Office of Children and Family Services

Family Type Homes for Adults

How To Apply To Operate an FTHA

To start an FTHA, an application must be submitted to the local district FTHA coordinator, as well as supporting documentation including references; an income statement; a statement of the applicant's education, experience, and community activities; a statement from a physician regarding the health of the applicant and others. Some of these can be submitted within 90 days of submitting the application; some must accompany the application. Contact the FTHA coordinator to get started and for further information.

Once all documentation is received, the local district will review and make a recommendation for acceptance or denial. The application is then forwarded to OCFS for final review. If OCFS approves the application, an operating certificate will be issued authorizing the applicant to begin operating as a FTHA. If the application is denied, the applicant has a right to an administrative hearing to appeal the denial.

Additional Questions Applicants to Become FTHA Operators May Have

Are FTHAs inspected?

FTHAs are visited for inspection purposes at least annually by local districts. The local districts may make more frequent inspections. These visits are usually unannounced. The required annual complete inspection must be unannounced. An inspection report is provided to the operator. The report lists any areas of non-compliance and a timetable for correction.

FTHAs are also subject to inspection by OCFS staff.

In certain cases homes are subject to inspections/investigations of the New York State Justice Center for the Protection of People with Special Needs. See below for further details.

Can I get funding from the government to start an FTHA?

Government funding is not provided to start an FTHA.

How are residents chosen for an FTHA?

Residents are referred by hospitals, doctors, rehabilitation centers, public and private agencies, friends and neighbors, and your local social services district when appropriate. Operators do their own marketing. Residents are not provided by either the local district or OCFS.

Prospective residents and the operators of the home must meet to ensure an appropriate and compatible placement. Prospective residents are also required to have a medical evaluation prior to admittance.

What happens if a resident requires a higher level of care?

If, at some point during their stay at an FTHA, a resident requires a higher level of care, the operator of the home will work with the resident, the resident’s family, and the local district to find a more appropriate care setting.

Can someone else run my home if I am away or sick?

An authorized caregiver must always be at a family-type home. Whenever an operator is going to be away, there needs to be a substitute caregiver approved in advance by the local district.

The application to become an FTHA operator requires the name, address, and qualifications of the proposed substitute caretaker(s). Any proposed substitute caretaker who is going to provide 20 or more hours of care per week will need a physician's statement indicating that the substitute is physically and mentally capable of providing adequate care to dependent adults.

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