Foster Care FAQ

There are many questions, myths, and misinformation out there around foster care and adoption. Browse a selection of informative videos below answering some of the most frequently asked questions. Have other questions? Contact us at

Frequently Asked Questions – Foster Care

  • Schedule a call with a Family Recruitment Specialist or attend an information meeting


  • The licensing process, on average, takes 4-6 months.

  • We offer training throughout the year. Your specialist will work with you to make sure you are enrolled in training that best suits your schedule.

  • There is no fee to foster one of NC’s waiting children.

  • Be 21 years of age or older

    Legal resident of the U.S. and North Carolina

    Complete 30 hours of training provided by CHS, specifically Trauma Informed Partnering for Safety and Permanence: Model Approach to Partnerships in Parenting (TIPS-MAPP), the North Carolina State recommended pre-certification program for prospective foster and adoptive families. We invite our families to the training after you have completed an application and a first interview has occurred with one of our Specialists.

    Current First Aid/CPR Certification

    Successfully complete of CHS Medication Administration training

    Provide current medicals and Health History for all household members

    Provide an approved Fire Inspection Form facilitated by your local fire department for your home

    Provide certified copies of ALL marriage and divorce verification

    No felony convictions involving child abuse, spouse abuse, crimes involving violence, DWI (within last 5 years)

    No substantiated Child Protective Service Investigations

    Willing to submit to a thorough assessment of your family and home

  • On average, it takes 4-6 months.  This is an average and is dependent on the timely completion of paperwork and other aspects of the process.

  • The training helps you consider:

    • Is fostering/adopting for me?
    • Am I able to attach and bond to a child or children not born to me?
    • Am I able to learn to parent a child who has been neglected and/or abused?
    • What type of child can I successfully parent?

    TIPS-MAPP allows participants to interact with other individuals while affording the opportunity to gain insight into the needs of children who experience the child welfare system and how the child and their birth family are impacted.

    We will help get you all of the training and support you need.

  • Classes are offered throughout the year.

  • Classes are offered throughout the state.

  • Yes, to adopt a child from the foster care system, CHS requires families to be licensed.

  • Your doctor will need to provide documentation that you are able to provide for children and do not have a limited capacity to parent.

  • State law requires NC criminal record checks going back 5 years.  If you have lived in NC for less than 5 years, you will need to obtain out-of-state background checks.

  • Yes, working individuals can be licensed as foster parents.

  • A child’s placement may be for as short as an overnight stay or longer than a year.

  • Yes, CHS foster parents are required to complete a minimum of 12 hours of training each year.

  • No. You have the right to accept or reject any placement.

  • North Carolina requires foster parents to renew their licenses every two years.

  • Complete your application. With the application, CHS will complete a statewide NC criminal record check for all adults residing in your home.  This is required at the time of application and is $20.00 per person.

    You will be called by a CHS staff person and an appointment will be made to meet with you and answer your questions.

    Based on your first interview, you may be invited to a TIPS-MAPP class.

    During TIPS-MAPP, a CHS Specialist will work closely with you while you complete the process.

    Once you have your foster care license and/or approved pre-placement assessment, you will begin learning about waiting children from CHS staff.

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