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Applying for the NDIS


If you are not currently receiving disability services this section will help you understand what will be required for you to gain access to the NDIS.

Application Process

The application process involves:

  • Completion of access request from (ARF) and

  • Letters, assessments or other reports from a health or education professional that details your impairment, how long it will last and how it impacts on your daily life

You will need to understand some facts about your disability.

  • What your disability is called. The NDIS call this your ‘diagnoses’.

  • Whether your disability is permanent and will not go away. It does not matter if you need different levels of support at times.

  • What impairment your disability causes. The NDIS are interested in whether you need funding support, how much and how often.

You will need to provide information to the NDIA as evidence that you have a disability. The NDIA will manage your private information carefully so you do not need to worry about talking to them.  The following sections deal with the specific information involved in ARF and the supporting evidence form.

As many people find this process difficult and sometimes daunting MyTherapyChoice offers free assistance in the process through email on the website and phone help line 1800-MYTHERAPY.

Access Request form (ARF)

 Some evidence you might consider having ready for transition into the scheme are:

  • A letter or report from your doctor or specialist

  • Assessments by doctor or specialist

  • A diagnostic test(s)

  • Previous plans such as a Client Support Plan (CSP), Health Support Plan (HSP) or Behaviour Support Plan (BSP)

  • Service agreement with disability support agencies.

Supporting Evidence of Disability form

This form tells the NDIS about the level of support that you need because of your disability. Some types of disability are identified by the NDIS as conditions that mean that a person will usually need support. This means that no further functional assessment is needed using the evidence of disability form.

Other people might have to provide evidence of their disability and the way this affects them before they can access funding for support. The evidence of disability form and some information for your medical practitioner are available from the NDIS.

The Evidence of Disability form has parts that need to be filled in by a doctor or a specialist, and parts that can be completed by another health professional such as a therapist.

Part 2 of the Evidence of Disability form asks your doctor to document what your disability or diagnosis is permanent. If you have other evidence of this from your doctor, such as a letter or report, you can use this instead of the form.

Part 3 of the Evidence of Disability form asks for information about the way your disability impacts your daily functioning. This part of the form can be completed by a health professional such as a therapist who might already be supporting you. You may also provide other written information from a health professional that documents the impact of your condition. You can use this instead of the form.

*If you have a disability that is included on the NIDS list of ‘permanent impairment/functional capacity – no further assessment required’ you do not have to complete part 3 of the form.*

Permanent impairment/function capacity – no further assessment required

If you have one of the conditions listed below, you do not need to complete part C of the evidence of Disability form or provide evidence of the impact of your disability on your life.

  1. Intellectual disability diagnosed and assessed as moderate, severe or profound in accordance with current DSM criteria (e.g. IQ 55 points or less and severe deficits in adaptive functioning)

  2. Autism diagnosed by a specialist multi-disciplinary team, pediatrician, psychiatrist or clinical psychologist experienced in the assessment of Pervasive Development Disorder and assessed having severity of level 2 or level 3.

  3. Cerebral palsy diagnosed and assessed as severe (e.g. assessed as level 3,4,5 on the Gross Motor Function Classification System – GMFCS)

  4. Genetic conditions that consistently result in permanent and severe intellectual and physical impairments:

  • Angelman Syndrome

  • Coffin-Lowry syndrome in males

  • Cornelia de Lange syndrome

  • Cri du Chat syndrome

  • Lesch-Nyhan syndrome

  • Leigh syndrome

  • Leukodystrophies:

○ Alexander disease (infantile and neonatal forms)

○ Canavan disease

○ Krabble disease (globoid cell leukodystrophy) – Infantile form

○ Pelizaeus-Merzbacher Disease (Connatal form)

  • Edwards syndrome (Trisomy 18 – full form):

○ Autosomal recessive dystrophic epidermolysis bullosa

○ Hallopeau-Siemens type

○ Herlitz Junctional Epidermolysis Dystrophica

  • Lysosomal storage disorders resulting in severe intellectual and physical impairments:

○ Gaucher disease Types 2 and 3

○ Niemann-Pick disease (Type A and C)

○ Pompe disease

○ Sandhoff disease (infantile form)

○ Schindler disease (Type 1)

○ Tay-Sachs disease (infantile form)

  • Mucopolysaccharidoses – the following forms:

○ MPS 1-H (Hurler syndrome)

○ MPS III (San Fillipo syndrome)

  • Osteogenesis Imperfecta (severe forms):

○ Type II – with two or more fractures per year and significant deformities severely limiting ability to perform activities of daily living.

  • Patau syndrome

  • Rett syndrome

  • Spinal Muscular Atrophies of the following types:

○ Werdnig-Hoffmann disease (SMA Type 1 – Infantile form)

○ Dubowitz disease (SMA Type 2 – Infantile form)

○ X-Linked spinal muscular atrophy

  1. Spinal cord injury or brain injury resulting in paraplegia, quadriplegia or tetraplegia, or hemiplegia where there is severe or total loss of strength and movement in the affected limbs of the body.

  2. Permanent blindness in both eyes, diagnosed and assessed by an ophthalmologist as follows:

  • Corrected visual acuity (extent to which an object can be bought into focus) on the Snellen Scale must be less than or equal to 6/60 in both eyes or;

  • Constriction to within 10 degrees or less of central fixation in the better eye, irrespective of corrected visual acuity (i.e. visual fields are less of arc of 10 degrees or less) or;

  • A combination of visual defect resulting in the same degree of visual impairment as that occurring in the above points. (An optometrist report is not sufficient for NDIS purposes)

  1. Deaf blindness confirmed by ophthalmologist and audiologist and assessed as resulting in permanent and severe to total impairment of visual function and hearing.

  2. Amputation or congenital absence of two of more limbs (functional impact to be assessed when using any aids, equipment or prosthesis available to the person.

If you have a disability not listed, it does not mean you are not eligible. You may require further assessment to see what level of support you need.

Once Eligibility is Established

Once your eligibility is established, you will be given a reference number that you can use when you contact the NDIA to talk about eligibility and access to support. The first process is called ‘checking your access requirements’. Once your eligibility is approved, you will then become a ‘participant’ in the NDIS.