11 October 2020
Plan Management & Self-Management – What’s the Difference?
A decision you have to make when setting up your NDIS Plan is what is the best way to manage your NDIS funds. How do you know what’s best? Many people don’t understand the differences between Plan Management and Self-Management. Which is best option for you? There’s no right or wrong answer to this question, but here’s some details on self-management and plan management to ensure you are making an informed decision.
What ways can you manage your NDIS funds?
Every NDIS participant gets a choice in how they manage their funding. During your planning meeting you’ll be asked to nominate if you’d prefer to manage your NDIS funding yourself, enlist a Plan Manager, have the NDIA manage it, or use a combination of all three.
NDIA Management means that you are only able to use service providers that are registered with the NDIS. Many providers, particularly sole traders and independent support workers are not registered with the NDIS, so they won't be able to support you.
If choosing Self-Management or Plan Management, you are allowed to use unregistered providers. So, for lots of participants, who would like flexibility in what services they use it comes down to choosing between these two options.
What is Self-Management?
If you choose Self-Management, you are responsible for managing all your NDIS finances yourself. That means paying your service providers using your own money and then claiming that money back using the NDIA portal, keeping receipts or a record of all your previous invoices in case you are audited, and keeping track of how much of each budget you’ve spent so you don’t run out or go over budget.
Both Self-Management and Plan Management give you the flexibility to access providers who are not registered with the NDIS, however Plan Management providers must follow the NDIS price guide, while Self-Management means your service providers can charge as much as they want.
What is Plan Management?
Plan Management gives the management of your NDIS funds over to a professional. It’s your own personal bookkeeper or accountant. Plan Managers are fully funded by the NDIS so if you ask for funding Plan Mangement, for Plan Management will be included in your NDIS plan, on top of all other budgets.
Plan Managers will pay your service provider’s invoices, help you track your budgets and give you a monthly statement to keep you on track, they keep a record of all your invoices, and are on hand to help you with your NDIS questions. Learn more about Plan Management.
Essentially Plan Management takes all the financial stress away from you but still offers you flexibility. You can go to appointments or have services come to you and you don’t have to worry about paying them. It’s all done for you.
If you'd like to have a Plan Manager to support you, just ask for Plan Management in your planning meeting – it is your legal right to have it included in your plan.
Which one is right for you?
This is really dependent on your situation and how much time you have. If you enjoy being very hands-on with your finances and don’t mind keeping detailed records, then Self-Management might be right for you. Many people feel they don't have the time, the patience or the skills to manage their own NDIS finances and would rather get a professional Plan Management provider such as LotUs Assist to support them.
The answer really is that neither is better or worse, it’s entirely down to personal preference. Plan Management is open to everyone no matter what stage of their NDIS journey they’re at. There are no eligibility criteria for getting it included in your plan, so if you want support with your finances, you’re entitled to it – always!
Why choose to use LotUs Assist for Plan Management?
Simply because plan management is our business.
- You get a dedicated Plan Manager
- Our focus is YOU!
- We pay invoices within 3 days
- You will have a personalised service, including choice and control over the providers you use
- You will have the flexibility of using NDIS registered and non-registered service providers, which provides greater choices in the community
- We are here to take the stress out of managing the financial side of your NDIS plan and budget
- We can negotiate pricing to pay less than the NDIS Price Guide and Support Catalogue
- Make value for money decisions in line with your plan
- Process and claim invoices from your services providers
- Pay bills on your behalf
- View your plan on the myplace portal to keep track of your budget
- You will receive monthly expenditure reports so you can stay up to date with what has been paid and what funds you have left in your NDIS plan
Get in touch with our team
Whether you want to go it alone and self-manage or would like a helping hand and get a Plan Manager, the NDIS gives you the freedom to make that choice. Remember, no two people’s experiences are the same and no funding option will be right for everyone, so if you have any questions be sure to contact our friendly team on 02 4033 2003 or leave your details here and we will contact you.
1. All NDIS participants must choose how they would like to manage their funds.Plan Management
and Self-Management have the benefit that you can use unregistered providers.
2. A Plan Manager is a professional who takes on the financial administration that comes with an
NDIS plan, while Self-Management leaves that with the participant.
3. There is no criteria for having Plan Management included in your plan, so if you want some
support with managing your NDIS funding and invoices, let them know in your planning meeting.
4. Plan Management does not affect any of your other budgets and there are no restrictions on how
many times you can receive funding for Plan Management – it’s entirely up to you!
5. If you Self Manage your NDIS funding be sure to keep all your invoices, as you can be audited by
6. Plan Management providers help you track your budgets, so if you decide to self-manage be sure
to track these – if you go over budget you will have to pay out of your own pocket.
What others are saying
“Before I started talking to Helen I was in a very dark place, I had no motivation to do anything, I was constantly putting myself down and doubting myself in every way possible. Helen has helped me in so many ways.
Assisted in making my doctors appointments, helping me with my strategies when I started to feel down again and making sure I was on track with my mental health care plan while still being there for me every step of the way. She has been an incredible support to get me to better myself and be in a much happier place.
I do not know where I would be today if it wasn’t for Helen’s constant help and support over the last year! I am so grateful to have had Helen by my side and I could not be more thankful for everything she has done for me.”
Thank you to you and your company for such prompt payment with invoices its muchly appreciated and I look forward to working with you guys moving forward.
I’m sending you this email to highly commend your staff member, Jayne Cumberland.
I’ve worked with Jayne with a participant at Coomba Park. Jayne is hands on, very passionate about trying to achieve good outcomes for participants. Jayne talks to participants in a very non judgmental, supportive manner and participants feel at ease very quick. She is generally very interested in their welfare.
Jayne is also very supportive to support staff too. I know first hand.
She's a great asset to your company.
I just want to praise Jayne for how extremely hard she has worked and for everything she and Lotus Assist have done to get all my supports in place. After previous experiences with Support Coordinators nothing has compared to the support and work Jayne has done for me, and I absolutely love her to pieces. I just cannot believe how lucky I am.
“I am a Social Worker and started working with Helen In 2017. She was my Team Leader and I was employed as a Support Facilitator. Helen taught me all about the National Disability Scheme (NDIS) and the role of Support Coordination. Helen was an excellent supervisor who showed great compassion for people with any type of needs for their wellbeing. I am privileged to have worked with her.”
Having worked with Nicole for many years I cannot recommend her highly enough. She continually strives to provide impeccable customer service. She prides herself on supporting the community and delivers prompt and professional solutions to anything she is faced with. Her attention to detail and productivity is second to none. Nicole goes out of her way to make things as easy and stress free as possible for others. Her empathetic outlook sees her providing a service that is professional, simple and fast, time and time again. There is no one I would trust more.
“Helen is the benchmark that all Support Coordinators should aspire to. Over the many years I have known her, Helen has continually demonstrated an outstanding and unwavering empathy, respect and dedication to her clients and those most vulnerable within the community, through her work and in her capacity as a volunteer.
Her extensive experience and contribution within the industry spanning pre-NDIS, NDIS start-up, NDIS test site through to the present day cement Helen as a leading industry expert.
Helen’s experience coupled with her vast network of allied health professionals and not for profit organisations guarantees Helen is best placed to share YOUR journey with YOUR best interests at heart.”