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How to Start an Adult Foster Care Home in Michigan

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According to the Michigan Department of Human Services, individuals wishing to open an adult foster care home must apply and be approved for a license, which may take from 6 to 12 months to process and approve. You can establish a family home for up to 6 adults, or a group home for a larger population.


Visit the Michigan Department of Human Services web site (see Resources) and download the original application information.

Print and review the Licensing Rules for Adult Foster Care Family Homes, Licensing Rules for Adult Foster Care Group Homes and the 1979 PA 218 prior to mailing the application information.

Complete the application documents online, including the Adult Foster Care Licensing Record Clearance request form, and submit them with the $65 application fee for a family home, or a larger fee for a group home based on the population, to the Michigan Department of Human Services. Several other original documents, listed in "Additional Requirements," must be mailed in as well; mail them as a single package to the following address:

Department of Human Services Bureau of Children and Adult Licensing P.O. Box 30650 Lansing, MI 48909-8150

Complete the application online and

Additional Requirements

Obtain written documentation that each applicant is tuberculosis free by having a physician complete a tuberculosis test.

Draft house guidelines that must be submitted for review and approval.

Create an evacuation plan and write procedures that must be followed in the event of an emergency such as fire, severe weather or medical emergency.

Comply with an environmental inspection of the property and ensure that the property has a septic or private sewage disposal system.

Each license applicant and each person in the household age 18 or older must provide a medical clearance request. Since this request cannot be dated more than 6 months prior to the issuance of the license, hold off on completing this requirement until after you've spoken with a DHS licensing consultant.

As part of the licensing approval process, DHS may determine that it needs additional information, documentation or inspections.


Retain the results of the tuberculosis test, house guidelines and evacuation plan, which must be provided to the consultant at a later date.

Internet Explorer is required to complete the online application form.


Alicia Vaillancourt-Flotte is a graduate of the family studies bachelor degree program at Western Michigan University and is a certified family life educator through the National Council of Family Relations. She has published several how-to guides and articles for Carspace, AllAboutSurrogacy and various other websites.

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