Eligibility Fact Sheet
In order to be eligible for supports or services from the Department of Developmental Services (DDS), a person must:
- Be a resident of the State of Connecticut and
- Have an intellectual disability as defined in Connecticut General Statutes Section 1-1g (see below)
Have a medical diagnosis of Prader-Willi Syndrome (PWS), which is a neurobehavioral genetic disorder that must be diagnosed by a physician.
People who have a diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder, but do not have intellectual disability may be eligible for services from the Autism Spectrum Disorder Program. Please click this link for more information. https://portal.ct.gov/DSS/Health-And-Home-Care/Autism-Spectrum-Disorder---ASD/Autism-Spectrum-Disorder---ASD
Per Connecticut General Statutes Section 1-1g, intellectual disability is defined as a significant limitation in intellectual functioning and deficits in adaptive behavior that originated during the developmental period before 18 years of age. Intellectual disability was formerly referred to as mental retardation in Connecticut Statutes and many psychological and other clinical evaluations.
What does this mean?
A person has a valid Full Scale IQ score of 69 or below as indicated on intelligence/cognitive tests and significant limitations in adaptive functioning, that began during the developmental period before the age of 18.
What tests do I need?To show that an individual has an intellectual disability, you will need to submit a copy of all intelligence/cognitive tests and tests of adaptive functioning completed prior to the age of 18. Full Scale IQ scores on intelligence/cognitive tests need to be 69 points or lower. Significant limitations in intelligence and adaptive skills must be present at the same time and have existed before the individual was 18 years of age.
Where can I get tested and who can test me?
You can get tested for an intellectual disability at a clinic, hospital, or school (if you are under age 21). The evaluator should have a specialty in the age range of the individual and have training, experience, and a competency in diagnosing intellectual disability. This might include a psychiatrist, psychologist, neurologist, developmental pediatrician, certified school psychologist or any other appropriately trained professional with expertise in this area.
What if I am missing documents or have other special circumstances?
If you are unable to obtain educational documents or have other special circumstances, the following link will provide you guidance. Guide for Missing Eligibility Documents
What if I am found ineligible?
If a decision of ineligibility is made, the reasons for this decision will be explained in the notification letter. Also included will be a form for you to submit to request a hearing on the finding of ineligibility. You may submit this form within 60 days of receiving the eligibility determination. Please click on the following link to access the appeal hearing form. Request for Hearing - Eligibility for Services Form.
What happens if I am determined eligible?
Once eligibility is determined, a DDS Region will be assigned to help you access services and supports. However, eligibility for services does not assure that requests for services can be met immediately. Services of the Department of Developmental Services are provided on a priority basis and within available appropriations. The following link will provide you with the region assigned to your town. Town Finder