Residential Treatment Facilities


Jack Plagge, Manager
Hospital & Outpatient Services Unit

Bureau of Health Facility Regulation
2727 Mahan Drive, Mail Stop #31
Tallahassee, Florida 32308
Telephone: (850) 412-4549
Florida Relay Service (TDD): (800) 955-8771
Email: hospitals@ahca.myflorida.com

Residential Treatment Facilities (RTF) are licensed community-based residences for individuals exhibiting symptoms of mental illness who are in need of a structured living environment. Residents are limited to those 18 years of age or over. These facilities were designed to provide long-term residential care with an overlay or coordination of mental health services. A state license covers five levels of care that range from having nurses on staff for 24 hours a day to independent apartment residences that receive only weekly staff contact.

Health Facility Reporting System

Health Facility Reporting SystemThe Agency for Health Care Administration (Agency) requires all licensees providing residential or inpatient services to use an Agency approved database for reporting its emergency status, planning or operations. The Agency approved database for reporting this information is the Health Facility Reporting System (HFRS).




Online Applications – In addition to submitting license renewal applications online, licensees may also submit changes during the licensure period. Changes to the fictitious name, address, capacity, and personnel can be submitted by going to the online portal and creating a new application.  Contact the licensure unit for additional information.

Licensure Requirements

Facilities must meet license requirements through the submission of a completed application, required documentation, and completion of a satisfactory survey.

Initial Application

This includes new facilities and reactivation of an expired license.  At least 60 days prior to the effective date, an applicant must submit a licensure application, fees and supporting documents.  When all required information is received and acceptable, a licensure survey will be scheduled.  A license will be issued when documentation of a successful licensure survey is complete and filed.  Note: A valid license is required before services can be provided.


The licensure application, renewal fee and supporting documents must be submitted to the Agency 120 to 60 days prior to the expiration date. A late fee of $50 per day, up to 50% of the licensure fee or $500 (whichever is less) will be assessed for any application not received 60 days prior to expiration. A renewal application will not be accepted if the license is expired. An initial license application must be filed if the license has expired.

Change of Ownership (CHOW)

Chapter 408.803, F.S. defines "Change of ownership" as: an event in which 51 percent or more of the ownership, shares, membership, or controlling interest of a licensee is in any manner transferred or otherwise assigned. This does not apply to a licensee that is publicly traded on a recognized stock exchange. Also, a change solely in the management company or board of directors is not a change of ownership.

The licensure application, fee and supporting documents (see application checklist) must be submitted at least 60 days prior to the change of ownership. Before the application can be approved, any outstanding fees owed the State (owed by either party) must be paid and a bill of sale or other closing document signed by the buyer and the seller and showing the effective date of the transfer must be received by the Agency.

Other Change During the Licensure Period

A change of physical address requires submission of an application and documentation verifying the applicant’s right to occupy the premises at the new address (i.e. warranty or quit claim deed; lease or rental agreement.).

A bed change requires submission of an application. If adding beds to the current license, the per bed license fee must accompany the application. A license authorizing the additional beds will be issued when all documentation is received. Please note a valid license is required before the additional beds can be utilized.

Voluntary Termination of a License

A licensee must inform the agency not less than 30 days prior to the discontinuance of operation and comply with the requirements listed in Chapter 408.810(4), Florida Statutes.

Accreditation Requirements

Accreditation is voluntary. Accredited RTFs meeting section 394.741, Florida Statute, may be "deemed" to be in compliance with the licensure requirements. Deemed RTFs are not scheduled for routine on-site licensure surveys. Facilities must provide a complete copy of the most recent survey report indicating continuation as an accredited facility in lieu of inspections. The survey report should include correspondence from the accrediting organization containing:

  • The beginning and expiration dates of the survey,
  • The accreditation status,
  • Type of accreditation,
  • Any citations to which the accreditation organization requires a response,
  • A response to each citation,
  • The effective date of accreditation, and
  • Any follow up reports.

Pursuant to section 394.90, Florida Statute, this report will become part of the facility file maintained by our office and therefore will be considered public record.  Facilities no longer accredited or granted accreditation status other than accredited or fail to submit the requested documentation will be scheduled for annual licensure surveys to be conducted by Agency field office staff.

Statutory Authority: Section 408.811(2) and 394.741, Florida Statutes

Accrediting Organization Web Address Deemed for State Licensure
Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF) http://www.carf.org/ Yes
Council on Accreditation (COA) https://coanet.org/ Yes
The Joint Commission (TJC) http://www.jointcommission.org/ Yes

Applications and Supporting Forms

Form Number Name For Description
AHCA Form 3180-5003

Health Care Licensing Application [339KB, DOC]

All application types Standard application required to apply for or modify a RTF license.
Recommended Form

Application Addendum [127KB, DOC]


Please provide this information to comply with the reporting requirements of Chapter 408, Part II, F.S.
  Business Articles Initial
Articles of Incorporation or similarly titled document as filed with the Florida Department State.
  Proof of Right to Occupy Premises Initial
Change of Address
Any documentation verifying the applicant’s right to occupy the premises at the physical address of the facility (i.e. warrant or quit claim deed; lease or rental agreement).
  Compliance with Zoning Requirements Initial
Change of Address

Any documentation from a local government identifying the facility is in compliance with local zoning requirements.

Local Zoning Form (Levels I-A, I-B, and II) [31KB, PDF]

  Certificate of Occupancy

Initial due to new construction.

Change of address due to new construction.

Specific documentation from a local government granting the right to occupy a facility.

  Management Agreement Initial
(if applicable)
Contract between the owner and a management company for management of services.
  Closing Document CHOW Bill of sale or similar document signed by the buyer and the seller indicating the date of transfer of ownership.
  Statement of Outstanding Deficiencies CHOW Statement from the buyer assuring any uncorrected licensure survey deficiencies will be corrected timely.
  Statement of Outstanding Payments CHOW Statement from the buyer identifying any outstanding balance owed AHCA, and indicating who will pay and when.
  Program Description Initial
Description of program which includes: an outline of the program and services provided; a description of the resident population served; and a staffing pattern description (hours, coverage per shift, number and types of staff), including the names and license or registration number of each licensed or registered person.
  Table of Organization Initial
Table of organization that shows all management levels.
  Resume of Facility Manager Initial
Resume for the individual designated on the application as the facility manager.
  Certificate of Insurance Initial
Certificate of Insurance verifying commercial or general liability insurance coverage (minimum required coverage is $300,000 per incidence and $1 million in aggregate).
  Fire Safety Inspection Report

Change of Address

Satisfactory fire safety inspection report completed in the last 365 days
  Sanitation Inspection Report Initial
Change of Address
Satisfactory sanitation inspection report completed in the last 365 days.
Recommended Form HIV / AIDS Training Affidavit [22 KB, PDF] Initial
HIV / AIDS affidavit assuring required facility staff will be trained.

Licensure Fees

Fee Type Amount Who Pays Due
Initial, renewal or CHOW Application

$191.83 per bed.

Applicant With application.
Capacity Increase

$191.83 per bed.


With application.

Late Application $50 per day, up to 50% of the licensure fee or $500 (whichever is less) Late Applications Required if an application is not received at least 60 days prior to the anticipated effective date. Payment can be made any time during the application process or upon issuance of a final order.

Background Screening

A level 2 background screen is required of the administrator responsible for the day to day operations of the facility and the chief financial officer. Please visit the Agency's background screening web page for additional information regarding vendors, fees, locations etc. Background screens must be repeated every 5 years.

Department of Health Approval for Onsite Sewage Disposal Systems

Statute/Rule Authority