Illinois Life Care Facilities Program

In response to growing national concerns regarding the financial stability of facilities offering residency and health care to the elderly, the Illinois General Assembly enacted the Illinois Life Care Facilities Act (210 ILCS 40/1 et seq.) in 1982.

The act authorizes the Illinois Department of Public Health to regulate residency agreements, referred to as “Life Care Contracts,” that require an entrance fee and include personal, nursing, or medical care, in addition to the residency arrangement.

The Department performs its regulatory function under the provisions of the act and the administrative rules promulgated to implement the act, the Illinois Life Care Facilities Contract Code (77 Ill. Adm. Code 396).

The act empowers the Department to issue permits allowing facilities to enter into Life Care Contracts, and charges the Department with responsibility for monitoring those facilities for compliance with the act and the code.

At present, approximately 100 facilities or campus communities in Illinois hold one or more permits to offer and to enter into Life Care Contracts issued by the Department. In all, these facilities and campus communities encompass more than 23,000 living units that can be occupied under life care contracts. Most Illinois life care facilities and campus communities are located within the greater Chicago metropolitan area.

To find out if a particular facility currently holds a permit to offer and to enter into life care contracts, contact the Illinois Life Care Program. Be sure to include the name and address of the facility.

Beyond meeting the requirements of the act, life care contracts exhibit a variety of terms, conditions, and amenities. Please refer to the Frequently Asked Questions for further information.

IDPH regulates life care facilities by:
Life care contracts must:
Life care facilities must comply by:
  • Reviewing applications for life care permits
  • Issuing permits when appropriate
  • Monitoring facility financial statements and compliance with the act and code
  • Managing the utilization of debt reserves of facilities in financial distress
  • Contain provisions for maintenance services, as well as one of the following: personal, nursing or medical services
  • Require an entrance fee
  • Cover a term longer than 12 months
  • Include a 14-day rescission period
  • Obtaining a life care permit
  • Establishing a debt reserve fund as described by the act
  • Providing a financial disclosure statement to residents
  • Providing annual audited financial statements to the Department

Links to Additional Life Care Information

Life Care Facilities Act
Life Care Facilities Administrative Code
Permit Application
2012 Facilities Survey Results
Alzheimer’s Disclosure
Questions or Comments
Escrow Agreement Sample
Letter of Credit Sample


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Illinois Department of Public Health
Office of Policy, Planning and Statistics
525 W. Jefferson St., Second Floor
Springfield, IL 62761
Phone 217-785-2040
Fax 217-785-4308
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