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September 9, 2013

CONTACT: Melanie Mowry Etters
Communication Director

Court Rules in Favor of iBudget

TALLAHASSEE —This afternoon, the Agency for Persons with Disabilities (APD) learned that an Administrative Law Judge has ruled in support of the agency and its iBudget Florida program.  The Division of Administrative Hearings supported the agency’s position on all counts.

The final order stated, “APD’s method of dealing with this complex issue is reasonable. Proposed rules are not arbitrary or capricious as promulgated.” The order also said, “Proposed Rules 65G-4.0210 through 65G-4.027 are not invalid exercises of delegated legislative authority.”

APD Director Barbara Palmer said, “We are so happy that the court supported all aspects of the iBudget program, and validated how it was implemented across the state. We hope the petitioners will accept the judge’s decision, and allow the agency to continue moving forward with the iBudget program that provides customers with flexibility to meet their needs.”

About 30,000 APD customers use the iBudget Florida Medicaid waiver to direct and receive Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS). The HCBS waiver is funded by state and federal tax dollars to help people with developmental disabilities live and participate in their local communities.

iBudget Florida is a new way to deliver Medicaid waiver services. It has been approved by both the Florida Legislature and the federal government. The iBudget waiver provides greater ability to choose services that matter most to customers given their unique situations. It gives flexibility for customers to respond to their changing needs.

Families in Florida using iBudget which has given them increased flexibility and improved self-direction.  APD has posted interviews with families on  Visit to view the testimonials.

iBudget Florida is designed to make the funding process fair and equitable for all Medicaid waiver customers. It has increased opportunities for customers to direct their own care. This system also provides for financial predictability.
Some other customer benefits of iBudget Florida are:

  • Ability to reallocate funds not spent on services in one month for future service needs within a fiscal year
  • Access to dental services that were not available in the tier four waiver
  • Greater control to change services or providers to fit the person’s needs
  • Support coordinators able to use iBudget technology to reduce paperwork requirements and communicate efficiently with providers and APD, and
  • Greater opportunity for APD to use new funds to serve people on the Medicaid waiver waiting list.

APD annually serves more than 50,000 Floridians with the developmental disabilities of autism, cerebral palsy, Down syndrome, intellectual disabilities, spina bifida, and Prader-Willi syndrome. For more information on iBudget Florida, visit To learn more about the agency, call 1-866-APD-CARES
(1-866-273-2273) or visit