What is the difference between the NDIS and Disability Support Pension?

January 3, 2022

NDIS and DSP difference

At Disability Plan Services, we’re often asked what the difference between the NDIS and Disability Support Pension is, and whether you can receive funding from both.  

The good news is that yes, some people are eligible to receive funding from the NDIS and Disability Support Pension at the same time. However, there’s stringent eligibility criteria involved to receive funding from the NDIS and Disability Support Pension, which we will outline in more detail in this blog. We will also address your most asked questions about both supports. 

Firstly, what is the NDIS and Disability Support Pension?

The National Disability Insurance Scheme (most frequently referred to as the NDIS) provides billions of dollars in funding each year to Australians with permanent and significant disability. This funding empowers people with disabilities to form connections to community services and NDIS providers, such as doctors, support groups, education providers and more. To receive NDIS funding, you must be aged between 7 and 65 and meet the eligibility checklist on their website. To view this checklist, click here.  

The Disability Support Pension is financial help for those with a permanent condition that prevents them from working. This includes physical, intellectual, and psychiatric conditions. This payment comes from Services Australia – more commonly known as Centrelink. Like the NDIS, recipients must meet certain non-medical and medical rules, and must make a claim before receiving it. You can learn more about the Disability Support Pension and the eligibility criteria to receive it here

What is the difference between the two?

Funding for the NDIS can only be used for disability-related supports, such as paying invoices from NDIS providers, while the Disability Support Pension pays for an individual’s day-to-day living expenses like food, rent and bills. 

Can you receive funding from the NDIS and Disability Support Pension at the same time?

As mentioned earlier, yes – it is possible to be on an NDIS plan and receive the Disability Support Pension at the same time. As two separate funding models that are managed by two different entities, receiving one does not impact the other. It also means that just because you are eligible for one, it does not mean that you’re automatically entitled to the other. You will need to meet the eligibility criteria outlined by the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) for the NDIS, and the criteria outlined by Services Australia. 

I’m ineligible for both the NDIS and Disability Support Pension. Am I entitled to anything else?

There are a number of supports and services provided by community groups or State and Federal Government that you may be eligible for instead. The NDIS website outlines some of these supports here

I’m unable to go through the process to claim the Disability Support Pension, what can I do?

If you’re unable to make a claim yourself for the Disability Support Pension, you can request someone to deal with Services Australia on your behalf. This authorised representative can enquire, update, act or get payments for you. The Services Australia website has information about this here

I’ve filled out an Access Request Form but need help preparing for an NDIS planning meeting. Is there help available?

An NDIS planning meeting requires participants to produce a lot of documentation about themselves, their disability, and the type of support they’re already receiving. Collating this information can understandably be quite daunting. Thankfully, a plan manager – like Disability Plan Services – can help you to prepare for this planning meeting to help you communicate clearly to the NDIA about what you want and need from your NDIS plan. 

Disability Plan Services has supported many people with disability, just like you, to be prepared for their NDIS planning meeting. If you choose to conduct your NDIS planning meeting face-to-face, you are welcome to bring a supporter with you. Having someone you trust along is a great way to make sure you haven’t forgotten to mention anything. This person can also advocate on your behalf and make sure you’re feeling safe and secure. If you’d like Disability Plan Services to join you at your planning meeting, contact us on 1800 312 870.

If you have further questions about the NDIS, Disability Support Pension or anything else related to disability, we’re here to help. Disability Plan Services is a registered NDIS Provider. Our team are friendly, experienced NDIS Plan Managers who know how to make the most of your funding. To receive assistance in managing your NDIS plan, support coordination or to learn about NDIS and supported employment, contact our team by calling 1800 312 870 or email info@disabilityplanservices.com.au.