Administrator Requirements and Guidelines

The Adult Care Licensure Section is responsible for approving administrators of adult care homes and family care homes. Administrators of adult care homes (7+ beds) are required to successfully meet all criteria of certification listed under NC Gen. Stat. § 90-288-14. Administrators of family care homes (2-6 beds) are required to successfully meet all criteria listed under 10A NCAC 13G .1501.

An applicant who completes the assisted living administrator certification process receives a certificate that allows the administrator to work in an adult care home or a family care home.

An applicant who meets the requirements under 10A NCAC 13G .1501 receives a family care home administrator approval certificate. This approval certificate allows the administrator to work only in a family care home.

Applicants: Please send all application information and materials directly to the Division of Health Service Regulation (DHSR) office:
Division of Health Service Regulation
Adult Care Licensure Section
Attn: Administrator Certification and Approval
2708 Mail Service Center
Raleigh, NC 27699-2708

Administrator Certification and Family Care Home Administrator Approval Requirements

Note: All required items listed below must be included when submitting application. Failure to include all items may result in denial of application.

  1. Assisted Living Administrator Application
  2. Copy of your driver's license or another proof of age must be provided, as the applicant must be at least 21 years of age.
  3. Copy of resume
  4. Documentation of education (copy of transcript or diploma)
    1. Assisted Living Administrator Certification

      A high school diploma or its equivalent and successful completion of the equivalent of two years of coursework at an accredited college university;

      or

      A high school diploma or its equivalent and a minimum of 60 months of supervisory experience within the seven years preceding the date of application;

      or

      A high school diploma or its equivalent and successful completion of the equivalent of one year of coursework at an accredited college or university AND 48 months of supervisory experience within the five years preceding the date of the application.

    2. Note: Supervisory experience includes full-time, direct management responsibility, including some responsibility for hiring and firing over the equivalent of at least two full-time employees with direct resident care responsibilities. Supervisory experience shall have been in a licensed adult care home or licensed nursing home.

      Supervisory experience must be documented on applicant’s resume and reference letter from the applicant’s supervisor at the time of employment. The reference letter must be on company letterhead and include: dates of employment, statement of supervisory experience, and business phone number of the supervisor.

    3. Family care home administrator approval:

      A high school diploma or general education diploma (GED).

  5. A satisfactory criminal history report by the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation (SBI) (NC Gen. Stat. § 90-288-14, 10A NCAC 13G .1501, NC Gen. Stat. § 93B-8.1(b))
    Effective March 15, 2021
    To obtain your state criminal history report, you must do the following:
    1. Obtain an Electronic Fingerprint Submission Release of Information Form and Applicant Information Form by sending an email request to: DHSR.AdultCare.Questions@dhhs.nc.gov.
    1. Upon receipt of forms, the applicant must take the forms to a law enforcement agency.

    The fee for Live Scan is $38.00 which must be paid directly to the law enforcement agency. The law enforcement agency may charge an additional fee for taking your fingerprints.

    If the law enforcement agency does not have a Live Scan device, a card will be printed and provided to the applicant for fingerprinting.  Applicant must submit the completed fingerprint card to the SBI by mail.

    1. The law enforcement agency will review the forms and complete the fingerprint processing.
    1. The applicant must return the Electronic Fingerprint Submission Release of Information Form with Administrator application packet to the Adult Care Licensure Section (ACLS).
    1. The SBI will send the SBI criminal history report directly to the Adult Care Licensure Section within approximately 2 weeks.

    If the applicant has been a resident of the state of North Carolina for less than five years,  a satisfactory national criminal history report from the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) must be provided in addition to the SBI criminal history check.

    To obtain a federal criminal history report, the application must select state and federal for Reason Fingerprinted on the Applicant Information Form.


  6. Successful completion of a 120-hour Administrator-in-Training (AIT) program as required by G.S. NC Gen.Stat § 90-288.14(14) and 10A NCAC 13G .1501. The training consists of a minimum of 20 hours of coursework or study and a minimum of 100 hours of on-the-job training under a preceptor who is approved by the AIT program provider. All hours must be completed after enrolling in the AIT program. The applicant and AIT program provider are responsible for submitting documentation of the completion of the AIT program to the ACLS office. The applicant must complete their program under one of the following approved providers: AIT Program Providers

    The applicant must provide our office with the AIT program certificate, evaluation form, and documentation of training hours completed.

  7. Successful completion of the Administrator Exam administered by the Division of Health Services Regulation Testing Unit. A test schedule is available online and may also be requested by calling the Testing Unit office at 919-855-3793.  The applicant must provide a copy of the letter received from the Testing Unit to the ACLS.Exam completion date must not be more than one (1) year from the date of application.

Review of Applicant Criminal History

As authorized by NC Gen. Stat. § 93B-8.1(b), any individual who applies to become a certified or approved administrator is subject to a criminal background review by the Adult Care Licensure Section (ACLS). 

