Start Licensure

Get Started on Foster Care Licensing & Adoption Home Study

Child foster care licensing is provided by Otter Tail County Human Services. There is no application fee required. To begin the child foster care licensing process, complete the 4 forms available below.

Beginning Forms

Return completed forms to Otter Tail County Human Services, attention to the child foster care licensor. By completing and submitting these 4 forms first the licensing process can proceed thus, accelerating the entire process.

Forms are available from the Otter Tail County website or from web pages outside of the Otter Tail County website in the portable document format (PDF).

Fingerprints, Home Visits & Interviews

Otter Tail County Human Services will then provide you the Adam Walsh Background Study Fingerprint cards with instructions on how to have this step completed. You will also be contacted by someone in our office to schedule a home visit to go through the home safety checklist with you. For additional information review the single family dwelling, child, and adult foster care information sheet from the Minnesota State Department of Public Safety Fire Marshal.

We will also conduct interviews with your family in order to get to know you and share further information about child foster care. This whole process is called a home study and is required by the Minnesota Foster Care Rule and the Department of Human Services.

Completing the Task

To continue the process, complete all 19 remaining forms / tasks found below and submit to the licensor. The training requirements will also be explained during the home study process and home visits with your licensor.

Remaining Forms

    • Each child over the age of 5 years old is asked to complete this form. Parents may assistant their child(ren) with this.
  • Discipline Policy
  • Complaint / Grievance Procedure Form
    • Every foster home in Otter Tail County is required to have a program grievance procedure that permits persons served by the program and their authorized representatives to bring a grievance to the highest level of authority in the program.
    • Use this form or develop your own complaint / grievance procedure. You are required to keep a copy of this policy in your home. You may use the sample form for reference.
  • Alcohol and Drug Use Policy
    • Every foster home must have a policy that prohibits license holders, employees, subcontractors and volunteers, when directly responsible for person served by the program, from abusing prescription medication or being in any manner under the influence of a chemical that impairs the individual’s ability to provide services or care.
    • All of these individuals must be trained on this policy. You are required to keep a copy of this policy in your home also. You may use the sample form for reference.
  • SUID (Sudden Unexplained Infant Death)/AHT (Abusive Head Trauma) Training
    • Foster Parents who care for children under the age of 5 are required to have SUID/AHT Training. One option to complete the
      trainings is to log on to SUID/AHT Training. To receive credit for completing these 2 trainings a certificate must be obtained from the website and provided to your licensor for documentation.
    • Foster Parents who care for children under the age of 9 are required to have a 3 hour training on Child Passenger Restraint Systems from a certified child passenger safety technician. Anyone transporting the foster child must have this training. A schedule of car seat training classes will be provided to the applicant once an application is made.
    • Each of these trainings must be updated every 5 years.
  • Furnace Inspection Form
    • This form will need to be completed by a licensed heating contractor when you have your furnace inspected.
    • There is a fee for this and you will need to pay this. Otter Tail County Human Services does not reimburse for this fee.
  • Well Water Test
    • If you do not have an approved municipal water system, your well water will need to be tested for total coliforms (indicators of bacterial pollution) and nitrate nitrogen.
    • This test will need to be completed annually and there is a fee for this. Otter Tail County Human Services does not reimburse for this fee.
  • Pet Shot Records
    • Please provide a copy of pet shot records for each of your pets.
  • Statement of Intended Use
  • Agreement Between Foster Parent and Placement Agency
  • Home Safety Checklist
    • This will be completed during a home visit with your licensor.
  • Floor and Escape Plan
    • This form assists an applicant in meeting the requirement of emergency procedures being planned, written and posted in the home. The floor plan must be posted in your home and we need a copy of the plan.
  • Minnesota Adoption and Foster Care Family Disaster Plan
    • This form is completed by the applicant to document the family’s plan in case of a natural disaster or catastrophic event requiring the family to evacuate their home.
    • This form is required for families that intend to care for children receiving services from the public child welfare system. Also, please refer to Ready for information about how to prepare and plan for your family in the event of a disaster.
  • Substitute Care Plan
The process takes approximately 4 months depending on how quickly the necessary verifications are returned to our office. If you have questions, please contact the licensor. Thank you for your interest in child foster care!

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