Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

Guardian Login Assistance/Password Reset:

How do I access Guardian?

You may access Guardian by visiting: https://guardian.dss.ca.gov/applicant.

If this is your first time accessing Guardian, you will need to select “Register as a New User” to create a Guardian account for yourself. If you already have a Guardian account, you can enter your User Name and Password. You will then be prompted to create a new application for the agency to which you are applying.

What do I do if I get locked out of my account?

If you enter an incorrect username or password too many times, your account will be locked and you will need to contact GuardianLoginSupport@dss.ca.gov to get your account unlocked.

I cant remember my password, what do I do?

If you have logged into Guardian and set up an account before, you will need to select “ Forgot Password/Unlock”. You will then be prompted to answer your security question. Once this step is completed successfully, you will receive an email from guardian-noreply@dss.ca.gov which will provide a temporary password to reset your password.

If you are still having trouble with logging in, please contact GuardianLoginSupport@dss.ca.gov

Who do I contact for technical assistance?

If you need assistance with your username or password, need to submit a Licensee User Access Form or have been locked out of your account, please email GuardianLoginSupport@dss.ca.gov. Please allow 3-5 business days for a response.

If you need assistance tracking your background check status, have an exemption related question or need general information about Guardian, please email Guardian@dss.ca.gov for assistance or call (888) 422-5669.

Guardian Background Check Questions:

This section pertains to the applicants who choose to use Guardian to assist in their background check. If you are not using Guardian, you may find the answers to your background check related Questions in the Care Provider Management Bureau Background Check Frequently Asked Questions section below.

How do I submit a background check application?

Follow the instructions to “Register As A New User” in Guardian. After entering the Agency PIN, follow the instructions to complete the application process. After the application is completed, a pre-populated Live Scan form will generate to assist with the fingerprint submission.

If you do not use Guardian, you may still submit fingerprints via Live Scan for your prospective employer. If an exemption is needed, you will be notified via U.S. Mail. You may mail your exemption documents back to the Care Provider Management Bureau (CPMB) at 744 P Street, M.S. T9-15-62, Sacramento CA, 95814 or fax to 916-754-4589. If additional information is needed and once an exemption decision is made, you will again be notified via U.S. Mail.

I am going through a background check. How do I know if I am in process, cleared, exempted or denied?

If you have a Guardian account, you may log in to Guardian using your login credentials. If you have not logged into Guardian, you will need to select “Register as a New User” and continue with the application for Guardian. Please enter your Background Check ID # if you know it, along with your Social Security Number and all personal identifying information. After you have successfully registered in Guardian or logged into your existing account, you will see your Home Page with your status.

  • In Process means the background check application was submitted but is still waiting on fingerprints, self-disclosure, Registry Research to be submitted (if CACI, AARS, or OSCA match exists), an LIC 508 form (if for Children's Residential), or is pending a background check process.
  • Eligible means you are cleared or exempted to work. If you are a Home Care Aide or TrustLine applicant, a registration approval letter or registered status in Guardian is required and must be received before you can be a registered Home Care Aide or TrustLine registrant. 
  • Not Eligible means your background check has been denied.

How long does it take to conduct a background check using Guardian?

Once Live Scan fingerprints have been received and your Criminal Record Statement (LIC 508/LIC 508D) have been completed in Guardian, some background check results can be processed in real time. For example, if you have no criminal history and all requirements have been met, a clearance can be processed within a day. If you do have criminal history, background checks can take up to 75 days. It is highly recommended to use Guardian to upload your exemption documents if you do need a Criminal Record Exemption.

How do I upload documents?

You may upload documents by accessing Guardian, where the “Upload Document” button will be available on your home screen. Next, a pop up box will appear which allows you to select the appropriate file. After the document has been uploaded, the Care Provider Management Bureau will receive the document in real time.

How will I know what needs to be submitted in order to proceed with my background check?

If a criminal record exemption is required, an Exemption Needed letter will generate. and be available for viewing. If you have opted in to electronic notifications, you will access this letter in Documents, on the Home Page of your Guardian applicant portal. If you have not opted in to electronic notifications, you will receive this letter via U.S. mail.

