a single household or only children related to you, then you may be license-exempt. Under the guidelines of providing legal care, submitting necessary forms, and passing background checks, you will be able to receive payments at the License-exempt rate from IL DHS to care for children who are receiving state assistance.
The State of Illinois Compiled Statutes law commonly known as the "Child Care Act of 1969" (225 IL CS 10/) regulates who is required to be licensed and who may qualify to be license-exempt. Family child care homes are not the only form of child care that may be license-exempt. Certain programs may be exempt for licensure. If you do not see a "Child Care License" prominately displayed, ask your child care provider which exemption they meet under Rule 377, to be license-exempt. To obtain a copy of the rules for programs that may be exempt, visit the following link to the State of Illinois:
What's required to get a license?
You must contact your local Department of Children and Family Services to obtain an appication and submit it for processing.
A family child care home in Illinois must:
To view full copies of the State of Illinois Department of Children and Family Services Licensing Standards, follow the links below
If you feel you are ready to request application materials for becoming licensed, call the Department of Children and Family Services in your county.
1808 Woodfield Dr. Sute 102
Savoy, IL 61874
Vermilion and Iroquois Counties:
401 N Franklin
Danville, IL 61832
Macon, Douglas and Piatt Counties:
2900 N Oakland
Decatur, IL 62526
DCFS Regional Office
2125 S. First St
Champaign, IL 61820
DCFS 800 Numbers:
Provider Information Line: 1-877-746-0829
Child Abuse Hotline: 1-800-252-2873
Maximum group size and ratios in family child care homes
A family child care provider without an assistant may care for up to eight children including their own, in the following combinations:
eight children under the age of 12:
or eight children under the age of 12:
or eight children under the age of 12:
A family child care provider may care for an additional four school-age children before and after school if she has an assistant who is at least 14 years old and at least 5 years older than the oldest child being cared for.
A family child care provider with an adult assistant (over the age of 18) may care for eight children under the age of 5. Five of these children may be under the age of 24 months. In addition, four school-age children may be cared for before and after school.
Maximum group size and ratios in group child care homes
The maximum number of children permitted in a group child care home is 16:
A group home provider without an assistant can care for the following combinations:
A group home provider with a part-time assistant may care for four additional part-time, school-age children. These children may attend only before or after school, on holidays, on weekends, during unforeseen school closings, and during the summer.
A group home provider with a full-time assistant may care for:
Are you interested in starting your own Family Child Care business or perhaps opening a Child Care Center? The following documents in PDF format, are one available resource from the Illinois Child Care Information Series. To request a pre-printed booklet be mailed to you, contact us. Other materials my be available to assist you further.
Note: These files are large and could take up to 80 seconds to download, depending on the speed of your Internet connection.