Residential Care Facilities for the Elderly (RCFEs)

A guide to RCFEs by our San Diego residential care facility lawyers

A Residential Care Facility for the Elderly (RCFE) is a non-medical housing facility that caters to elder residents who need assistance with activities of daily living such as eating, grooming, hygiene, taking medications, assistance with walking, toileting and other daily tasks. Such arrangements are usually entered into by the resident, the resident’s guardian, conservator or other responsible person, but before admission such placement must be qualified by a physician as an appropriate placement. This type of housing arrangement is only appropriate when the resident has minimal health care issues. If you are unsure of whether or not such a facility is the right choice for yourself or a family member, contact our California residential care facility lawyers and we can help you decide.

Typically, 75 percent of the residents who reside in an RCFE are sixty years of age or older, and varying levels of care and supervision to each resident, as agreed to at time of the admission or as determined necessary at subsequent times of reappraisal. Residents under the age of sixty are permitted, and are usually individuals who cannot care for themselves due to developmental or physical disabilities.

The key distinction between nursing homes and RCFEs is that, while residents of RCFEs may be unable to live by themselves, they do not require skilled nursing care. RCFEs are considered to be non-medical facilities, and are not required to have nurses, certified nursing assistants or doctors on staff. Other terms often used to refer to this level of care are: assisted living facilities, board and care homes, rest homes and that component of Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRCs) that provides attentive personal care and supervision. Those who require actual skilled nursing care are generally not permitted for residency at an RCFE.

RCFEs are licensed and supervised by the California Department of Social Service, Community Care Licensing Division. RCFEs are listed on the California Department of Social Services’ CCL website,, which is updated weekly.

How our San Diego residential care facility lawyers can help if you have been a victim of elder abuse or neglect

If you or someone you love has been seriously hurt or injured as a result of elder abuse or elder neglect in a residential care facility, you may be entitled to seek compensation by filing a lawsuit under the California Elder Abuse Act. Contact a San Diego Elder Abuse Act attorney at our firm today for a free consultation to see if you have a case worth pursuing.