Homemaker-companion agencies must be registered with the Department of Consumer Protection
before engaging in business in Connecticut.
Law and Regulation
In order for the Department to consider an application for a homemaker companion agency, a fully executed application, including registration fee must be received by the Department. The annual registration fee is $375. Note that a homemaker companion agency is required to maintain a surety bond. All registrations expire annually on October 31st. If you are unable to access this form for any reason, you may request a paper copy from the Department of Consumer Protection.
Homemaker Companion Agency Application and Instructions
Agencies Subject to Registration
A homemaker-companion agency is defined as:
"...any public or private organization, employing one or more persons that is engaged in the business of providing companion services or homemaker services. Homemaker-companion agency shall not include a home health care agency, as defined in subsection (d) of section 19a-490 of the general statutes, or a homemaker-home health aide agency, as defined in subsection (e) of section 19a-490 of the general statutes."
The term “Employee” means
“any person employed by, or who enters into a contract to perform services for, a homemaker –companion agency, including, but not limited to, temporary employees, pool employees and independent contractors (emphasis added).”
The term "Companion services" means:
"...nonmedical, basic supervision services to ensure the well-being and safety of a person in such person's home."
The Commissioner of Consumer Protection may revoke, suspend or refuse to issue or renew any certificate of registration as a homemaker-companion agency or place an agency on probation or issue a letter of reprimand for:
(A) Conduct by the agency, of a character likely to mislead, deceive or defraud the public or the Commissioner; or
(B) engaging in any untruthful or misleading advertising.
Each registered agency must: (1) Exhibit the agency's certificate of registration upon request by any interested party, (2) state in any advertisement the fact that the agency is registered, and (3) include the agency's registration number in any advertisement.
Note that those agencies that are licensed by DPH should take caution as to the services they provide. Federal regulations and the Public Health code may require that homemaker companion services be provided by a separate entity. As such any home health care agency or homemaker-home health aide agency performing homemaker companion services should form a separate entity and become registered as homemaker companion agency.
Employee Hiring Policies
Before hiring its staff, the agency must conduct a comprehensive background check of all its employees, and must require the employee to complete and sign a form which contains questions as to whether the current or prospective employee was convicted of a crime involving violence or dishonesty in a state court or federal court in any state; or was subject to any decision imposing disciplinary action by a licensing agency in any state, the District of Columbia, a United States possession or territory or a foreign jurisdiction.
The form signed by the employee and comprehensive background check shall be maintained for each agency employee for inspection by the Department of Consumer Protection. The certification by each employee shall read:
"I certify that the statements made by me on this application are true and complete to the best of my knowledge and are made in good faith. I understand that if I knowingly make any misstatements of fact, I am subject to disqualification, dismissal, or other action pursuant to employment agency policy and procedure, and subject to criminal penalties as prescribed by law."
(Regulation Section 20-670-2(a))
Homemaker companion agencies may wish to review the standards and guidelines set forth in Connecticut General Statutes Section 46a-80 to determine the suitability of applicants for employment.
Client Service Agreements
(a) A written contract or service plan shall be provided by the agency to the client, and a copy shall be kept by the Homemaker-Companion Agency. The agency shall not enforce the written contract or service plan unless it is signed by both the agency and client.
(b) Written contracts or service plans shall:
1. provide a list of the anticipated services to be provided by the agency to the client, the term and cost of said services, a clear definition of the employee, provider and client employment relationship, safeguards for securing personal client information, a list of provider job categories such as “live-in” or “daily call,” and job duties;
2. contain the homemaker-companion agency policy for the acceptance of gratuities and gifts by the homemaker-companion agency’s employees and independent contractors on behalf of the client; and
3. contain a process for the client to file a complaint with the homemaker-companion agency. A process shall be made available for individuals other than a client to file a complaint
(Regulation Section 20-670-3)
Client Contact, Supervision, and Records
(a) The homemaker-companion agency shall provide the client with a contact phone number and address for the agency and an authorized representative to discuss the service being provided.
(b) Narrative notes of a substantive nature shall be kept with each client’s file and shall include observations, problems, complaints, plans of action, telephone contacts, reports of in home visits by supervisors, and the findings of all investigations.
(Regulation Section 20-670-4)