Avoiding an Overspend of Your NDIS Budget

21 May 2024

Guides & Articles

The amount of funding included in your NDIS plan is based on your disability needs and your personal circumstances. It has been calculated based on the needs that you have put forward during the access process and then your planning meeting. Your NDIS funding can only be used for supports and services that are reasonable and necessary, and take into account any informal supports (friends, family, community connections) that you have in place. A responsibility of being an NDIS participant or nominee is to make sure your supports directly relate to your disability and align with your plan (budget). 

Overspending should be avoided at all times as it brings complications. You are responsible for using your plan as it was intended, which includes the total funding included. There is a high chance you will be left to pay for any invoices out of pocket that have been submitted after your plan budget has been exhausted. The NDIA will not do a plan assessment just because you have used all of your funding before the end of the plan.

What you can do!

You can do many things to ensure you don’t overspend your funding. Being plan-managed is one great tool! You not only have someone doing the administrative side of your invoicing, giving you time to focus on other things, but you will also have access to many budgeting tools. These are some tools that can make a difference:

• Monthly Statements. Every plan manager is required to send you a monthly statement of all invoices paid in that period and where your budgets sit afterwards. We email these out to participants but also post them out to those who don’t have access to email.

• Plan Management Dashboard. Our dashboard is accessible via desktop and mobile app. You can view multiple reports showing an overview of your funding and in-depth budget reports showing how much you have spent and how long you have left of your plan. You can also track funding that has been locked away to providers you have signed service agreements with.

• Low Funding Notifications. We send out email notifications to alert participants if they are below a certain percentage of funding for each of their budgets. This allows you to act proactively (changing your support schedule, reaching out to your my NDIS contact if the sudden reduction in funds is a change in your circumstances) and not reactively after a potential overspend.

Remember, we are always here to help! When you have your plan managed by us at Pathways to Care, our friendly team is always on hand to talk to if you are concerned about your budget. We understand technology isn’t for everyone, and speaking to someone over the phone about your budget might be the best way for you to get an update on your spending.

Changes in Circumstances

There are times when a change of circumstances in your life means your spending doesn’t match your original plan, and you need to request a plan reassessment for a new one that suits your new needs. If you find yourself in this situation, it is important to contact the NDIA as soon as possible. With any request to change your plan, you will still need evidence to support your request for more funding.

Payment Enquiry

A payment enquiry is requesting additional funding to cover supports, services or consumables that have already been provided or paid for personally by the participant/nominee when there is no funding left in the plan. These submissions must be made through the Complaints and Enquiries section of my NDIS provider portal. It is then up to the NDIA to accept or reject them. More often than not, submissions are rejected unless a change of circumstances is submitted and approved prior to submission.

The NDIA may ask for more information before a submission is accepted or rejected. If a participant had more information, we would submit it for them as the plan manager. Once the NDIA makes a final rejection of a submission, a new submission cannot be made. The invoice payment then falls to the participant and provider to navigate.

The NDIA has made it clear that it is cracking down on payment enquiries and the mentality that invoices will just be paid for regardless of the circumstances behind the overspend.

It's better to be on top of things! 

Submitting payment enquiries can be stressful, a long process, and, more often than not, unsuccessful. It is so important to be on top of your spending with the tools we have and to communicate openly with us as your plan manager and providers. Being proactive about your budget is crucial in preventing possible overspending.