What is self-direction with two illustrated people and a compass

Self-Directed Services are grounded in the principles of self-determination and give waiver participants and families greater control over the services they receive, how they receive them, and who provides them.

People receiving funding through The Developmental Disabilities Administration (DDA) may choose either a traditional provider delivery model or a self-directed services model. At The Arc, we support both options. Each person decides which approach best fits their life.

Under the Self-Directed Services model of funding, the choice and responsibility of who to recruit, hire, train, and supervise to provide their services is both the choice and the responsibility of the person with a disability or their chosen representative. Choosing Self-Directed Services requires Financial Management Services (FMS) through a DDA-approved provider.

Financial Management Services is a required administrative service funded by the DDA when self-direction is chosen by the participant or their representative. Any participant choosing to self-direct will require the support and services of an FMS provider like The Arc who can assist them in exercising their employer and budget authority. As the FMS provider, The Arc manages the payroll and payroll reporting services, payments to vendors for goods and services, tracking and verifying approved budget items, and providing tax-related information to state and federal authorities on behalf of the participant. Self-Directed Services is a service delivery option for people who wish to exercise more choice, control, and authority over their service needs.