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18 July 2023

What is a combination managed NDIS Plan and how can it work for you?

The NDIS is designed to give you choice and control over your supports and how they are managed.

Today, we take a look at the benefits of using a combination of self management and plan management for your NDIS Plan. We call it a combination managed plan and it can offer more options and greater flexibility.

First, a recap on the options for managing your NDIS Plan:
1.     Plan management
2.     Self management
3.     Agency (NDIA) management
4.     A combination of the above.

Check out Managing your NDIS funds: What are the options? for more details.


Combination managed NDIS Plans.

A combination managed plan is when you choose more than one way to manage your plan – a combination of plan management, self management or Agency management.

The benefit of a combination managed plan is that you can manage each part of your NDIS budget in a way that suits your needs. It all depends on your circumstances, how involved you want to be… and how much admin you want to do!

For example, you may self manage one part of your plan and use plan management for the rest.

  • Plan management offers flexibility to choose your own providers (whether they are registered with the NDIS or not) and you also get support with administration and bookkeeping. There are no out of pocket expenses. Capped pricing means some supports are cheaper under plan management than self management.
  • Self management offers more flexibility but more responsibilities. You may need to open a separate bank account. You will need to take care of your own budgets and invoice claims and payments to your providers. Prices are not capped which means you might pay more for supports than the amount set in the NDIS Pricing Arrangements and Price Limits.
  • Agency management offers the least amount of choice and control. You can only use NDIS registered providers. The NDIA manages your budgets and pays invoices on your behalf.

With plan management and self management options, you can use any provider you want (like your local cleaner, gardener or JB-HiFi). They do not have to be registered with the NDIS.


Why choose a combination of self management and plan management?

  • You currently self manage and want to lighten the burden of NDIS administration
  • You are juggling NDIS Plans for multiple family members and need support to manage the finances
  • You would like the support of a plan manager to help you navigate the NDIS, help you manage your budget and pay providers on your behalf
  • You want to pay providers (like therapists) above the rate set by the NDIS Pricing Arrangements and Price Limits*
  • You need items that are difficult to obtain through registered providers.

*Note: If you decide to pay a provider above this rate, you will only be able to claim the amount set by the NDIS for this service. Any costs above and beyond that rate will be out of your own pocket.


Self management/plan management combination.

A self management/plan management combination is ideal if you want to engage a provider (such as a therapist) directly and have the option pay them at a higher rate than the NDIS Pricing Arrangements and Price Limits. In this case, you would self manage your Capacity Building budget and have your Core and Capital supports budgets plan managed.

Alternatively, you could choose to self manage your Core budget and use plan management for Capacity Building and Capital supports. That way you get the flexibility of self managing consumables and a plan manager to help you navigate the NDIS and assist with administration and bookkeeping for the other budgets.


An example.

Jasmine self manages NDIS Plans for her two young children. She really likes the flexibility of being able to choose providers to suit her children’s changing needs. She has an occupational therapist with an hourly rate higher than the NDIS Pricing Arrangements. She’d like to free up the time it takes to do the paperwork and payments so she can spend more time with her children.

Solution: Jasmine changes her children’s plans to include plan management but keeps the Assistance with Daily Living component of her Capacity Building budget as self managed so she can continue to have her favourite support worker who is paid above NDIS prices.


Switch any time.

You can change the way you manage your NDIS Plan at any time. If your circumstances change, you can change the way you manage your plan to suit.

If you’d like to find out more about a combination managed plan, simply call the Leap in! Crew on 1300 05 78 78 or use our online chat service. We’re here to answer your questions.


Originally published on 24 April 2020, updated on 10 July 2023 .


Further reading.

What is plan management?

5 plan management myths busted.

Plan management: Choosing your own providers.

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