Contact your local Health and Social Care Trust (HSCT) to apply for registration as a childminder, or to provide day care services.

You must register to look after children:

  • under 12 for more than 2 hours a day
  • you’re not related to
  • in a private home
  • if you’re running any type of day care service that’s not charging money, such as a playscheme or out-of-school club

All the adults living or working at the home where you’re based must also register.

You don’t have to register to do babysitting.

Start now on the Health and Social Care website

More Information

Download ‘The Children Order: a guide to help you with registration’ (PDF, 54KB)’

What happens next

Once you’ve submitted your application the HSCT will:

  • ask you to attend an information session
  • check your references
  • carry out checks on you with your doctor, your council and the Criminal Disclosure Service
  • do checks on anyone else who will be living or working at the home
  • inspect the home

Getting your registration

If you’re approved, you will receive a certificate that shows you’re a registered childminder. This usually takes between 2 and 3 months.

Displaying your certificate

You must keep your certificate of registration - or a copy of it - where it can be easily seen.

Fines and penalties

If you don’t register as a childminder, you can be fined £5,000, sent to prison, or both.