LEGAL CONCLUSIONS 1. In the Lanterman Developmental Disabilities

1. In the Lanterman Developmental Disabilities Services Act, the State of
California accepts responsibilities for persons with developmental disabilities. (Welf. &
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Inst. Code, § 4500 et seq.2
) The Lanterman Act and the regulations adopted to
implement the act govern this matter. A state level fair hearing is available to service
agency consumers to determine the rights and obligations of the parties. Claimant
properly and timely requested a fair hearing and therefore jurisdiction was established.
2 All subsequent statutory references are to the Welfare and Institutions Code.
2. Where a claimant seeks to establish the propriety of a new service, the
burden is on the claimant to demonstrate by a preponderance of the evidence that the
service agency’s denial of that service was incorrect. (See, e.g., Hughes v. Board of
Architectural Examiners (1998) 17 Cal.4th 763, 789, fn. 9.) Here, claimant has the burden
to establish by a preponderance of the evidence that NBRC has improperly denied the
request to change supported living service providers to an appropriate agency that can
meet his needs and choices, IPP, safety and health.
3. The Lanterman Act mandates that “an array of services and supports
should be established . . . to meet the needs and choices of each person with
developmental disabilities .

 . . and to support their integration into the mainstream life
of the community.” (§ 4501.) The purpose of the scheme is twofold: (1) to prevent or
minimize the institutionalization of persons with developmental disabilities and their
dislocation from family and community and (2) to enable persons with developmental
disabilities to approximate the pattern of everyday living of nondisabled persons of the
same age and to lead more independent and productive lives. (§§ 4501 & 4685;
Association for Retarded Citizens v. Department of Developmental Services (1985) 38
Cal.3d 384, 388.)
4. The Department of Developmental Services is the state agency charged
with implementing the Lanterman Act. It contracts with regional centers that are
charged with the responsibility of providing developmentally disabled individuals with
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access to services and supports best suited for them. (§ 4620, subd. (a).) To determine
how a consumer is to be served, regional centers conduct a planning process that
results in the development of an IPP. (§ 4646.) The IPP is developed by an
interdisciplinary team with the participation by the consumer and/or his or her
representative. Among other things, the IPP must set forth goals and objectives for the
consumer, contain provision for the acquisition of services, and reflect the consumer’s
desires and preferences. (§§ 4646 & 4646.5.)

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