Utah Administrative Code

The Utah Administrative Code is the body of all effective administrative rules as compiled and organized by the Division of Administrative Rules (see Subsection 63G-3-102(5); see also Sections 63G-3-701 and 702).

NOTE: For a list of rules that have been made effective since January 1, 2020, please see the codification segue page.

NOTE TO RULEFILING AGENCIES: Use the RTF version for submitting rule changes.

R501. Human Services, Administration, Administrative Services, Licensing.

Rule R501-18. Recovery Residence Services.

As in effect on January 1, 2020

Table of Contents

R501-18-1. Authority.

This Rule is authorized by Section 62A-2-101 et seq.

R501-18-2. Purpose.

This rule establishes:

(1) basic health and safety standards for recovery residences; and

(2) minimum administration requirements.

R501-18-3. Definitions.

(1) "Currently Enrolled Client" is an individual who is a participatory resident of the sober living environment of a recovery residence and is also referred to as "Client" in this chapter.

(2) "Manager" is an individual designated in-writing by the director to oversee the day-to-day supervision of staff and clients as well as the overall operation of the facility. The manager or substitute manager cannot be a currently enrolled client.

(3) "Recovery Residence" is as defined in Subsection 62A-2-101(22) and includes a variety of sober living settings.

R501-18-4. Legal Requirements.

(1) A recovery residence shall comply with this R501-18 and:

(a) R501-1, General Provisions;

(b) R501-2, Core Rules;

(c) R501-14 by either:

(i) participating in the background clearances for all staff; or

(ii) obtaining an approval by the Office of Licensing for an exemption as outlined in R501-14.

(d) all applicable local, state, and federal laws.

(2) A recovery residence wishing to offer clinical treatment services, shall comply with R501-19 and obtain a residential treatment license. No clinical treatment shall occur at a recovery residence site.

(3) A recovery residence wishing to offer social detoxification services shall comply with R501-11 and obtain a social detoxification license prior to offering any social detoxification services onsite. No services shall be provided to those in active withdrawl at a recovery residence site.

(4) A recovery residence shall only serve adults.

R501-18-5. Administration.

(1) The recovery residence shall ensure that clients receive supportive services from a person associated with the licensee or from a licensed professional. Supportive services include but are not limited to:

(a) vocational services;

(b) peer support;

(c) skills training;or

(d) community resource referral.

(2) A list of current clients shall be maintained on-site at all times and available to the Department of Human Services Office of Licensing upon request.

R501-18-6. Staffing.

(1) The program shall employ, contract with, or otherwise provide as needed, referral information for client access to the following:

(a) Physician

(b) Psychiatrist

(c) Mental health therapist (LCMHT); or

(d) Substance use disorder counselor (SUDSC).

(2) The recovery residence shall have an identified recovery residence director(s) who shall have:

(a) Utah licensure, in good standing, as a substance use disorder counselor, licensed clinical social worker or equivalent; or

(b) a minimum of 2 years experience in one of the following:

(i) administration of a recovery residence;

(ii) substance use disorder treatment education; or

(iii) recovery/support services education.

(3) The director's responsibilities that shall not be delegated include:

(a) monitoring all aspects of the program and operation of the facility;

(b) policy and procedure development, implementation, compliance and oversight per R501-2 Core Rule requirements and to also include:

(i) clearly defining responsibilities of the director, manager, and staff of the program;

(c) supervision, training and oversight of staff;

(d) overseeing all client activities.

(4) The recovery residence director may manage directly or employ a manager as defined in this chapter, to work under the supervision of the director.

(a) The director shall perform the manager's duties when the manager is on scheduled or unscheduled leave unless the manager designates a manager-substitute.

(5) The director is responsible for maintaining the following documentation for self and all direct service staff:

(a) 40 hours of training completed prior to working with clients and ongoing training sufficient to maintain proficiency in the topics of:

(i) recovery services in substance use disorder settings;

(ii) peer support;

(iii) emergency overdose;

(iv) recognition and response to substance-related activities; and

(v) current certification in First Aid and CPR.

(b) documented training regarding compliance with current licensing rules to include:

(i) R501-1, General Provisions;

(A) including the annual required Licensing Code of Conduct; and

(B) Client Rights;

(ii) R501-2, Core Rules;

(iii) R501-18 Recovery Residence rules; and

(iv) all current program policies and procedures.

(6) The recovery residence shall have a director or manager conduct on-site visits daily in order to ensure client safety and support clients.

(a) Site visits shall be documented per-site, not per-client;

(b) site visits shall assess and document the following:

(i) general safety;

(ii) general cleanliness;

(iii) verification that only admitted residents reside or stay overnight at the residence;

(iv) no presence of alcohol or substances of abuse unless lawfully prescribed; and

(v) medications in locked storage.

(7) The director or manager shall have documented face-to-face or telephone daily contact with each admitted client.

(8) The recovery residence director shall ensure administrative on-call availability at all times and remain able to respond to the recovery residence staff and the Office of Licensing immediately by phone, or at the residence in-person within one hour.

(b) shall have a residence director, manager or substitute on-site a minimum of 7 days per week in order to assess safety and support clients. These visits shall be scheduled and documented;

R501-18-7. Direct Service.

(1) This subsection supersedes Core Rules, Section R501-2-5. The recovery residence client records shall contain the following:

(a) name, address, telephone number, email;

(b) admission date;

(c) emergency contact information with names, address, email, and telephone numbers;

(d) all information that could affect the health, safety or well-being of the client to include:

(i) medications;

(ii) allergies;

(iii) chronic conditions; or

(iv) communicable diseases;

(e) intake documentation indicating that the client meets the admission criteria, including the following:

(i) not currently using or withdrawing from alcohol or substances of abuse; and

(ii) not presenting with a current clinical assessment that contraindicates this level of care.

