Individual and Family Supports Waiver (IFS) for Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities

The Department of Developmental Services (DDS) Home and Community-based (HCBS) Waivers assist individuals with intellectual disabilities and are designed to maximize a person’s potential, increase their independence and promote meaningful community connections. These waivers provide in-home, employment/vocational, and family support services for people who live in their own home, a family home or licensed settings.

With the Individual and Family Supports Waiver (IFS) individuals can receive a number of specialized services and supports and the authority to self-direct care as they desire. The goal of the IFS Waiver is to connect people in need with a support network, maximize their independence and promote community engagement.

Note: There may be a waiting list for this program.

See Also: There are two other DDS Medicaid Home and Community-Based Waivers to assist individuals with intellectual disabilities. The services provided for each are similar, but there are some differences.

  1. DDS Comprehensive Supports Waiver: This provides comprehensive services and supports to people with intellectual disabilities in need of a high level of care.
  2. DDS Employment and Day Supports Waiver: This provides services and supports specifically to assist individuals to find and apply for jobs and maintain employment.

Eligibility Criteria

To be eligible, applicants must meet the following requirements:

  • Must be deemed eligible for DDS services first, before receiving any waiver services. Find the DDS eligibility requirements here.
  • Must need an ICF/IID level of care. That is, the person must have an intellectual or developmental disability and a level of need which would necessitate the level of services provided in an institution.
  • Is willing to or has a desire to live in a community setting.
  • Income and assets must be within the limits specified for the waiver.

A person’s assets must be less than $1,600 and income and entitlements less than three times their Supplemental Security Income payment. Working individuals may be eligible for the Working Disabled (SO5) Medicaid program which has higher income and asset limits. Only the assets of the applicant are considered, not family members.

Spend Down

Individuals who cannot afford the cost of care, but are over Medicaid’s limits may still qualify. The state has a spend down program that evaluates an individual’s care costs and their income. If it is calculated that an individual cannot meet their care costs, they can qualify for Medicaid by spending-down their income over the limit on their medically-necessary care costs.

Alternatively, individuals can also privately pay for services out-of-pocket until becoming eligible.


Individuals who are denied enrollment into one of the DDS waivers or who are denied requested waiver services have the right to request a hearing from the Department of Social Services. Notice of Fair Hearing Rights and the Hearing Request Form are provided to the individual with the written denial of enrollment or service.

Types of services and supports that can be used for DDS Individual and Family Supports Waiver

Services offered through the IFS Waiver include:

  • Licensed Residential Services: Community Companion Homes (CCH).
  • Residential and Family Support Services: Continuous Residential Services (CRS), Shared Living, Individual Home Supports (IHS), Live-in Companion, Personal Support, Adult Companion, Respite Care, Personal Emergency and Response Systems (PERS) and Environmental and Vehicle Modifications.
  • Vocational and Day Services: Adult Day Health, Individual and Group Supported Employment, Group Day Supports, Prevocational Services, Individualized Day and Senior Supports.
  • Specialized Support Services: Health Care Coordination, Behavior Support Services, Nutritional Consultation, Specialized Equipment and Supplies, Interpreter, Transportation, Individually Directed Goods and Services, Independent Support Broker, Parenting Support, Assistive Technology, Peer Support and Training and Counseling for Unpaid Caregivers.


People who have enrolled in the DDS IFS Waiver may not receive care immediately and may be placed on the DDS Waiting List until an open slot becomes available. DDS will notify people on the Waiting List when there is an available opening through the regional Planning and Resource Allocation Team (PRAT) process.

Applicants deemed eligible to receive services and their team will start the individual plan process and complete the waiver application and the Medicaid application if necessary. Case managers for people already receiving services can help them determine if they are waiver eligible and help complete the application process. Care recipients will be able to independently choose services and supports or work with a support broker for assistance.

To get an application form or for additional information, contact:

North Region 1-877-437-4577
South Region 1-877-437-4567
West Region 1-877-491-2720