Find a
Nursing Home
Residential Care
/ Assisted Living
CCRCs Medi-Cal for
Long Term Care
Elder Abuse
/ Financial Abuse
Find Elder Abuse Attorneys in CA

Residential Care / Assisted Living:
How to Find and Evaluate RCFEs


How to Evaluate RCFEs

Use the RCFE Fact Sheet Evaluation Checklist. As part of your evaluation, review survey and complaint information.

Review Inspection & Complaint Information

Unfortunately, the Department of Social Services, Community Care Licensing (CCL) does not yet provide inspection reports and complaint information on Residential Care Facilities for the Elderly in an electronic format that can be used to make such vital information readily available to consumers and consumer advocates. However, information on the most recent inspection reports and any complaints that were substantiated by CCL should be made available at each RCFE upon request.

The local district licensing office has a complete file on each facility. To find your local district licensing office, visit http://www.ccld.ca.gov/res/pdf/ASC.pdf (pdf). Call and make an appointment to review the public file on facilities that you are particularly interested in. Some of the documents that you want to review are:

  • Most recent inspection report.
  • Complaints within the past two to three years. Pay special attention to violations of resident rights or any abuse violations.
  • Review the Plan of Operation, especially the section that deals with special services, e.g., dementia or hospice care, activity programs, and staffing.
  • Check the waiver application and approval for hospice care.
  • Request to see the "Advisory Notes." Advisory Notes are a form of written consultation provided by the licensing evaluator to the facility. Although advisory notes are not considered citations, they sometimes offer insight into the overall pattern of a facility's management and operating practices.

You might also consider speaking with the licensing evaluator assigned to the facility or facilities that you are particularly interested in entering or placing a loved one.

Contact the local Ombudsman Office: (Call 1-800-231-4024 or visit the web site at www.aging.ca.gov/programs/ltcop/) The Ombudsman might also have licensing information and other information on the facilities that you are interested in.