Dakota County Community Services Division

Child Foster Care (CFC) Licensing

The local county office that oversees licenses for child foster care. Foster care is a temporary safe family home for children who have been placed by a court order or a voluntary placement agreement.


Families are needed to open their homes to children needing a temporary place to live. Placements vary in length. Foster care providers become part of the agency team that works closely to meet the child's needs, and that works with the child's parents toward the goal of reunification or finding permanency for the child if the child is unable to be reunified with their family.

Child foster care includes foster family settings, where the license holder lives in the foster home; and foster residence settings where the license holder does not live in the home.

Minnesota rules establish minimum standards for licensed child foster care programs. These rules include, but are not limited to:

  • The licensing process
  • Capacity limits
  • Foster home physical environment
  • Foster home safety
  • License holder qualifications
  • Foster parent training
  • Placement/continued stay/discharge of foster children
  • Respite and substitute care for foster family settings
  • Requirements for what records must be provided to the licensing agency.

Additional requirements for foster residence settings include:

  • Staff training requirements
  • Staffing pattern and personnel policy requirements
  • Communication and documentation requirements
  • Admission/treatment/discharge requirements

The rule includes additional requirements for license holders providing treatment foster care, such as additional experience, training and limits on capacity.


To become licensed as a child foster care provider the applicant must meet minimum licensing standards, including but not limited to:

  • Reside in the county in a home that meets all requirements on a home safety checklist and complies with applicable fire, health, building and zoning codes
  • Be at least 21 years of age
  • Must complete required background checks on all required persons and household members who are 13 years of age or older
  • Provide statements from the applicant(s) and all household members that they are receiving all necessary medical care and are physically able to care for foster children, and that they have been free of chemical use problems for the previous two years
  • Provide statements from the applicant(s) that they have been free of chemical abuse problems for the past two years
  • Provide 3 references
  • Have bedroom space available for foster children
  • Participate in a home study of the family
  • Meet required training hours annually

Application Instructions

Call your county social services department or licensed child placing agency.


There are no fees for this service.


14955 Galaxie Ave, Apple Valley, MN, 55124

Area Served

Dakota County

Phone Numbers

  • Primary Contact for this program: 952-891-7400
  • Main: 952-891-7500



Business Hours

8:00am - 4:30pm, Monday - Friday


Other Services at this Location

  • Adult Mental Health Crisis Response Services Immediate help for people having urgent problems with depression, panic, anxiety, delusions, or other mood or behavior disorders
  • Child and Teen Checkups Coordinators connect individuals to well-child care and screenings for eligible newborns, children and young adults
  • Child Support Services (CSS) The Minnesota Department of Human Services Child Support Division and county child support agencies work with both parents to establish and enforce child support court orders.
  • Children's Mental Health Crisis Response Services (CRS) Professional help 24/7 for children or youth experiencing a mental health crisis to help the child be safe, stay in their home, and get connected to support
  • County Programs for Families Apply for county programs that provide financial assistance and supportive resources to families
  • Parent Support Outreach Program (PSOP) A voluntary, early intervention service that focuses on helping expecting and parenting at-risk families thrive.
  • Public Health Clinic Public health departments offer screenings, health education and wellness services
  • WIC - Supplemental Nutrition Program A nutrition and breastfeeding program that helps young families eat well and be healthy. Learn about nutrition during pregnancy and feeding your baby and young children; meet breastfeeding goals; and buy healthy food using your WIC card.

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