Making the choice – Plan managed vs self-managed NDIS

October 4, 2021

NDIS planning

If you’re new to the NDIS, you might be exploring the benefits of plan managed vs self-managed NDIS plans. There is no ‘one size fits all’ approach when it comes to NDIS plan management, so it is very important to weigh up the pros and cons of both options before making your decision.

In this blog we take a deep dive into plan managed vs self managed NDIS plans so you can be armed with the facts.


Self-managed NDIS plans

As the name suggests, self-managed NDIS plans involve you overseeing your funding. If you opt to self-manage, you’ll be responsible for all the financial administration required with your NDIS plan. 

What it entails: Self-management involves (but is not limited to) monitoring your NDIS budget, making claims via the NDIS portal, paying for your supports and service providers, and keeping records for auditing purposes. Most people that opt to self-manage their plan do so because they enjoy the independence and flexibility of arranging and paying for their supports. 

Managing your NDIS plan comes with a lot of responsibility. You’ll need to be comfortable with making agreements with your NDIS providers about the supports you receive (including how they will be provided and paid for) and advising the NDIA of any significant changes in your circumstances that make you unable to self-manage your plan. 

It is also important to note that with this option, you may have to pay providers with your own money and submit requests for reimbursement through the NDIS portal. Self-management requires you to be in control of your income and keep enough money aside for expenses related to your plan.

Self-management may suit you if:

  • you enjoy record-keeping and being organised;
  • you’re up for the challenge of tracking your budgets to ensure your funding will last;
  • you have the means to keep receipts and invoices; and
  • you are prepared to potentially be audited. 

Self-management may not suit you if:

  • you cannot put aside at least 1 hour a week for the administration required;
  • you do not have the ability to extensively research the NDIS;
  • you are not savvy with record keeping;
  • you have poor time management; or
  • you are not familiar with the NDIS portal.


Plan managed

The alternative option to self-managing your NDIS plan is to have it managed by a third-party plan management agency of your choosing, such as Disability Plan Services. 

What it entails: A plan manager ongoing the difficult administration of your plan funds, so there’s no need to stress about paying suppliers or budgeting. A plan manager will maximise your funding and provide you with recommendations based on your funds and goals. 

A common misconception about plan management is that the only way to have control over your NDIS plan is to self-manage, but this is not the case! When you opt to engage professional plan managers, you still have a say on how your funds are spent.

Plan management may suit you if:

  • you do not have the means to be out-of-pocket to pay NDIS providers;
  • you are not savvy at record keeping;
  • you struggle with budgeting;
  • you do not have time to allocate to self-managing your NDIS plan; and 
  • you wish to work with plan managers who can help you achieve your goals.

Plan management may not suit you if:

  • you have a passion for administration tasks and want to handle your NDIS plan yourself. 


Getting started with a plan manager

So, you’ve weighed up the pros and cons of plan managed vs self-managed NDIS plans and have decided professional plan management is the best option for you. Great! From here, it’s easy to get connected with a plan management provider like Disability Plan Services.

During your planning meeting with the NDIS, inform the staff that you would like a plan manager to support you. From there, the NDIS will include funding in your plan to pay for your plan manager. Don’t stress – funding for a plan manager does not take away money from your other services and supports in your budget.

If you are self-managing your NDIS plan and would prefer to swap to plan managed, call the NDIS on 1800 800 110 to enquire about including plan management in your existing plan. 

If you want the support of professionals with extensive NDIS plan management experience, our team can help you make the most of your funding. For ideal NDIS plan management and support coordination from people you can trust, get in touch with Disability Plan Services by calling 1800 312 870 or email