Regulations or guidelines on the age limit for a child to be left home alone or to be allowed to babysit may be set by local or State authorities. Often, however, there are no regulations, or even guidelines. See below on how to find out if your locality has them.
Some helpful guidance on these topics, including examples of guidelines established by selected localities, can be found on the website of the National Child Care Information Center (NCCIC), the Child Care Bureau’s clearinghouse, at the following location: http://nccic.org/faqs/homealone.html
Any questions on this information may be addressed to NCCIC at:
National Child Care Information Center
243 Church Street, NW, 2nd Floor
Vienna, VA 22180
Toll-free phone: 1-800-616-2242
If your locality does have regulations or guidelines, your local child protective agency or child welfare office should have them. These offices are usually under the county or city government listings in your local phone book. You can also obtain contact information for these local agencies by calling, toll-free, the following numbers:
-- National Clearinghouse on Child Abuse and Neglect Information (NCCAN): 1-800-394-3366
NCCAN is part of the Children’s Bureau within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; OR
-- Child Help USA: 1-800-422-4453
Child Help USA is a national organization that provides support to children and their families through a network of over 55,000 emergency, social service, legal and other support resources nationwide.
If you happen to be concerned about the safety of a child in any setting, you may wish to communicate your concerns to your local child protective agency or your local child welfare office. Again, see above for information on how to contact these agencies.