What is the ICPC?

The Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children (ICPC) is law in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and the Virgin Islands to make sure children who are moved from one state to another are offered the same protection and services. It also guarantees legal and financial protection for the child once they move states.

Who is protected by the ICPC?

The ICPC protects children who are:

  • Wards of the court and are being placed with a parent, relative, group home, and/or residential treatment facility
  • Entering foster care or a placement with a goal of adoption
  • To be placed in a group home and/or residential treatment facility by a legal guardian
  • Placed by a legal guardian with a person outside of the third degree of relationship
  • Adjudicated delinquents for placement in a group home and/or residential treatment facility

The ICPC does not apply to placement of children into any institution caring for the mentally ill, defective or epileptic, or any primarily educational institution, hospital, or other medical facility.

How does it work?

When a child is placed in another state, the child’s home state is considered the “sending agency.” The ICPC allows the sending agency to complete home studies in the state the child will move to prior to placement. This helps make sure that the child’s new home is in the best interest of the child, and that all laws and policies are followed prior to approving placement.

The sending agency also has the opportunity to supervise and get regular reports on the child’s adjustment and progress in their new placement.