Partners in Lifelong Support Since 1966



View a short video about self-determination

(Additional translations of the Self-Determination Program’s informational video to include Mandarin, Vietnamese, and Spanish are now available and can be found at

View Lanterman flyer on Self-Determination Program in English (color version/grayscale version)

View Lanterman flyer on Self-Determination Program in Spanish (color version/grayscale version)

In October of 2013, Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. signed into law the Self-Determination Program, which will provide regional center clients and their families with a new option. As authorized in Welfare and Institutions Code, Section 4685.8, "the Self-Determination Program (SDP) is a voluntary delivery system consisting of a mix of services and supports, selected and directed by a participant through person-centered planning, in order to meet the objectives in his or her Individual Program Plan (IPP). Self-determination services and supports are designed to assist the participant to achieve personally defined outcomes in community settings that promote inclusion," and allow participants to have more control in developing service plans and selecting service providers.

The Priniciples of Self Determination include:

  • Freedom to exercise the same rights as all citizens; to establish, with freely chosen supports, family and friends, where they want to live, with whom they want to live, how their time will be occupied, and who supports them;
  • Authority to control a budget in order to purchase services and supports of their choosing;
  • Support, including the ability to arrange resources and personnel, which will allow flexibility to live in the community of their choice;
  • Responsibility, which includes the opportunity to take responsibility for making decisions in their own lives and accept a valued role in their community, and
  • Confirmation, in making decisions in their own lives by designing and operating the service that they rely on.

When Will the Self-Determination Program Become Available?

The law requires that before this proram can be made available, the Department of Developmental Services submit an application for federal funding, and that this application be approved for funding by the federal government. Because the application process by DDS to the federal government is still in beginning stages, and because this process for review and approval may take some time, we do not yet have an estimated date when this program will be implemented.

The program will be implemented gradually. Upon approval of the Waiver application (federal funding), the SDP will be implemented for up to 2,500 participants in the state, to be phased in during the first three years. During the phase in period, the Department of Developmental Services will identify a limited number of clients/families from each regional center that may be enrolled in the Self Determination Program. In Lanterman's case, this will be 74 clients over the age of 3. After this three year phase-in period, the program will be available to all clients.

The process for selecting and enrolling the 2,500 participants in the first three years has not been finalized. However, you can e-mail to receive notice of Web site updates on the progress of the SDP, including the enrollment process. Please include your name and/or the name of the person interested in enrollment and the regional center you belong to within the e-mail. Additionally, if you would like to be placed on an interest list at Lanterman Regional Center, you may send an e-mail to providing the following information: 

  • your name and/or the name of the person who is interested in enrollment,
  • the person’s date of birth, and
  • the Unique Client Identifying (UCI) number (the UCI number is assigned to all regional center clients).

In addition, once we know more, the Regional Center will schedule meetings to inform our clients and families concerning the Regional Center’s plan of implementation.

Disability Rights California Handouts on the Self-Determination Program

Disability Rights California has compiled comprehensive handouts about self-determination.



The Self-Determination Program Community Advisory Committe provides input and oversight for the future implementation of the SDP. Agendas for the SDP CAC will include review of legislation; updates on the status of the Department of Developmental Services' federal Waiver application, and on the work of Statewide Advisory Group including materials (video, training and implementation guidelines) as they are made available.

Members of the Community Advisory Committee

  • Pierre Landry – Chairperson
  • Natalie Klasky – OCRA
  • Michele Wolf
  • Howard McBroom
  • Lareka Killebrew
  • Karla Diaz
  • Zulma Mena
  • Mariko Magami

2020 Committee Meeting Schedule
The committee meets on the first Thursday of the month at Lanterman. For more information about Lanterman's self-determination committee and the meetings, contact Frank Lara at 213.252.4902 or Meetings are open to the public.

  • October 1, 2020 - 6 p.m.
  • November – No meeting
  • December 3, 2020 - 6 p.m.

View the dates in our calendar

View agendas and meeting details for upcoming meetings and minutes from past meetings



The Department of Developmental Services also provides answers, and periodic updates on their Web site for Frequently Asked Questions. View the DDS FAQs

Financial Management Services
Participants in the Self-Determination Program (SDP) will get support from a person or business to help them pay for services they need. This person or business is called a Financial Management Services provider. Click here to see the list of FMS providers currently available.



  • You may refer to the Self Determination Program information page on the Department of Developmental Services Web site.
  • Sign up for e-mail updates by sending an email to and ask to be included on the update notification list.
  • If after reading the general information and Frequently Asked Questions on this page and the DDS webpage, you still have questions, contact your service coordinator.
  • Lanterman will begin to provide more information to our clients and families on our Web site and through our e-mail newsletter when it becomes available. Subscribe to our newsletter.
  • View more infomraiton about self-determination on the Autism Society of Los Angeles Web site.

DDS Self-Determination Newsletter Updates