Consultation period

9 September 2021 - 10:00 am To 7 October 2021 - 11:59 pm

A new NDIS Rule: The Participant Service Guarantee

To establish the new Participant Service Guarantee, the Government is creating a new National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) Rule that will give effect to the changes National Disability Insurance Scheme Act 2013 (the Act).

You can read more about the changes to the NDIS Act on the Schedule 1: The Participant Service Guarantee page.

You can read more about the new Participant Service Guarantee Rule below.

You can have your say on the Rule by making a submission.

On this page

What has led to the changes

The Government has committed to introduce a Participant Service Guarantee to cut wait times and red tape and improve the experience of NDIS participants. This recognises that many people were feeling frustrated by uncertainty about how long processes would take or why certain decisions were made about them and their supports.

The 2019 independent review of the NDIS Act (the Tune review) made three recommendations relating to the new Participant Service Guarantee. Alongside changes to the NDIS Act, a new NDIS Rule will provide the detail for how these recommendations will be delivered and improve the participant experience.

The Participant Service Guarantee will set new standards for how long NDIS processes and decisions take. This includes key steps such as making an access decision for a participant, approving a plan, and reviewing or amending a plan.

The Participant Service Guarantee will also include standards for the way the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) engages with people with disability, ensuring it provides transparent, responsive and respectful service.

The new rule will also include ways to measure the performance of the NDIA against the Participant Service Guarantee and gives the Commonwealth Ombudsman ongoing powers to monitor it.

The Australian Government had previously committed to legislate the Participant Service Guarantee by 1 July 2020. However, as consultation processes were delayed due to COVID-19, this was not possible.

The Government is committed to make the Participant Service Guarantee law at the soonest possible opportunity, and is currently working to do this by the end of 2021.

The draft Rule is presented for public comment to enable people with disability and those who support them to consider the proposed changes.

Read more:

What is changing

The Participant Service Guarantee Rule

The details of the Participant Service Guarantee, including the new timeframes and standards for service the NDIA must meet, will be set out in the new Participant Service Guarantee Rule (recommendations 11, 25 and 26 of the 2019 review of the NDIS Act).

The new Rule will:

  • set timeframes for key NDIS processes, including access decisions, plan approvals and plan reviews and amendments
  • set engagement principles, describing how the NDIA works with people with disability
  • set requirements for how NDIA reports its performance against the Participant Service Guarantee.

The NDIA must meet these timeframes and engagement principles. In reporting against the Participant Service Guarantee, its performance will be clear to the public.

You can read the following documents to understand the new Rule:

You can have your say on the Rule by making a submission.

The NDIS Act

The proposed changes to the NDIS Act introduce the concept of the Participant Service Guarantee and enable the creation of the new Participant Service Guarantee Rule which will set out standards the NDIA must follow.

Changes to the NDIS Act will create new laws through Schedule 1 of the National Disability Insurance Scheme Amendment (Participant Service Guarantee and Other Measures) Bill 2021 that establish the Participant Service Guarantee. While the Participant Service Guarantee Rule provides greater detail for what the Guarantee will actually provide for participants.

Read more about the Schedule 1 changes to the NDIS Act.