Making the most of your annual review
A lot can happen over the course of a year. That’s why, once every 12 months*, the NDIS reviews everyone’s plan to make sure it’s still relevant.
Called an annual review, this meeting is essentially a way for you to have your say about your NDIS plan and make any necessary changes for the year ahead. It will cover things such as what you like and dislike about your plan, how you’re tracking with your short-term and long-term goals, and whether your circumstances or needs have changed in any way.
Because your annual review is a fantastic opportunity to tailor your plan to your changing needs and goals, it’s important you make the most out of it. While it might seem a little daunting, with just a little bit of preparation it can be a productive and highly beneficial session.
Step 1. Prepare yourself
Before your meeting, sit down and think about your NDIS journey over the past year and how your NDIS plan has shaped it. Chatting about this with a family member, friend, or an NDIS expert can be a great way to get some insights and clarity on where you’re at and what you should change. If you have Support Coordination, your Support Coordinator can also provide you with additional support to help you prepare for your review.
Some tools to help with the preparation phase include:
- Your NDIS plan - Look at the goals that were determined and the supports you were allocated. Write down the things you’ve achieved, what you would change in your new plan, what your interests and aspirations are, and where you’d like to be in a year.
- Your pre-planning checklist - If you used a pre-planning checklist for your previous meeting with an NDIS planner, looking over this can really help you give perspective on your journey since then. You can even fill in a new checklist (you can find a very handy one on our Resources page) to take into your annual review.
- Your Plan Partners Dashboard - If you’re a Plan Partners customer, you can access your own online Dashboard to see information about all your NDIS budgets. It’s important to keep an eye on these - particularly when you’re going for an annual review - because the NDIS might decide to reduce the budgets in your new plan if you haven’t used your budgets in the old plan. Keep this in mind and try to ensure you use all your allocated budget.
Step 2. Your annual review
During your annual review, your Local Area Coordinator will ask you a series of questions - similar to your initial NDIS planning meeting.
Some important things to remember during your annual review meeting include:
- Remember to relax, breathe and take your time when responding to ensure your answers are clear.
- Bring notes and any supporting documentation that will help you explain why you’re requesting a change to your plan
- If you think a trusted friend or family member will make it easier for you to get through the meeting - bring them along!
- Plan Management – Plan Management supports you in managing your NDIS funds and gives you access to non-registered providers. If you request it, the NDIS will include it in your plan. Even if you currently have Plan Management, make sure to specifically request it again for the year ahead, otherwise it might not be included in your new plan.
- Support Coordination – Support Coordination supports you in finding and connecting with service providers. Like Plan Management, Support Coordination won’t be included in your revised plan by default - even if it’s in your current plan. The NDIS will determine whether you are eligible for this support (more on that here).
- Take notes - To ensure you don’t miss anything and can remember exactly what was said, you might like to write down any key points or details your LAC says.
Step 3. Receiving your new NDIS plan
After your annual review, you’ll receive a new NDIS plan for the year ahead. Once you get your plan, you should immediately read through it closely to make sure you’re happy with it. If you feel an error’s been made or something doesn’t look right, contact your Local Area Coordinator straight away to get the matter resolved. If that doesn’t solve the issue, you could consider asking for a review of your plan – more on that here.
If you’re happy with your new plan, contact Plan Partners as soon as possible so we can make update our system and continue helping you to bring your NDIS plan to life without any interruptions.
Can’t wait for your annual review?
While the NDIS will contact you when it’s time for your annual review, you can request a review at any time if your personal circumstances have changed significantly and you feel your plan is no longer suited to your situation. Here’s how to do this.
While it might seem a little daunting, just remember that the annual plan review is there to help you get the supports you need to achieve your goals - whatever they may be!
Of course you can always contact us to help you prepare for your annual review. Just contact us here or give us a call on 1300 333 700.
* In some cases, NDIS plans cover any time between 3 months or 2 years.