When determining eligibility for certification or approval, ACLS and The North Carolina ACLS Committee (The Committee) consider the applicant’s criminal background.  Pursuant to NC Gen. Stat. § 93B-8.1(b1), ACLS and The Committee evaluate the following factors:

  1. The level and seriousness of the crime(s);
  2. The date of the crime(s);
  3. The age of the person at the time of the crime(s);
  4. The circumstances surrounding the commission of the crime, if known;
  5. The nexus between the criminal conduct and the prospective duties of the applicant as a licensee;
  6. The prison, jail, probation, parole, rehabilitation, and employment records of the applicant since the date the crime was committed;
    1. The completion of, or active participation in, rehabilitative drug or alcohol treatment;
    2. A Certificate of Relief granted pursuant to NC Gen. Stat § 15A-173.2;
  7. The subsequent commission of a crime by the applicant; and
  8. Any affidavits or other written documents, including character references.

Criminal History Predetermination Process

In accordance with NC Gen. Stat. § 93B-8.1(b6), applicants with a criminal history may petition The Committee for a predetermination process to review the applicant’s criminal history report prior to starting or completing any mandatory education and/or training requirements to become a certified or approved adult care home administrator.  To request a complete petition for review the applicant shall provide the following:

  1. Completed Criminal History Predetermination Review Inquiry Form
  2. A certified state criminal history report provided by the State Bureau of Investigation (SBI). If the applicant has been a resident of North Carolina for less than five years, the applicant shall provide a certified state criminal history report provided by the SBI and a certified national criminal history report provided by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
  3. A certified check or money order in the amount of $45.00 made out to the Division of Health Service Regulation for the predetermination process fee.
    NOTE: All fees are non-refundable.

Entering into the predetermination process is the decision of an applicant and as such, the applicant is responsible for all fees and requirements. The Adult Care Licensure Section will not reimburse an applicant any fees if they are ultimately denied an administrator certification or approval once the predetermination process and application process has been completed. 

Administrator Denial

In accordance with NC Gen.Stat. § 150B, Article 3, an applicant who has been denied an administrator certification or approval may appeal the agency’s decision by initiating a petition with the Office of Administrative Hearings within thirty (30) calendar days of date of the original agency decision if the applicant was seeking to become a certified administrator, and sixty (60) calendar days if the applicant was seeking to become an approved administrator.

The applicant is eligible to reapply twenty-four (24) months after the date of the most recent application.  The reapplication process includes a review of the applicant’s criminal background information and, if applicable, the investigation summary.

Administrator Renewals

Administrator certification is initially due for renewal by December 31st of the following year after their certification. The initial certification approval letter will include the required continuing education hours for the first renewal. After the initial renewal, certified administrators are required to complete at least 30 hours of continuing education every 2 years. Renewal applications are mailed to certified administrators at the mailing address listed on their most recent application.

The following items must be postmarked or hand delivered to the Adult Care Licensure Section by December 31st:

Continuing education certificates should not be sent to ACLS prior to your submission of the renewal application to ACLS. Renewal applications and all required continuing education certificates not postmarked or hand-delivered after December 31st will be denied and the administrator certification will expire by virtue of law on December 31st. When an administrator certification has expired by virtue of the law, functioning in the capacity of an administrator is not allowed.

Family care home administrator approval is initially due for renewal by June 30th of the following year after their approval. The initial approval letter will include the required continuing education hours for the first renewal. After the initial renewal, approved family care home administrators are required to complete at least 30 hours of continuing education every 2 years. Renewal applications are mailed to currently approved family care home administrators at the mailing address listed on their most recent application. The completed application along with continuing education certificates must be postmarked or hand-delivered to the Adult Care Licensure Section (ACLS) by June 30th. There is not a fee for renewing your approval as a family care home administrator.

The following items must be postmarked or hand delivered to the Adult Care Licensure Section by June 30th:

Continuing education certificates should not be sent to ACLS prior to your submission of the renewal application to ACLS. Renewal applications and all required continuing education certificates not postmarked or hand-delivered after June 30th will be denied and the administrator approval will expire on June 30th. When an administrator approval has expired, functioning in the capacity of an administrator is not allowed.

Continuing Education

Continuing education certificates submitted with renewal application must meet the following criteria:

  1. Topics and course content should be relevant to adult care home operation and management to include such areas as: resident care skills, needs of the elderly, persons with physical or intellectual disabilities, rules and regulations, management and supervisory skills, and issues impacting adult care.
  2. Certificates must indicate course name, date of completion, number of hours completed, name of participant, signature of instructor, and contact information of the instructor or program.
  3. No more than eight hours per day will be accepted.
  4. Courses repeated in the calendar year will only count once toward the administrator's renewal.

Posting

Certificates must be prominently posted in the adult care home where the administrator works. Family care home approval letters must be maintained in the home.

Statute and Rules

The rule regarding applicant criminal history review is NC. Gen. Stat. § 93B-8.1(b1).

The adult care home rule regarding administrator certification is 10A NCAC 13F .1701 which references the administrator certification law, NC. Gen. Stat. § 90, Article 20A (Sections 288.10 – 288.20).

The family care home rule regarding administrator approval requirements is 10A NCAC 13G .1501.

To report changes to administrator information, (name change, mailing address, phone number, email address, etc.) administrators must submit the updated information to the following email address: DHSR.AdultCare.Questions@dhhs.nc.gov