How will I receive notifications from Guardian?

If you have chosen to receive notifications from Guardian, these notifications will be provided to you at the email address entered during creation of your account. You may opt in to electronic notifications at any time by accessing your Guardian account and selecting “My Account.”

What happens if I no longer have access to a computer to manage my Guardian portal/account?

If you no longer have access to a computer, you may utilize the Care Provider Management Bureau (CPMB) to manually send in your exemption documents and receive letters via U.S. Mail. You can also call CPMB at 888-422-5669 or email CPMB at guardian@dss.ca.gov to inquire about the status of your exemption. If you choose to no longer utilize Guardian, please update your notification preferences in “My Account.”

What if I want to discontinue receiving notifications from Guardian?

You may opt-out of electronic notifications from Guardian at any time. Access “My Account”, select “Opt Out” and click “Save”.

How do I update my personal information? (change of address, email address, phone number)

You may update your address, email address, phone number and your opt-in/opt-out of electronic notification preferences by accessing “My Account” in Guardian. Only your username cannot be updated. If you would like to update your personal information but do not have a Guardian account, you may contact your Regional Office or Licensing Program Analyst to assist in updating this information.

What if I don’t want to use Guardian?

You may submit exemption documents to and receive paper communications from the Care Provider Management Bureau via U.S. Mail at 744 P Street, M.S. T9-15-62, Sacramento CA, 95814 or by fax to 916-754-4589. You may also track the status of an exemption by communicating with CPMB via phone at 888-422-5669 or email to guardian@dss.ca.gov. If you register as a new user in Guardian and do not want to receive documents electronically, please opt-out of electronic communications during the registration process.

Home Care Aide Registry:

How do I make a payment for my application or application renewal fees?

When submitting your initial application for the Home Care Aide Registry or renewal application as a Home Care Aide in Guardian, you will be prompted to enter payment information as applicable. You may pay by credit or debit card. You will be taken to a third-party payment site (Elavon) to complete this payment.

How do I apply for the Home Care Aide Registry?

To apply to the Home Care Aide Registry you will need to first obtain the Applicant Initiated Form that can be found on the Home Care Services Bureau Webpage, starting in mid-January 2021. Follow the instructions to “Register As A New User” in Guardian. After entering the Agency PIN, follow the instructions to complete the application process. After the application is completed, a pre-populated Live Scan form will generate to assist with the fingerprint submission.

To apply for the Home Care Aide Registry outside of Guardian, you may send in the manual Application for Home Care Aide Registration or Renewal Form (HCS 100), along with a check or money order made payable to the Department of Social Services, to Home Care Services Bureau, 744 P Street, M.S. 9-14-90, Sacramento, CA 95814.

How do I renew my Home Care Aide Registration?

If you have opted in to electronic notifications, you will receive an email when your renewal period is approaching. You will also receive a letter, either in your Guardian portal or via U.S. Mail, which states that your Home Care Aide Registration is expiring and you need to take action to renew your registration.

You may renew your Home Care Aide registration in one of the following ways:

If you are an independent Home Care Aide and use Guardian, you will need to locate the Applicant Instruction Form on the Home Care Services Bureau webpage, that will be available starting in mid-January 2021. Access your Guardian applicant portal to add a new application, enter the PIN number, select the appropriate request types and proceed to payment.

If you are working for a Home Care Organization (HCO), you will need to ask the HCO for their Applicant Instruction Form or Agency PIN. Access your Guardian applicant portal to add a new application, enter the PIN number, select the appropriate request type and proceed to payment.

If you do not use Guardian, you may send your renewal fee and the Application for Home Care Aide Registration or Renewal Form (HCS 100), to Home Care Services Bureau, 744 P Street, M.S. 9-14-90, Sacramento, CA 95814.

What are the Request Types for Home Care Aides in Guardian?

Home Care Aide Registry Initial is for initial Home Care Aide applicants,
Home Care Aide Registry Renewal is for Home Care Aide registrants who need to renew their application and pay the renewal fees.

TrustLine Registry:

How do I apply for the TrustLine Registry?

