Creating a voice for the Disability Sector
Creating a voice for the Disability Sector
NEW TO THE NDIS? Navigating NDIS language and acronyms made easy

NEW TO THE NDIS? Navigating NDIS language and acronyms made easy

14 September 2021

There are so many acronyms across the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) it can be difficult to keep up and understand.

Here, we spell out the most common acronyms and what they mean.

First - the NDIS. It is a Commonwealth Government initiative which aims to provide all Australians who acquire a permanent disability before the age of 65, which substantially impacts how they manage everyday activities, with the reasonable and necessary support they need to live an ordinary life.

The National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) is an independent statutory agency which aims to implement the NDIS and support a better life for hundreds of thousands of Australians with a significant and permanent disability and their families and carers.

The most popular acronym is SW or SC - Support Worker or Support Coordinator. The worker’s role is to provide support to NDIS-funded participants, promoting choice and control and assisting participants in achieving their personal goals. A Coordinator is a funded support to help participants implement their plan, manage their supports and build participant capacity to manage their own supports.

LAC is another acronym used very regularly and is a vital person to get to know right at the start of your NDIS journey. They help participants understand and access the NDIS and work with them to develop and use their NDIS plan. For most people aged seven years and older, an LAC will be their main point of contact for the NDIS.

DES is simply a Disability Employment Service Provider - they play a specialist role in helping people with disability, injury or health condition get ready to look for a job, find a job and keep a job. 

You might hear of someone lodging an AAT or an s100?

These are usually made after you have received a review of your plan and are dissatisfied.

If you are still not happy after an internal review of a decision, you can apply for an Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) review. This is a tribunal outside the NDIA.

You cannot ask the AAT to review an NDIA decision until the NDIA has internally reviewed it.

For information about applying for an AAT review, visit AAT: National Disability Insurance Scheme applicants.

When you ask for an s100 review, it’s because you believe the NDIA’s is incorrect and you need to escalate the complaint.

Visit the NDIS Internal Review of a decision page to download the application form. You don't have to use this How to review a planning decision form, but it can help you describe why you want an internal review of the decision.

And the list goes on. Too many to mention here. But have a look at the following links and you’ll be throwing NDIS acronyms out there like a pro!

Visit Glossary: NDIS key terms and acronyms defined,, or for more information.

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