Apply for Services
- The Division of Developmental Disabilities (DDD) is working to make it easier for individuals and families to apply for adult services. We are writing with some updates on this work.
We have updated our eligibility and application materials to simplify and more clearly explain our eligibility criteria, our application requirements, and the next steps you need to take after applying. Everything you need to apply for services is now in one application.
We have combined the:
- Current Application and
- Functional Information Form
We have also:
- Included and expanded the application instructions
- Added a checklist of needed documents
- Changed the formatting to make the application easier to read and follow
- Included needed signatures/releases
- Posted the updated application below
If you have any recommendations on how to improve the updated application materials, please submit your ideas to BHDDH.AskDD@bhddh.ri.gov.
- BHDDH is launching an “Eligibility Determination by 17” Policy that establishes a referral process at age 16 with eligibility determination by age 17. Our goal is that individuals with disabilities enrolled in Rhode Island schools will be identified as eligible for adult services before their exit from school or transition programs. School districts will be guided to inform families that they have a right to file an application for BHDDH adult services at the age of 16 for youth who are categorized under IDEA as having an intellectual disability, autism, or multiple disabilities, or are believed to have a developmental disability and be eligible for BHDDH services. It is solely the family’s decision whether to submit an application for services at this age.
The policy of determining students eligible by 17 is to make sure students are receiving the right transition services at the right time. By determining eligibility at 17 it provides the schools, Office Rehabilitative Services (ORS) and Division of Developmental Disabilities (DDD) information on who will be eligible to receive certain services. School districts work with ORS to provide students with job skills, development and training, and then ORS and DDD will work to together to further enhance job skills and assist in finding employment or help with job retention. As an Employment First state we emphasize building employment skills for the youth who will be entering the adult Developmental Disabilities system.
- Who should submit an eligibility application?
- Students who are age 16 or older should submit an eligibility application if they meet the criteria outlined in the eligibility packet.
- When should individuals/families apply?
- Families are encouraged to apply 60 days before their son or daughter turns 17 years old, although individuals may apply at any time after age 16.
- Is submitting an application before the age of 17 mandatory?
- No. This is entirely up to the family and individual. This policy is meant to create a smoother transition experience from schools to adult services for those found eligible.
- What happens after a completed application is submitted?
- Once a complete application is submitted with all needed documentation, staff at the Division will send an acknowledgement letter that the application has been received. (Only completed applications can be processed). The application will then be processed and a determination will be made in 30 days.
- What happens after determination?
- After an eligibility determination has been made a letter will go out to the family and in some cases the school, if a teacher assisted in filling out the application. The State Transition Coordinator will then be assigned the case to monitor until the student school exit year. At this time a social caseworker will be assigned and meet with the student, the family and the school prior to their transition from the school system to the adult system.
- Updated Application is here
- The applicant must submit records that document their developmental
disability. This documentation should when possible include:
- Cognitive testing (available through the schools w/in 7 yrs of last attendance
or private testing through medical coverage)
- Official diagnosis by medical doctor, psychologist, or licensed clinician – all
available diagnosis should be submitted
- Vocational records through school and ORS
- Medical records documenting any medical disability and limitations
- Any other agency records that document the applicant's abilities and
- *Often multiple eval and diagnosis are available. Please submit all available
- A copy of the applicant's birth certificate or I-94 form
- A copy of the applicant's social security card
- If applicable, a copy of the Probate court's order of appointment of the
- If you have any questions while completing these forms, please call the Division of
Developmental Disabilities (DDD) at 401-462-3421 and ask to speak with an eligibility caseworker.
- Completed applications and all other information should be
Simpson Hall – Eligibility Unit
6 Harrington Rd,
Cranston, RI 02920
- Verification of Receipt of Application
BHDDH will send verification when the application and functional information
report are received. If the applicant indicates on the application that all records
have been sent, the file will then be scheduled for review by the Eligibility
Committee. If the applicant indicates that they need additional time to obtain
records, the file will be placed in a pending status until all records have been
received, and will then be reviewed by the Eligibility Committee. If you need
assistance with this process, please call 462-3421 and ask to speak to a covering
- Eligibility Determination
Once DDD receives a completed application, with evaluations, medical
information, school records and other relevant information a personal interview
with the applicant may be requested. Eligibility cannot be determined until all of
the necessary information and records have been received by DDD and a
personal interview, if necessary, has been conducted.
All of the information will be presented to the DDD Eligibility Committee.
Using the statutory and regulation criteria, the Eligibility Committee will decide
whether the person is eligible for DDD services.
If the Eligibility Committee finds that an applicant is eligible for DDD services, a
notice of the determination will be sent to the applicant, the applicant's legal
guardian or relative and when appropriate, the agency, advocate or professional
who referred the applicant.
If an applicant is ineligible for DDD services, a notice of the determination will be
sent to the applicant, the applicant's legal guardian or relative, and when
appropriate, the agency, advocate or professional who referred the applicant.
The notice shall include the reasons for the Eligibility Committee's decision and
an explanation of the applicant's appeal rights.