To be eligible for services, a person must have a disability that begins before the person's 18th birthday, be expected to continue indefinitely and present a substantial disability as defined in Section 4512 of the California Welfare and Institutions Code. Eligibility is established through diagnosis and assessment performed by regional centers.
The California Department of Developmental Services is the agency through which the State of California provides services and supports to individuals with developmental disabilities.
These disabilities include intellectual disability, cerebral palsy, epilepsy, autism and related conditions. Services are provided through state-operated developmental centers and community facilities, and contracts with 21 nonprofit regional centers. The regional centers serve as a local resource to help find and access the services and supports available to individuals with developmental disabilities and their families.