To apply for the TrustLine Registry in Guardian please obtain the Applicant Instruction Form from the agency in which you are applying to. If you are applying for a subsidized or fee-paying agency, please complete a TLR 9163, which will be available in January 2021, and return it to the Resource and Referral Network. If you need assistance with this, please contact the Resource and Referral Network at TrustLine website or call (800) 822-8490.

Guardian Login Assistance/Password Reset

How do I access Guardian?

You may access Guardian by visiting: The Guardian Agency Portal. If you have already created an account, please use your username and password to log in. If you are new Guardian, please refer to the question “What is a Licensee User Access Form?”.

What is a Licensee User Access Form?

The Licensee User Access Form is used by the Care Provider Management Bureau (CPMB) to establish the Licensee as the initial user of Guardian. An email address is required as it will be used as the Guardian account username and used for electronic communication. Please also list all applicable agencies the user needs access to. The form must be completed by a Licensee and have an original signature in order to be accepted by CPMB. After receipt of the form and account creation by CPMB, the initial user can grant access to other individuals in an agency that may need access to view rosters, employment information, exemption statuses, etc.

What do I do if I get locked out of my account?

If you enter an incorrect username or password too many times, your account will be locked and you will need to contact GuardianLoginSupport@dss.ca.gov to get your account unlocked.

If your Licensee or Director created your Guardian account, they can unlock the account for you by following the user guide Unlocking (Enabling) a User Account.

If I can’t remember my password or am having trouble with my password, what do I do?

If you have already created your Guardian account, select “Forgot Password/Unlock”. You will be prompted to answer one of your pre-established security questions. You will then receive an email from guardian-noreply@dss.ca.gov with a temporary password.

If you are a Licensee and have not submitted your Licensee User Access form for account creation, please do so. Once an account has been created you will receive an email from guardian-noreply@dss.ca.gov that contains a temporary password.

If you are not a Licensee of an agency, please contact your Licensee or main point of contact for your agency to create an account for you. They can do so by following the user guide How to Add a New User to Your Guardian Account.

If you are still having trouble with logging in, please contact GuardianLoginSupport@dss.ca.gov.

Who do I contact for technical assistance?

If you need assistance with your username or password, need to submit a Licensee User Access Form or have been locked out of your account, please email GuardianLoginSupport@dss.ca.gov. Please allow 3-5 business days for a response.

If you need assistance tracking the background check status of an individual, have an exemption related question or need general information about Guardian, please email Guardian@dss.ca.gov or call (888) 422-5669.

Guardian Background Check Questions

This section pertains to those agencies who are using Guardian to perform their background check and roster management functions, as well as those who choose to receive electronic notifications from Guardian.

How can I initiate an application on behalf of an applicant?

An agency can initiate a background check application on behalf of an applicant in Guardian. After the application is complete, a pre-populated Live Scan form will generate for the applicant to submit fingerprints. The applicant will also receive a notification to the email address that was input during the application process, informing them that a Live Scan form is available. It is important to note that the agency must also complete the self-disclosure information for the applicant if an application is initiated on of the applicant’s behalf. The application will not be submitted until the self-disclosure information has been completed. For further information, please refer to the User Guide for Licensing and Home Care Agencies.

How do I answer the self-disclosure questions and upload the LIC 508 for an applicant?

Please access Guardian, locate the “Applications” tab and select “Application Administration” from the drop down list. You must enter the Application ID. Once entered, the individual’s information will appear Please follow the prompts to complete the self-disclosure questions and upload a copy of the signed LIC 508.

How do I check the eligibility of an individual?

Agencies may utilize Guardian to check the eligibility of currently associated individuals and prospective applicants. Access Guardian, locate the “Rosters” tab and search for the individual. Results will display only if the individual is associated to your roster. Eligibility status is summarized in the “Determination” column. If you have further questions, you may email Guardian@dss.ca.gov or call (888) 422-5669.

How can I track the exemption status of a prospective applicant?

If a prospective applicant or currently associated individual requires an exemption, you can track their status by accessing the “Roster” tab and searching for the individual. The “Determination” column will display the status.

