Child Care Licensing


Child Care Providers are required to be licensed by the State of Minnesota Department of Human Services if they provide daycare services beyond what is allowed as a legally unlicensed child care provider. If interested in becoming a licensed daycare provider please contact the Nicollet County Child Care Licensor.

Rules & Regulations

Licensing rules are outlined in Minnesota Rules, Parts 9502.0300 - 9502.0445 ("Rule 2"), governing licensing of family child care and group family child care. The rules define minimum standards a provider must meet in order to be licensed. These standards relate to caregiver qualifications, caregiver training, license capacity, child/adult ratios, age distribution restrictions, behavior guidance, provider records, activities and equipment, the safety of the physical environment, sanitation and health, and water, food, and nutrition. Licensing regulations can be found in the statute under Minnesota Statutes sections 245A and 245C.

Each Minnesota county acts as a licensing agent for the State of Minnesota to ensure that licensed providers comply with licensing rules. Providers are generally granted a 1-year license when they start daycare and may be granted either a 1-year or a 2-year license thereafter. They are also responsible to investigate any complaints received about a licensed provider.

  1. I am interested in becoming a licensed provider
  2. i am a parent seeking child care
  3. I am a licensed provider

Thank you for your interest in becoming a licensed child care provider. This page contains the information and resources necessary for you to begin the licensing process. Please note that this is information for individuals interested in licensing to provide family child care. Individuals interested in opening a child care center should contact the Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) at: 651-431-6500.