Food Safety Fact Sheet

How to obtain your Food
Service Sanitation Manager Certification

Q: How can I obtain food service sanitation manager certification (FSSMC) in Illinois?


In Illinois, there are three ways a person can be certified as a food service sanitation manager:

  1. Complete a Department approved 15-hour FSSMC course, successfully pass a state examination with a score of at least 75 percent and pay a $35 certificate fee to the Illinois Department of Public Health.
  2. Obtain a written waiver from IDPH for a course you have taken elsewhere. Then, complete the Illinois FSSMC examination with a score of at least 75 percent and pay the $35 certificate fee to IDPH. A person may qualify for a course waiver if he/she has completed a course that was at least 15 hours in length and contained, at a minimum, the same material content as the Illinois course. The course must have been completed within the last five years.
  3. Qualify for a certificate through reciprocity. If a person holds a food service manager certificate issued by the Chicago Department of Public Health, submit a copy, along with a completed FSSMC request form, to IDPH and ask that an Illinois food service sanitation manager certificate be issued through reciprocity. Send no money with the FSSMC request form. After the Department verifies the authenticity of your certificate from the city of Chicago, you will be mailed a FSSMC application, which should be completed and returned to IDPH along with the $35 certificate fee.

Q: What do I have to submit to IDPH to obtain a waiver for a course I completed in another state?


  1. 1. Submit a copy of the certificate of completion or a copy of the grade report for the course and a copy of the course agenda or syllabus. If you completed a 15-hour ServSafe course, submit only the certificate of completion (no agenda or syllabus is required).
  2. 2. Provide the name and address of the instructor and the company or institution where the course was completed.
  3. 3. Include your name, current home address and a daytime telephone number where you may be reached. It is frequently difficult to verify your status through colleges, universities, ServSafe or others without additional identification – such as social security number.
  4. 4. Send all of the above information to –

Illinois Department of Public Health
Division of Food, Drugs and Dairies
525 W. Jefferson St.
Springfield, IL 62761-0001