Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

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What is North Los Angeles County Regional Center?
NLACRC is a private, nonprofit corporation and one of 21 regional centers in California that is funded by the California Department of Developmental Services (DDS). NLACRC has supported persons with developmental disabilities in the San Fernando, Santa Clarita and Antelope Valleys for more than 45 years. Currently, we serve over 28,000 individuals and their families. Each regional center is governed by a Board of Trustees including persons with developmental disabilities, their family members, service providers, and other interested individuals.

What can the regional center do for me?
Regional center helps plan, obtain, coordinate and monitor services and supports that are needed because of a developmental disability.

What type of services does NLACRC offer?
Regional centers provide or coordinate the following services and supports, as they relate to a person’s developmental disability:

  • Information and referral
  • Assessment and diagnosis
  • Individualized planning and service coordination
  • Purchase of services included in the Individual Program Plan
  • Assistance in finding and using community and other resources
  • Advocacy
  • Early intervention services for at-risk infants and their families
  • Family support
  • Planning, placement, and monitoring of 24-hour out-of-home care
  • Training and educational opportunities for individuals and families
  • Community education about developmental disabilities

What do regional center services cost?
There is no charge for diagnosis and assessment for eligibility. Once eligibility is determined, most services are free regardless of age or income. There is a requirement for parents to share the cost of 24-hour, out-of-home placements for children under age 18, which depends on the parents’ ability to pay.

The Family Cost Participation Program (FCPP) went into effect on January 1, 2005, and requires that some families share in the cost of respite, day care and camping services. The Annual Family Program Fee (AFPF) is a program that went into effect as of July 1, 2011 as part of Trailer Bill AB 104. The AFPF assesses families with children between the ages of 0 through 17 who receive certain services through regional center to determine if they are required to pay an Annual Family Program Fee of up to $200 per family.

Regional centers are required by law to provide services in the most cost-effective way possible. They must use all other resources, including generic resources, before using any regional center funds. A generic resource is a service provided by an agency that has a legal responsibility to provide services to the general public and receives public funds for providing those services.

Some generic agencies you might be referred to are the local school district, county social services department, Medi-Cal, Social Security administration, Department of Rehabilitation and others. Other resources may include natural supports. This is help that you may get from family, friends or others.

How do I know what types of services I will get?
Regional centers use a planning process to develop an Individual Program Plan (IPP). For children ages 0 to 36 months, this process results in an Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP). The plan is developed by you, parents of a minor child, a guardian or conservator (if any), anyone else you invite to be with you, and the regional center staff.

The IPP (or IFSP) lists your goals and the services needed to reach those goals. It describes who will provide the service and who will pay for it. All services listed in the IPP or IFSP will be provided either by a generic or natural resource, a regional center service provider (a business approved by the regional center) or directly by the regional center.

How can I apply to receive regional center services?
To apply to see if you qualify to receive regional center services, please read the information on our Eligibility page, and complete an intake eligibility application.

What are state developmental centers?
The Department of Developmental Services currently operates four State developmental centers (DCs) which are licensed and certified as Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF), Intermediate Care Facility/Mentally Retarded (ICF/MR), and General Acute Care hospitals (GAC). The primary mission of the DC/CF facilities is to provide 24-hour habilitation and treatment services for residents with developmental disabilities designed to increase levels of independence, functioning skills, and opportunities for making choices that affect a person's life including the identification of services and supports and options for transition into the local community.

What is the Lanterman Act?
The Lanterman Developmental Disabilities Services Act of 1969 is a California law that was passed in 1969. It says that people with developmental disabilities and their families have a right to get the services and supports that they need to live like people who do not have disabilities.

The Lanterman Act also tells you what your rights are, how regional centers and service providers can help you, the types of services and supports that are available, how to use the Individualized Program Plan (IPP) to obtain the services that you need, what to do when you are told that you can't get the services that you need, and how to make the system better. View
the Lanterman Act

California Department of Developmental Services web site
You can learn more about many of these topics by visiting the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) web site at


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