Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children

The Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children (ICPC) is a law that has been enacted by all 50 states, the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands. This law establishes orderly procedures for the interstate placement of children and fixes responsibilities for those involved in placing the child. 

Colorado decentralized its ICPC function to 64 local county departments of social/human services. CDHS has delegated the responsibility and functions associated with interstate placements requests to local county departments of social services. Each county has an ICPC liaison that processes and monitors interstate placements. ICPC includes referrals on parents, relatives, foster parents, adoptive parents and residential treatment facilities.  To contact the ICPC liaison from a county, see listing of Colorado County ICPC Liaisons. Contact the Division of Child Welfare with questions about ICPC.

Why is a compact needed?

Children placed out of state need to be assured of the same protection and services that would be provided if they remained in their home state. They must also be assured of a return to their original jurisdiction should the placement prove not to be in their best interest.

Who can initiate the Interstate Compact?

Persons who can initiate Interstate Compact referrals are private individuals, the court, child placement agencies, adoption agencies, and public agencies.

Types of placements covered under the ICPC when a child is under the jurisdiction of a county department, court or child placement agency:

  • Parent
  • Relative
  • Foster
  • Adoptive
  • Group home
  • Residential facilities
  • Article VI (adjudicated delinquents) with private institution

Types of placements excluded from the ICPC:

  • Boarding schools
  • Medical facilities and hospitals
  • Mental health facilities
  • Parent to relative when parent or relative has custody (Article VIII)
  • Job corps
  • Military
  • Visits up to 30 days and during summer school vacation with court approval.

Association of Administrators of the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children

The Association of Administrators of the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children (AAICPC) was established in 1974 and consists of members from all 50 states, including Colorado, as well as the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The AAICPC has authority under ICPC to “promulgate rules and regulations to carry out more effectively the terms and provisions of this compact.” The AAICPC obtains its Secretariat Services, as an affiliate of the American Public Human Services Association (APHSA).

For more information on the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children, visit the Association of Administrators of the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children (AAICPC) website. The website features: 

ICPC in Colorado 

The ICPC law contains ten articles that define the types of placements and placers subject to the law, the procedures to be followed in making an interstate placement; and the specific protections, services, and requirements brought by enactment of the law. In Colorado, the Interstate Compact law is found in the Colorado Revised Statutes CRS 24-60-1801. 

Colorado’s policy and procedures manual for child welfare services on the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children, see Volume 7.307.

All public agency ICPC requests should be forwarded directly to the appropriate local county department of social services. A listing of authorized local county ICPC liaisons is maintained and updated regularly by both Colorado and APHSA’s AAICPC on the state.  All inquiries and correspondence regarding specific cases should be directed to the appropriate local county ICPC liaison.  The Colorado ICPC office will continue to process incoming residential placement requests, parents requests, court requests, probation requests, and requests originated by a public entity and when a private child placement agency is performing services in Colorado.

Information about Colorado specific procedures, requirements, and interpretations and application of the ICPC should be obtained from the Division of Child Welfare.