What’s the difference and what are their roles?
Local Area Coordinator or ‘LAC’
A LAC, short for Local Area Coordinator, and is usually an external organisation, working on behalf of the NDIA* for a specific area. They’re not the NDIS itself, but they help you talk to the NDIS.
Here are some things they help with:
- Support planning your NDIS Plan: LACs can look at your plan, but they can’t tell you what to ask for.
- Plan Submission: They’re like the ‘middle-man’, and send your plan to the NDIS Planner/Delegate with recommendations based on the information you have provided to them. If a certain support isn’t approved, you can ask your LAC why.
- Putting Plans into Action: Some LACs help make your plan work for you and help you find services in your area.
Usually, if you’re 9 or older, you’ll talk to an LAC. They can answer questions and talk about your plan, but they can’t decide on plans or money – that’s the NDIA’s job.
Early Childhood Early Intervention (ECEI) Partner
The Early Childhood Early Intervention Partner helps kids under 9 and their families gain access to the scheme.
They’re local groups paid by the NDIA to help young kids with disabilities. In South Australia, the main ECEI partner is Kudos
. These groups have people who know a lot about helping children with developmental delays or disabilities. The words ‘Early Childhood Early Intervention Partner’ mean both the group and the people in it.
Like LACs, Early Childhood Early Intervention Partners get info from you, but they can’t tell you what to do. They don’t decide on plans or money – that’s the NDIA’s job. They’re the ‘middle-man’ between families with children 9 years and under and the Planner/Delegate.
Planner / Delegate
An NDIS Planner/Delegate works for the NDIA and has special permission to make decisions under the NDIS rules. If your situation is tricky, you might get a Planner/Delegate instead of a LAC to speak to about your plan at the planning stage. They lead meetings and can discuss your plan with you, making the final decision on what gets funded.
So what happens if I need more support and I’m not getting it from my LAC?
When you are applying for a new plan, you can ask for funding in your plan for a Support Coordinator.
Support Coordinators can:
- Assist you to get ready for plan reviews, collating reports from your therapists and other services
- Help you find supports that meet your needs and address your NDIS goals
- Help you to liaise with all of your services
- Help you to plan how to spend your NDIS Funding and budget for all of the services you need over the plan period
What does a Disability Advocate do?
An advocate is someone who can support you, or talk on your behalf if something is not going right or you need more help. This can be someone you trust and who knows your needs like a family member or friend. There is also the option of accessing a disability advocate.
We hope that this information helps you to get the support you need and unpack some of those questions you might have about who’s who in the NDIS.
If you have any questions, reach out to our friendly team here at Creative Therapy Adelaide, we are only too happy to help!
*NDIA is the acronym for the National Disability Insurance Agency, whereas NDIS is the name of the ‘Scheme’ National Disability Insurance Scheme.
Hey there! Please note that the content in this blog is designed for general insight, and should not replace professional advice. While we strive for accuracy, we can’t be held accountable for decisions made based on the blog’s content. Thank you for reading, and be sure to supplement your knowledge with further research.