The process of making an access request may involve assessment and examinations at the request of the Agency. The provision of personal information and documentation will be necessary to establish eligibility. Many aspects of the prospective participant’s life may be relevant to deciding whether a person meets the access criteria.
Pay attention to the detail of exactly what the Agency requires and in what form it should be submitted, as this may be vital to advancing the access application. Info
Consider the access criteria in seeking to identify information that it is necessary or helpful to submit to the Agency. Tips
It would be wise to represent to the Agency any circumstances that may delay the person complying with requests from the Agency as this may lengthen the time set for providing information and reports.
Once an Access Request has been successfully submitted, Section 20 requires the Agency to either:
If neither have occurred within 21 days, other parts of the Act become relevant. Info
An access request can be withdrawn and a new access request can be made at a later time. Info
Requests from Agency
The Agency can make a variety of requests when making a decision about the Access Criteria.
The agency may request that the prospective participant undergo an assessment and provide the report. Info
The Agency may request that the prospective participant undergo an examination, whether or not at a particular place, and provide the report. Info
The prospective participant must comply within 28 days unless a longer period is specified in the request [s26].
The Agency must, within 14 days of receiving the information or reports, make an access decision or make a further request.
If the information or reports are not provided to the Agency within this period of time, the prospective participant is taken to have withdrawn the access request, though some Agency discretion exists. Info
A prospective participant who faces repeated requests from the Agency may wish to consider new strategies. Tips
There are a number of options to consider if the Agency decides that the person does not meet the access criteria.
A person can:
- request that an internal review the decision is carried out;
- apply to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal to review the Agency’s decision; or
- make a complaint to the Commonwealth Ombudsman.
If the Agency decides that the prospective participant meets the access criteria, the person becomes a participant and should receive written notice stating the day the person became a participant. [s28] Once a person becomes a participant, there are ongoing requirements to keep in mind and further challenges ahead. Supports will not be available until a plan is created and comes into effect, which in some cases may be conditional on a participant seeking compensation. [s105(3)]
Participants should also remain mindful of the requirement to notify the Agency if relevant circumstances change or are likely to change. Info
If experiencing exceptional need or hardship, the participant should convey the urgency of the circumstances to the Agency, as the Agency has a discretion to commence facilitating the preparation of a participant’s plan. [s32(A)] Info
Ceasing to be a Participant
A person ceases to be a participant when:
- he or she dies
- he or she enters a residential care service or starts being provided with community care on a permanent basis, and this first occurs only after the person turns 65 years of age
- the person’s status as a participant is revoked by the Agency
- the person notifies the Agency in writing that he or she no longer wishes to be a participant
Revocation of Participant Status
The Agency can revoke a person’s status as a participant in the NDIS if satisfied the person:
- does not meet the residence requirements
- does not meet either the disability requirements or early intervention requirements