CERTIFICATION MAINTENANCE FEE FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions About Certification Maintenance Fees

  • What are Certification Maintenance Fees?
  • When are Certification Maintenance Fees due?
  • What am I paying for? Where does my money go?
  • How will I be notified when my payment is due?
  • What if my payment is late?
  • What happens if I don’t pay Certification Maintenance Fees?
  • I just paid my dues. Why do I have to pay again?
  • Does my ACLP membership dues cover my certification too?
  • Can I join ACLP now and receive the discounted rate for my Certification Maintenance Fee?
  • What if I want or need to pay by check?
  • My hospital will pay my Certification Maintenance Fee. How do I get an invoice?
  • How do I get a receipt for my payment?

The Certification Maintenance and Recertification Manual  is a detailed, printer-friendly document that provides a comprehensive overview of the maintenance and recertification processes.

What are Certification Maintenance Fees?

Certified Child Life Specialists® pay Certification Maintenance Fees to support the administration of the certification program, and to maintain their individual certification.

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When are Certification Maintenance Fees due?

Certification Maintenance fees are due by January 31 in each of the first four years of the five-year certification cycle. The first payment is due January 31 of the year immediately following the day the Certified Child Life Specialists®  passed the certification exam. For example, if you passed the exam in March, August or November 2016, your first maintenance payment is due on or before January 31, 2017. You will also pay the fee by January 31 of 2018, 2019, and 2020. In 2021, you will not pay a maintenance fee because you will need to recertify in the year in which your certification expires.  If you recertified during 2016, your first annual maintenance fee payment for your new cycle is due by January 31, 2017.

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What am I paying for? Where does my money go?

Certification Maintenance Fees fund activities that promote the growth of the certification program such as practice analysis studies, surveys which lead to policy development, and efforts to market the value of certification in order to provide Certified Child Life Specialists® with a competitive edge.

 

In addition, maintenance fees subsidize the general administration of the certification program, including the continual assessment of the ACLP Certifying Committee’s policies in relation to best practices for credentialing, the implementation of leadership decisions, maintenance of accurate certification records, and the communication of a clear message of quality for the profession.

 

In contrast, the Examination Fee covers the costs incurred by the association to administer the exam, such as exam development and testing agency fees. 

 

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How will I be notified when my payment is due?

Ultimately, it is the responsibility of all Certified Child Life Specialists® to pay their maintenance fees every January for the first four years of their certification cycle. However, we will send email reminders regarding certification maintenance in December and January; this means it is very important that you keep your ACLP User Profile up-to-date with an active email address that you check regularly.

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What if my payment is late?

A $25 late fee is applied to payments that are received after January 31. Late payments will be accepted through March 31, after which certification will become inactive due to non-payment.  Individuals who have an inactive certification status are not permitted to refer to themselves as a Certified Child Life Specialist® or use the initials “CCLS” after their name. These individuals must apply for reinstatement of the credential by December 31 of the year in which the delinquent payment was due (additional $50 reinstatement fee applies).  If certification is not reinstated by the end of that calendar year, certification lapses.

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What happens if I don’t pay Certification Maintenance Fees?

Certification will lapse if Certification Maintenance Fees are not paid in a timely fashion. If certification lapses due to non-payment of maintenance fees, an individual will no longer be permitted to refer to him/herself as a Certified Child Life Specialist® or use the initials “CCLS” after his or her name. To regain the credential, individuals with lapsed certification must re-establish eligibility for, take and pass the certification examination.

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I just paid my dues; why do I have to pay again?

Certification Maintenance Fees are due once a year in January for the first four years of your certification cycle. If you recently made a payment to the Association of Child Life Professionals, it was probably for membership dues. Maintenance fees are separate from ACLP membership dues. ACLP membership dues are paid annually for membership in the Association. ACLP members receive many benefits, including reduced rates on most Child Life Professional Certification fees; however, membership is not required for certification.

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Does my ACLP membership dues cover my certification, too?

Child Life Professional Certification and ACLP membership are completely separate programs, each with distinct fees and associated benefits. Certified Child Life Specialists® are not required to be members of ACLP, just as certification is not a requirement for ACLP membership. However, ACLP members receive discounted rates on most certification fees.

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Can I join ACLP now and receive the discounted rate for my Certification Maintenance Fee?

If you join the ACLP in January, you will receive the discount on your certification maintenance or recertification fee for the following year. Invoices for maintenance fees are created based on membership status as of the invoice date in mid-December, and it is ACLP policy to make no adjustments based on new or renewed memberships after that date. If you are not a current ACLP member when your certification maintenance invoice is created, you will not receive the discounted rate until the following year’s invoice is created. Visit Membership for more information on ACLP membership and benefits.

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What if I want or need to pay by check?

If you prefer to pay by check:

  1. Please be sure to include your name and ID number on your check made payable to the Association of Child Life Professionals.
  2. Enclose a copy of the invoice that is emailed to you, signing it to indicate your continued agreement to the Statements of Understanding.
  3. Mail your check and invoice to the ACLP office at:

 

Certification Maintenance

Association of Child Life Professionals

1820 N Fort Myer Drive, Suite 520

Arlington, VA 22209

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My hospital will pay my Certification Maintenance Fee. How do I get an invoice?

An invoice is sent via email to all Certified Child Life Specialists® who have a maintenance fee balance due. If you need assistance, please contact certification@childlife.org.

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How do I get a receipt for my payment?

When you complete your transaction online, you will get a receipt immediately after submitting the payment. Please be sure to print the receipt and save it for your records.

 

If you are paying by check and require a receipt, please include your request with your payment. Please note, it may take up to three weeks to process receipts for check payments. The same three-week turnaround is required if a duplicate receipt is requested for an online payment.