Child Care Regulations in NY
In New York, legal child care programs are required to have a current license or registration. With only a few exceptions, every program that cares for more than two children three hours or more per day must have a current license or registration certificate. When you visit a regulated child care facility, ask to see the license or registration certificate. Providers who work in regulated programs have had extensive background checks, and are required to follow a set of regulations set by NYS.
The regulations are in place to make sure your child is being cared for in a safe and healthy environment. Registered and licensed programs are also periodically inspected to make sure they are in compliance with the regulations. We encourage families to have a basic understanding of the regulations so you can know if your child’s provider is meeting the minimum health & safety standards. They are available on the Office of Children & Family Services’ website for you to download and read.
Checking Inspection & Compliance History
We recommend you check a program's inspection & compliance history. You can find this on the Office of Children & Family Services’ website. This includes any regulatory violations and current compliance status for those violations.
To search for a program's inspection & compliance history:
- Visit OCFS's website: http://ocfs.ny.gov/main/childcare/ccfs_template.asp
- Enter program details and click “find day care”
- Click this icon for program information, including inspection & compliance history
Concerns & Complaints
Anyone can file a complaint of a possible regulatory violation in a day care center, group family day care, family day care, or school age child care program. If you think a person or program is operating without the proper license or registration certificate, this is also a basis for making a complaint. Your complaint will be investigated, and if it is substantiated, staff will work with the provider to correct any violations.
To file a complaint call any of the following between 8:30 AM - 4:30 PM, Monday - Friday:
Child Care Solutions: (315) 446-1220
Syracuse Regional Office: (315) 423-1202
Office of Children & Family Services (toll-free line): (800) 732-5207