Dialog Box

FAQ about NDIS

What is NDIS?

The National Disability Scheme (NDIS) is a new way of providing support for people living with disability. It's a whole-of-life approach - a major reform of disability services in Australia, designed to provide the right support according to each person's needs and goals. The NDIS will provide all Australians under the age of 65 with a permanent and significant disability with the reasonable and necessary supports they need to live an ordinary life. Supports may include personal care and support, access to the community, therapy services, employment services and essential equipment.

The NDIS Pathways are: 

THINK about what you need

TALK to us and prepare for the NDIS

MEET your NDIS Planner and develop your plan

TURN your plan into action

LIVE your life the way you want 

What happens with the funding I already have?
Do I lose my pension or wages if I get the NDIS?

No - THE NDIS funding is your disability support and has nothing to do with your wages or pension.  Most people will also be able to keep the funding that they already receive from the Victorian government until NDIS is available in their area. 

Is the NDIS means tested?

Assistance from the NDIS is NOT means tested and has no impact on income support, such as the Disability Support Pension and Carers Allowance.

What are NDIS plans?
Do I need a plan?

A plan is like a guide of what you want to happen in your life.  A plan also talks about how you will make things happen.  A plan will say the support you need to do the things you want.  If you want to receive funding through the NDIS, you MUST have a plan. 

How do I get a NDIS plan?

You must meet with a person called a Planner from the National Disability Agency (NDIA) to work out a plan.  The NDIA is the agency that manages the NDIS.  You can take whoever you want with you to talk about your plan. 

What should be in the plan?

Part 1

Part 1 is about what you want to achieve.  The Planner will call this your goals and aspirations.  The Planner will ask you about the people you know and how they will help you.  They will talk about where you live and who you live with.  They will also talk about things like whether you work or not, asking what you do during the day and who you know in your area.

Part 2

 Part 2 is all about these things:  Help that you get from your family and friends, some people call this informal supports;  The supports that will be funded by NDIS;  How the funding for your supports will be managed;  A date for the plan to be looked at again. 

Can I change my plan?

Yes.  Most plans are for 6 or 12 months and then they should be considered again.  This is called a review.  Review dates need to be written in the plan.  But things do change and if your circumstances change you can contact your Planner and organise a meeting to change the plan.

What can you get ready now?

1. Think about how much control you want?

2. Learn about different ways that funding can be managed

3. Prepare a book that can be shown to people that are supporting you 

Does my plan have anything to do with funding?

Your plan from the NDIA should say what you want to do, what you want to be called, your goals and aspirations.  Your plan should also say what support you need to do the things you want to do.  The NDIA will use that information to decide how much funding you need.  Each plan needs to have a budget that goes with it.  It is a bit like planning a weekly budget.

You need to agree to both the plan that you make and the budget that the NDIA gives your plan.  Work this out before you agree to the plan and the budget.  If you cannot work it out, you can ask for help.  Make sure that you sign the last version of your plan. 

What can I ask for from the NDIA?
What can I ask for?

You can ask for things to support you to do what you want to do. The NDIS will not have programs. You need to start thinking about what you want to do. Also think about what support you need to do what you want.

You can ask for things like

  • Transport to take you places 
  • Help with things you do at home like cooking/cleaning 
  • Help at work; Therapy type supports 
  • Changes you need to your home 
  • Equipment so you can go to the places you need to 
  • Changes to a car so that you can use it
How will I know if what I am asking for is okay? 

If you are not sure whether something is okay, you should ask. If you are told that you cannot have what you ask for, that is alright - at least you know. Supports must relate to your disability, be value for money and useful and helpful to you. 

Will I get everything I ask for?

You may not get everything that you ask for - but if you do not ask for what you want then you will not know what you could get. If you are told that you cannot get what you would like, you can ask why. If you are unhappy about the answer, it is possible to question the answer by appealing.  Appealing means that your question and the answer you got will be looked at by someone else.

How does the assessment work?

The Planner will work out your support needs by asking about your life. There are 10 parts of your life that they will ask about. They will be trying to work out what supports you need to do things.

Here is an example of these things:

  • Understanding and remembering information
  • Learning new things, practising and using new skills and ideas
  • Doing daily tasks, managing things you do each day, knowing what to do when things go wrong, making choices
  • Being understood and understanding people
  • Movement - getting in and out of bed, moving around your home and community
  • Things like having a shower and eating
  • Cooking & Cleaning
  • Making and keeping friends and  dealing with feelings and emotions
  • Doing things you enjoy with other people and what you do in your free time
  • Learning things
  • Your work 

What happens when I have worked out support?

Once you have worked out who will support you to do the things in your plan, you can get started! You can start making steps to reach your goals. You are in control. 

Talk to people you know about what you are doing. You can start getting things that your plan says you can (like equipment). You can start getting the support you need to do the things you want. You can change the support you use to suit you. For example you may need more support during weekends than during the week. 

Remember that the Planner will have said the total amount of money you have to spend on flexible supports. It is good to look at how much things cost so you do not spend more than you have. Keep looking at the plan as a reminder.

If you are not sure about anything you can: 

  • Talk to a family member
  • Talk to NDIA staff
  • Talk to a member of the BrainLink team
  • Go to training to get more skills to manage your funding