(f) individual recovery plan, including the signature and title of the program representative preparing the recovery plan and the signature of the client; the recovery plan shall include the following:

(i) documentation of all services provided by the program, including a disclosure that no clinical treatment services occur on-site at the recovery residence; and

(ii) documentation of all referred supportive services, not directly associated with the recovery residence site.

(g) the signed written lease agreement for the recovery residence, if required;

(h) a signed agreement indication that the client was notified in writing prior to admission regarding:

(i) program and client responsibilities related to transportation to and location of off-site services;

(ii) program and client responsibilities related to the provision of toiletries, bedding and linens, laundry and other household items;

(iii) program and client responsibilities related to shopping, provision of food and preparation of meals;

(iv) fee disclosures included Medicaid number, insurance information and identification of any other entities who may be billed for the client's services;

(v) rules of the program;

(vi) client rights

(vii) grievance and complaint policy;

(viii) critical incident reports involving the client; and

(iv) discharge documentation.

R501-18-8. Building and Grounds.

(1) The recovery residence shall ensure that building and grounds are safe and well-maintained. Furnishings, finishings, fixtures, equipment, appliances and utilities are operational and in good condition.

(2) The recovery residence shall:

(a) have locking bathroom capability sufficient to preserve the privacy of the occupant;

(b) provide access to a toilet, sink, and a tub or shower; as follows per the International Building Code:

(i) maintain a client to toilet ratio of 1:10, and

(ii) maintain a client to tub/shower ratio of 1:8.

(c) provide a mirror secured to a wall at convenient height;

(d) ensure that each bathroom is ventilated by a screened window that opens, a working fan or heating/air conditioning duct that circulates air;

(e) provide a minimum of 60 square feet per client in a multiple occupant bedroom and 80 square feet in a single occupant bedroom. Storage space shall not be counted;

(f) ensure that sleeping areas shall have a source of natural light, and shall be ventilated by a screened window that opens, a working fan, or heating/air conditioning duct that circulates air;

(g) ensure that each client is provided with a solidly constructed bed, box spring and mattress that is maintained and provides for client comfort and is commensurate with all other client beds in the residence;

(h) ensure that male and female bedrooms are separated within the residence either by floors, walls or locking doors. If locking doors are used, a policy must identify the use of locks to delineate separation;

(i) ensure that clients shall be allowed to decorate and personalize bedrooms with respect for other clients and property;

(j) if a fire clearance is not required or provided from the local fire authority:

(i) a bedroom on the ground floor shall have a minimum of one window that may be used to evacuate the room in case of fire;

(ii) a bedroom that is not on the ground floor (this includes basements) shall have a minimum of two exits, at least one of which shall exit directly to outside the building that may be used to evacuate the room in case of fire;

(k) the recovery residences shall provide either equipment or reasonable access to equipment for washing and drying of linens and clothing;

(l) provide storage commensurate with the clients' assessed ability to safely access hazardous chemicals, materials and aerosols, including but not limited to:

(i) poisonous substances;

(ii) explosive or flammable substances;

(iii) bleach; and

(iv) cleaning supplies;

(m) maintain hazardous chemicals, materials, and aerosols in their original packaging and follow the manufacturer's instructions printed on the label.

(n) maintain a sober environment free from non-prescribed substances and alcohol.

R501-18-9. Food Service.

(1) Meals may be catered, prepared by staff or prepared by clients.

(2) The recovery residence shall have at least one kitchen.

(3) If the recovery residence allows staff or clients to prepare food for clients, it shall comply with food service requirements as follows:

(a) develop and follow a food service policy to address:

(i) how special dietary needs and food allergies will be tracked and accommodated;

(ii) how safe food preparation and cleanup will be ensured;

(b) document compliance with, or exemption from, requirements of the local health department to include:

(i) health inspections and clearances; and

(ii) food handler's permits for anyone preparing food for anyone other than self;

(c) food of sufficient nutrition and variety shall be provided;

(d) menus shall be available upon request; and

(e) this does not prohibit clients from preparing their own food and choosing to share with other clients.

(4) The recovery residence shall provide enough seating at tables or tray tables to accommodate all clients simultaneously.

R501-18-10. Medical Standards.

(1) The recovery residence shall not admit anyone who is currently in an intoxicated state or withdrawing from alcohol or drugs or otherwise unable to understand terms and consent to reside in the recovery residence.

(2) Before admission or employment, clients and staff shall be screened for Tuberculosis by a questionnaire approved by the local health department; if further screening is indicated, clients and staff will:

(a) follow appropriate protocol according to the local health department;

(b) provide proof of negative test results for Tuberculosis; and

(c) test annually or more frequently as required.

(3) A recovery residence that manages clients' medications shall keep all prescription and non-prescription medications in locked storage that is not accessible by clients when not in active use.

(4) A recovery residence shall ensure that clients who manage their own medications keep all prescription and non-prescription medications in individually accessed locked storage that is not accessible to other clients when not in active use.

(5) Non-prescription and prescription medications shall be stored in their original manufacturer's packaging together with manufacturer/pharmacy directions and warnings.

(6) Naloxone shall be safely maintained and available onsite, and staff and clients shall be trained in its proper use.


licensing, human services, recovery residence

Date of Enactment or Last Substantive Amendment

February 7, 2018

Notice of Continuation

December 9, 2019

Authorizing, Implemented, or Interpreted Law

62A-2-101; 62A-2-106

Additional Information


For questions regarding the content or application of rules under Title R501, please contact the promulgating agency (Human Services, Administration, Administrative Services, Licensing). A list of agencies with links to their homepages is available at http://www.utah.gov/government/agencylist.html or from http://www.rules.utah.gov/contact/agencycontacts.htm.