Frequently asked questions

Updated 4 months ago

NDIS meetings

Can service providers support participants in planning and review meetings or is it necessary to involve advocates?

Service providers can definitely work with people to understand their review options, to prepare them for a review meeting (e.g., by gathering evidence for supports) and to help people make decisions about their supports. Support workers can also attend planning and review meetings with the person’s consent. However, the NDIS does not fund support workers to provide formal advocacy services, so it is important to understand the scope of your role compared to an advocate’s role. The provider role is to help the person build capacity to advocate for themselves, whereas formal advocacy services speak on behalf of a person when they are unable to do so. Examples of situations where it might be appropriate to involve a formal advocacy service include: when a person chooses to review an NDIA decision and proceed to an external review, or if the person wants a new support or significant increase in supports at their plan review meeting and is not able to ask for this themselves. You can find advocacy providers online using the DSS disability advocacy provider tool.

How do NDIS plan reviews work?

Scheduled plan reviews usually happen once every twelve months, but they can be more frequent or less often, depending on the person’s goals and needs. Plans reviews are an opportunity for participants to review their supports and make changes for the future. An NDIA representative should contact the participant or their nominee around 6 weeks before the plan end date to arrange a meeting.

You can also request a review at any time if there has been a change of circumstances or if the person’s support needs change significantly e.g., perhaps their carer becomes unwell, or they sustain an injury.

More information on plan reviews can be found on the NDIS website. You might also like to complete our ‘NDIS plan reviews’ training module.

How do you prepare for a planning meeting?

A person's NDIS plan determines the support they will receive for the next year or more, so it pays to be prepared. Local area coordinators (LACs) and existing informal and formal supports can help with preparing for planning meetings. We also recommend using a planning resource to help work through the process. Useful tools to help with planning include:

If the person has any assessments or reports that will help the NDIA understand their needs, it is a good idea to take those to the planning meeting.

For more information you can complete our ‘Preparing for NDIS planning meetings’ training module, or read our NDIS planning factsheet.

If a person needs to make a change to their plan is it better to wait for the scheduled review or lodge an unscheduled one?

It is important to remember that when a review occurs all aspects of the plan will be reviewed, not just the support that the participant wants to alter.

Sometimes it might be advisable to wait until the scheduled review to address concerns with a plan, particularly if you don't have long to wait until the next review. Other times, for example if a key support category is missing, it won't be in the person&apo;s best interests to wait. You need to weigh up these options with the person.

Should a person continue to use their plan while waiting for a decision after lodging a review?

Yes, it is fine to keep using the NDIS plan while waiting for the NDIA to make a decision. When determining how to use the funding during this time you will need to weigh up the person's immediate support needs, but also keep in mind that the request to review the plan may not be approved (so don't count on extra funding being available).

What are the next steps after a planning meeting?

At the end of the planning meeting, the LAC or NDIA planner will talk about the next steps, including how the plan will be reviewed and how to start using the funding in the plan.
After the meeting, the plan should be received by post, and the person will be contacted by an NDIA LAC or planner, who can help them get started with a plan (or put them in touch with a support coordinator to do this where funding is included in the plan).
Participants who are self-managing their NDIS plan will be contacted by the NDIS once the plan is approved and they will talk to the person or their nominee about the opportunities and responsibilities of self-managing.

For more information on who can help to start a plan, visit the NDIS website.

What happens if a participant disagrees with their approved plan?

A participant can request an internal review of their plan by the NDIA. This request must be made within 90 days of receiving the plan. If the participant is not happy with the result of the internal review, they may apply for a review by the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT), which is independent to the NDIA. More information on reviewing a planning decision is available on the NDIS website.

What is an unscheduled plan review?

Sometimes a plan needs to change in between regular reviews - the participant can request an unscheduled plan review to address this. Unscheduled plan reviews usually happen when a participant's circumstances have changed and their current plan no longer meets their needs, or they request a change to their plan management type. More information on reviewing and changing plans can be found the NDIS website.

Where do planning meetings take place and who can attend?

The participant can choose where and how their planning meeting is held, whether in person, over the phone, at an NDIA office or at another location that the participant chooses.

A representative of the NDIA (either an NDIA planner or a local area coordinator (LAC) partner) will be at the meeting.

Participants can also choose to bring other people with them to the meeting. Trusted others might include their support worker, carer, family, or friends.

Will the information provided at access be shared with the NDIA, LAC or planner?

In theory, yes; however, this may not always be the case in practice. It is always advisable to bring this information to planning, along with any additional information you have prepared.

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Last updated Jul 11 2024 11:59 PM CST