Although the NDIS is in place to provide people with disability the funding they need to live their lives, work towards goals, and receive necessary support, sometimes the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) doesn't get it right. If you believe the NDIA have made an error in their decision making process, there are options you can explore to help ensure your NDIS plan is tailored to your support needs.
Internal vs External Reviews
If the NDIA has made a decision that you’re unhappy with, the first step is to request an internal review of the decision. The internal review is completed by a person within the NDIA who was not linked to the original decision. They must review the decision to determine if the original outcome is supported under the NDIS.
However, if you don’t agree with an internal review decision, then you can request that the Administrative Appeals Tribunal complete an external review. The Tribunal is a separate entity to the NDIS, which means the external reviews are carried out independently of the NDIA.
An internal review must be completed before you can request and external review.
What decisions can be reviewed?
Essentially all NDIA related decisions can be reviewed. However, there are some more common decisions that are requested for review, including:
Eligibility to be part of the NDIS (both if the NDIA determine that you are not eligible and if they determine you are no longer eligible)
Plan approval and adequate support funding
Early plan review
Changes to your plan nominee or child representative
What NDIS-funded supports are included in your plan
How your supports are described
How your funding is managed
How long your plan goes for
If the original decision made is reviewable, the NDIA will contact you and let you know in writing.
How to request an internal review
Whether this is your first NDIS plan or your seventh, be sure to check that your plan covers what you discussed with your Local Area Coordinator (LAC). If you have had a NDIS plan before you should also check that the plan matches your previous plan or better supports your needs.
If the plan is not what was discussed and agreed to or it isn’t an improvement from your previous plan, you can request an immediate review. To do this you can either contact the NDIA at your local office or via phone on 1800 800 110 to make the request.
It’s important that you a clear about what you would like changed or what is missing from your plan before you request a review.
If you need assistance with this process to advocate for your rights, a disability advocator can help. If you don’t currently have a disability advocator, you can use the disability advocacy finder here.
How to apply for an external review
If your NDIS plan still doesn’t meet your needs following the internal review, you can apply for the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) to complete the review. The AAT are separate to the NDIA.
The AAT cannot review a decision until the NDIA has had the opportunity to review internally.
If you choose to write a letter or email, it’s important to include the following:
Your name, postal address, telephone number and email address
The date you reviewed the decision
Brief description of the reasons why you think the internal review is wrong
A copy of the internal review outcome
For more information on how to apply for a review with the AAT, check out this video.
For more information about applying for a review by the AAT, visit their website or call 1800 228 333.
What if I have concerns about the decision-making process?
If you are not happy with the way the NDIA managed the review process and decision making, you can make a complaint by filling in a NDIS Complaint form. Once the form has been completed, you can email it to the NDIS at firstname.lastname@example.org, send it via mail or take it to your local NDIS office.
Please note: the new Labor Government and the new Minister for the NDIS, Bill Shorten, have stated they are looking into the recent increase in cases submitted to the AAT with Shorten saying he wants to "find alternative, less costly ways to resolve disputes."
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.