  • In Process –  means the background check application was submitted but is still waiting on fingerprints, self-disclosure, Registry Research to be submitted (if CACI, AARS, or OSCA match exists), an LIC 508 form (if for Children's Residential), or is pending a background check process.
  • Eligible – Clearance means the individual did not have to go through the exemption process and has no criminal history, therefore they have been cleared. If the individual is a Home Care Aide or TrustLine applicant, a registration approval letter or registered status in Guardian is required and must be received before the applicant can be a registered Home Care Aide or TrustLine registrant. 
  • Eligible – Exemption Approval means the individual has been granted an exemption and is eligible to work. If the individual is a Home Care Aide or TrustLine applicant, a registration approval letter or registered status in Guardian is required and must be received before the applicant can be a registered Home Care Aide or TrustLine registrant. 
  • Eligible – Exemption Approval – Conditional means the individual has been granted an exemption and is eligible to work with a condition. If the individual is a Home Care Aide or TrustLine applicant, a registration approval letter or registered status in Guardian is required and must be received before the applicant can be a registered Home Care Aide or TrustLine registrant. 
  • Not Eligible – Exemption Denial means the individual has been denied their exemption and is not eligible to work in, reside in or be present in an agency licensed by the Department of Social Services.

How long does it take to conduct a background check using Guardian?

After Live Scan Fingerprints and a Criminal Record Statement (LIC 508/LIC 508D) have been completed in Guardian, some background check results can be processed in real time. For example, if the individual has no criminal history and all requirements have been met, a clearance can be processed within a day. If the individual does have criminal history or information which requires further research by the Care Provider Management Bureau, background checks can take up to 75 days. It is highly recommended to use Guardian to upload any exemption documents for the individual if they do need a Criminal Record Exemption.

How will I receive notifications from Guardian?

As an agency with a Guardian account, you are opted into electronic notifications upon registration for Guardian. You will receive notifications for various reasons regarding the background check process for individuals associated to your agency. Some of those reasons may be fingerprints for an applicant are almost due, a self-disclosure needs to be completed for an individual, you have a document available in your agency portal or a decision has been made for an individual. If you wish to receive letters via U.S. Mail, you can opt-out of electronic notifications at any time by accessing My Account in the upper right corner of your Home Screen and adjusting the preferences for receiving notifications.

How do I manage my employee roster?

You may manage your employee roster in real time by accessing the “Rosters” tab in Guardian. Select the appropriate agency and edit the association for any individual by selecting the “Edit” button in the “Actions” column. For further instruction, please refer to the User Guide for Licensing and Home Care Agencies.

How can I disassociate (separate) an employee?

Disassociations in Guardian take place in real time. You may clean up your roster, disassociate (separate) individuals who should no longer work be associated to your agency and remove individuals from your roster who have been denied exemptions. You may disassociate individuals from your agency in Guardian by following the User Guide for Licensing and Home Care Agencies. Disassociation (separation) dates cannot be backdated.

Will I still receive my Roster Report (LIS 555) from my Regional Office?

Guardian will replace the report that your Licensing Program Analyst provides to you yearly now that you will be able to view and manage your roster in real time.

How can I initiate a transfer of someone who is associated to another agency?

Guardian allows you to transfer (connect) an in-process, cleared or exempted individual to a your agency in real time. If you have multiple agencies in Guardian and want an individual to connect from one agency to another, please refer to the User Guide for Licensing and Home Care Agencies. Alternatively, a Criminal Record Exemption Transfer Request form (LIC 9188) can be emailed to guardian@dss.ca.gov, faxed to 916-754-4589 or mailed to Care Provider Management Bureau, 744 P Street, M.S. T9-15-62, Sacramento CA, 95814.

How do I upload documents into Guardian on an applicant’s behalf?

If you have an applicant that does not use Guardian or asks you to upload their exemption documents for them, you are able to do so by following the User Guide for Licensing and Home Care Agencies.

Who do I contact for technical assistance?

If you need assistance with your username or password, need to submit a Licensee User Access Form or have been locked out of your account, please email GuardianLoginSupport@dss.ca.gov. Please allow 3-5 business days for a response.

If you need assistance tracking your exemption status, have an exemption related question or need general information about Guardian, please email Guardian@dss.ca.gov or call (888) 422-5669.