You will be contacted by the NDIS or a Local Area Coordinator (LAC) to arrange your initial planning meeting. This meeting can take place where you are most comfortable, at your home, at the NDIS office etc. You also have a right as to the medium of this meeting, it can be face to face or over the phone. It is important you feel comfortable during this process, whichever options you chose. You are able to take a support person into the planning meeting with you. This can be another family member, an advocate or someone from a service that you trust.
This planning meeting is about identifying what you want to achieve, what is important to you and what you might need to help you. Be honest and open with your planner and give them as much information as possible so that they understand your life. You will talk about what your life looks like now, what you would like it to look like, things you like, supports you have already and what works and doesn’t work.
The planner will then put together your plan and contact you when it is completed. The plan can look confusing – don’t panic. If you are confused and don’t understand, tell the planner, ask the planner to explain it again, you can always ask to come back with someone who might be able to assist you – a support person. Remember that this plan is about you, this whole scheme is about placing you with all the choice and control.
There are three options for the financial management of the plan. They are:
- NDIA managed – all the organisations or providers that you engage with will have to be registered with the NDIA, and they will send the invoice of the supports directly to the NDIA through the portal.
- Self-managed – the participant (or nominee) will be responsible for paying the organisations for supports. The invoices will be sent to you, and then you will have to claim the funds back from the NDIA through the portal to them pay your providers. Under self-management you are not restricted to only using NDIA registered providers.
- Plan Managed – a third party is involved and they are responsible for paying the invoices. You will have to notify your providers of your plan manager and invoices will be sent directly to them. The plan manager will pay the invoices and claim back from the NDIA portal. Under plan managed you do not have to use registered providers.
All of these options have benefits and flaws, talk to other people about what they prefer, or to your providers about what options might suit you.
At no point will you sign off on a NDIS plan, the NDIA have the authority to implement a plan when they have completed it. If there is a part or parts of your plan that you are not satisfied with you can request an internal review. This means that another planner will be involved in the planning process. There is an application form for the review that you can complete here, however you can also request this review verbally. Please remember that is important for the NDIA to have as much information about what decision you aren’t satisfied with.
After the internal review has occurred and you are still not satisfied with the decision you can apply for a review by the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT). You must have had an internal review before you can apply for the AAT. For further information on the application process or to apply please click here or call 1800 228 333.
The NDIA encourage feedback on the planning process and have a complaints process. Please see their website for further information.
After all of that, if you are satisified with your plan it is time to implement.
Please note – you can implement your plan whilst undergoing an internal review.