Licensing Manuals

The Licensing Manuals are used as a reference for Office of Child Care (OCC) licensing staff, licensed and registered child care providers, and for those who apply to become child care providers.  Each Manual primarily provides assistance in interpreting and applying Code Of Maryland Regulation (COMAR) requirements when conducting compliance inspections of child care facilities. By providing a comprehensive set of interpretive guidelines, the Manuals enable licensing staff and child care providers to assess compliance in a consistent and equitable manner.  

Contents and Use of the Manuals

Each Manual is divided into chapters. Each chapter corresponds to the chapter number and subtitle of the related COMAR. Each chapter and subtitle includes the full text of the regulations found in that subsection of the chapter, the intent of the regulation, the method by which compliance with the regulation is assessed, and reference notes, as applicable. The text of each regulation appears in bold type. The guidance information appears in italics.

The Intent explains the regulation in more detail and the reason for the regulation.

The Inspection Report Item refers to the exact location on the Electronic Licensing Inspection System (ELIS) inspection form, or the paper Inspection Report where compliance or noncompliance with the regulation is recorded during an inspection. 

The Compliance Criteria set forth the specific elements that OCC licensing staff will use in determining whether or not the inspection report item is in compliance.

The Assessment Method addresses the means by which licensing staff will evaluate the compliance criteria.

The Notes provide further details, explanations, or reference to resource materials and/or forms. Some of the “Notes” have been included only to give additional helpful information.

The referenced Forms and Resource Documents are easily accessed on the Licensing Branch website in the “Forms” and “Resource Documents” locations.

Each Manual has a section titled, Title Page and Master Table of Contents (listing all chapters) to be used if you desire to bind all sections of the Manual into a notebook.

Click the desired manual below:

Child Care Center Licensing Manual                                  for COMAR 13A.16 - Chapters .01 - .19

Family Child Care Registration Manual                             for COMAR 13A.15 - Chapters .01 - .15

Letters of Compliance Manual                                            for COMAR 13A.17 - Chapters .01 - .17

Large Family Child Care Home Manual                              for COMAR 13A.18 - Chapters .01 - .16    

Protocol for Licensing Inspections