The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) focuses on providing choice and control to all NDIS participants. Typically, NDIS participants have the capacity to make decisions themselves. However, in rare cases, someone may be appointed as a nominee of a participant to help make decisions on their behalf. But what does this mean and what is the role of a nominee?
What is a nominee and what do they do?
A nominee is someone nominated by you to help you understand how to make better use of your NDIS plan and handle the NDIS (and other organisations like Centrelink) on your behalf.
There are two types of nominee offered within the NDIS – a plan nominee and a correspondence nominee.
A plan nominee can action any decisions a participant might make regarding their plan, including preparation for and decisions around plan reviews. Essentially, they are an extension of the participant. However, a plan nominee may be limited to the management of the plan and are not able to determine things like the goals of a participant. A participant can also limit their plan nominee to only act when they are not able to do so themselves (i.e., if they are in hospital, travelling etc.). A plan nominee must always put the best interests of the participant first while ensuring they maintain choice and control.
A correspondence nominee can only request, receive or provide information to a participant. For example, they can receive copies of NDIS and support related letters or documents and reply on your behalf or request more information if needed. This type of nominee is better suited for someone who wants to make their own decisions but may need assistance understanding letters or documents.
Having a nominee appointed is only considered by the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) in exceptional circumstances. For participants who need extra support but don’t require a nominee, Local Area Coordinators (LACs), Support Coordinators and Plan Managers (like us) are available to help.
What’s the difference between a nominee and a guardian?
It’s important to understand that a nominee and a guardian have different roles. A guardian has the authority to manage a participant’s affairs such as power of attorney. While a nominee is someone nominated by the participant to support them with the management of their NDIS plan.
Who can be your nominee and how long for?
A nominee can be (almost) anyone you wish. The only conditions the NDIA have around the appointment are that the person you nominate will need to be over the age of 18 years, and they cannot be part of the NDIA, or anyone associated with the NDIA. Outside of that, you should be confident that the person you would like as your nominee will always act in your best interests.
You can have an ongoing nominee, someone who continues as your nominee throughout each planning period, or you can have a nominee for a set period of time or for certain events. When requesting a nominee, discuss your needs with your LAC.
How do I get a nominee?
There are two options for appointing a nominee. The most common is for a participant to request a nominee which they can do by contacting the NDIS via 1800 800 1100 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. They can also discuss this with an LAC or Support Coordinator. The other less common way a nominee can be appointed is by the CEO of the NDIA specifically requesting a nominee for a participant.
During your plan, you can change your nominee or, if needed, add another nominee at any time throughout your plan. Having more than one nominee is possible with each nominee only acting on your behalf in certain areas of your plan.
Read more about the benefits of working with an independent, professional Plan Manager. Alternatively, contact our friendly team on 1300 322 273 or email@example.com.