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Babysitting Laws in Florida

by Ali Joley

Whether you are looking for a babysitter or looking to become one, it is imperative that you understand and comply with the local babysitting laws. According to the Florida Department of State, Florida has set babysitting laws to abide by.

Age and Background Requirements

Babysitters must be no younger than 16. Florida requires babysitters to be screened by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. The agency will do a name check, check for child abuse and neglect records and a run a local criminal check.

Suitability Check

A licensed out-of-home caregiver must ensure the babysitter is suitable for the age, behavior, and developmental level of the children being supervised.

Protocol Orientation

The babysitter is required to get an orientation from the licensed out-of-home caregiver that covers protocol for emergencies, discipline and confidentiality.

Babysitting Foster Children

A legal child, relative, or neighbor of the licensed out-of-home caregiver can babysit foster children, if the caregiver determines them to be sufficient and reliable.

Age Limitations

Babysitters between the age of 16 and 18 cannot babysit more than three children.

Time Limits

Babysitting is limited to less than 24 hours in duration.

Policy on Foster Children as Babysitters

Foster children are not allowed to babysit other children in the foster home.

Parents are obligated to provide the babysitter important information such as telephone numbers in case of an emergency; medical authorization and instructions on seeking medical care; medications, instructions for administering, and the log for recording proper administration of the medications; physician’s name and telephone number; school; Medicaid number; and medical, physical or behavioral concerns.

About the Author

Ali Joley began writing in 2006. She has written Intelligence reports for the U.S. Air Force and has been certified in Intelligence writing by the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency. Her work also appears on Answerbag and eHow. Joley has an Associate of Science in communications applications technology from the Community College of the Air Force

Photo Credits

  • baby-sitters poster image by robert mobley from Fotolia.com