What is the NDIS? 

The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is a federal government scheme that represents a new way of delivering assistance to Australians in need of disability support. 

Unlike anything else before it, the NDIS when it is fully rolled out will provide funding to approximately 460,000 Australians aged under 65 with permanent and significant disability for services and supports. 

Given the wide scope of the NDIS, for many of the around 4.3 million Australians living with a disability and in need of disability support the NDIS will represent the first time they receive the support they need. The NDIS is implemented by the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA).

How can you benefit under the NDIS? 

As a new model being rolled out nationally to provide funding and support to people with permanent and significant disabilities across Australia, the NDIS aims to supports people with a disability to live an ordinary life, with an approach that supports them throughout their life. 

The NDIS provides a range of supports. These include: 

• Support to increase involvement in local communities 

• Support to facilitate greater independence 

• Support to enhance wellbeing; and 

• Support in gaining employment and skills 

• Managing your NDIS funds and coordinating your services with a Support Coordinator

If you are assessed as being eligible for NDIS assistance, you will receive funding on an annual basis to acquire the aids, services, support and equipment that you are deemed to need as a result of an assessment by the NDIA. At this point, you can choose to self-manage your own funds, in which case you make claims to NDIS personally, you can select a Plan Manager to manage your funds for you or the NDIA is able to manage your funding for you.

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How do you find out if you are eligible for the NDIS? 

There are certain eligibility requirements you must meet in order to qualify for the NDIS. Specifically, you are deemed as eligible for the NDIS if you are: 

• Under 65 years old when you make your application 

• An Australian resident, permanent visa holder or Australian Citizen 

• And, meet the disability or early intervention requirements 

For those aged 65 years and over it is the case that in most situations you will be ineligible for the NDIS and will receive support through the federal government’s aged care system. 

Who will decide if you can access the NDIS? 

The NDIA determines individual eligibility for the NDIS as the NDIA is the national agency responsible for running the NDIS. The process for accessing the NDIS can be broken down into three steps: 

Step 1. Complete the NDIS Access Checklist 

Step 2. Get in touch with the NDIA for an access request form on 1800 800 110 

Step 3. Read Accessing the NDIS to understand what supporting evidence is needed 

How does an ‘access request’ work? 

An ‘access request’ is when you provide information about yourself and your situation to the NDIA so they can make a determination about your eligibility for the NDIS.When it comes to making an access request, you will be asked to provide the following: 

• your name, age, where you live in Australia and whether you have permission to live in Australia permanently, 

• evidence of your residence and your age, 

• details and evidence of your disability and how it impacts on your daily life, 

• current and/or relevant reports you already have from medical specialists or allied health professionals related to your disability, 

• and whether you give permission for the NDIA to talk to other relevant people about your disability, such as Centrelink, your GP or a person/organisation currently providing support to you. 


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