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National Disability Insurance Scheme

Check the GST-free status of NDIS supplies.

Last updated 17 August 2023

If you are a supplier of disability supports and registered for GST, your supplies to a National Disability Insurance SchemeExternal Link (NDIS) participant may be GST-free.

If you make a mix of taxable and GST-free supplies, you may need to review your accounting systems to ensure the correct GST treatment of your supplies.

GST-free NDIS supplies

A supply to a NDIS participant is GST-free if all the following requirements are met:

The explanatory statement to the NDIS DeterminationExternal Link provides examples to assist participants with the types of supplies listed in the NDIS Determination.

NDIS plan is in effect

The participant's NDIS plan must be in effect under section 37 of the National Disability Insurance Scheme Act 2013 (NDIS Act), which means it must be approved by the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA).

The plan ceases to be effective when it is replaced by another plan, or when the NDIS participant ceases to be a participant in the NDIS.

Reasonable and necessary supports

The supply must be of one or more reasonable and necessary supports, as defined in the participant's NDIS plan.

Where the participant’s NDIS plan specifies an amount such as time or quantity of reasonable and necessary supports, any supplies of supports in excess of these specifications will not be a GST-free NDIS supply.

Made under a written agreement

There must be made a written agreement between you, the supplier, and the NDIS participant (or another person).

The written agreement must:

  • identify the NDIS participant
  • state that the supply is a supply of one or more of the reasonable and necessary supports specified in the statement included, under subsection 33(2) of the NDIS Act, in the participant’s NDIS plan.

The written agreement can be between you and a person other than the NDIS participant. Other people can include those who manage the plan and funding for the NDIS participant. This would include the NDIA, a plan management provider registered with NDIA, or a guardian or relative of the NDIS participant.

The written agreement may be a single document or a combination of documents, such as letters between you and the other party and receipts or invoices you issue. It may include documents in electronic form.

As long as you have written evidence of a legally binding obligation for you to make the supply to the NDIS participant and that it is a reasonable and necessary support as specified in the participant’s NDIS plan, the requirement for a written agreement is satisfied.

Example: supply made under a written agreement in accordance with a self-managed participant's NDIS plan

Joe, a participant in the NDIS, has an NDIS plan that specifies that he requires 5 hours of support on a weekly basis. He requests XYZ Co to supply him with the support for a period of 3 months based on the NDIS published price. Joe provides XYZ with a letter identifying:

  • that he is a NDIS participant
  • the type of support he is to be provided with (as specified in his plan)
  • that the support is one of the reasonable and necessary supports specified in Joe’s NDIS plan.

XYZ writes to Joe to confirm its agreement to provide the support including the start date and signs the letter. For the next 3 months, XYZ supplies Joe with the requested support.

The written agreement under requirement 3 is satisfied.

End of example

Note that the written agreement does not need to be made under one document.

Example: supply made under a written agreement in accordance with a participant’s NDIS plan managed by a plan management provider registered with the NDIA

ABB Co is registered with the NDIA as a plan management provider. A number of NDIS participants have engaged ABB to manage their plans for them.

Thanh, a NDIS participant, would like Elite, a provider of disability supports, to deliver one of the reasonable and necessary supports in her plan. With Thanh's consent, ABB emails Elite with Thanh's relevant requirements, including her name and the number of hours of support needed as specified in her plan. The email also states that the support is one of the reasonable and necessary supports specified in Thanh’s NDIS plan. Elite writes to Thanh and ABB setting out the details of the support to be provided and the price to be paid but makes no reference to Thanh's plan. ABB replies in writing to confirm Thanh's agreement to receive the supports from Elite.

The written agreement requirement is satisfied by the written evidence provided by the combination of ABB’s email setting out the supports required, Elite’s letter confirming support arrangements and ABB's letter of acceptance.

Note: Neither Elite's letter nor ABB's letter of acceptance would be sufficient evidence of the written agreement requirement. This is because these 2 documents do not state that the supply is of a reasonable and necessary support as specified in Thanh's plan. ABB’s initial email on its own is also not sufficient evidence of the written agreement because it does not evidence a binding obligation on Elite to make the supplies to Thanh. It is only the combination of the 3 documents that provide sufficient evidence of the written agreement requirement.

End of example

A supply covered by the Disability Services Minister’s Determination

For the supply to be GST-free, as well as meeting the other 3 requirements outlined above, your supply to the NDIS participant must be of a kind covered by the NDIS Determination. The NDIS Determination applies to supplies made on or after 1 July 2021 but before 1 July 2025.

The NDIS Determination has 2 tables:

  • The table in subsection 6(1) – supplies of supports that are GST-free (Table 1).
  • The table in subsection 6(2) – supplies of supports that are GST-free if they are listed in other determinations (Table 2).

If your supply is covered by an item listed in Table 1, the requirement to be covered by the NDIS Determination is satisfied.

If Table 1 doesn't apply, you can consider Table 2. When an item in Table 2 is relevant to your supply, the requirement to be covered by the NDIS Determination is only satisfied if the item is also covered by one of 3 other determinations.

This is explained further below.

Table 1

The supplies covered by Table 1 of the NDIS Determination are:

  • specialist disability accommodation and accommodation or tenancy assistance (the National Disability Insurance Scheme (Specialist Disability Accommodation) Rules 2020External Link sets out the requirements that must be met to supply specialist disability accommodation)
  • assistance in coordinating or managing life stages, transitions and supports, including daily tasks in a group or shared living arrangement
  • household tasks
  • assistance with and training in travel or transport arrangements, excluding taxi fares
  • interpreting and translation
  • assistance to access and maintain education and employment
  • assistive equipment for recreation
  • early intervention supports for early childhood
  • management of funding for supports in a participant’s plan.

Table 2

If your supply is not covered by Table 1, the supply is only covered by the NDIS Determination if it is both:

The supplies listed in Table 2 are:

  • assistance with daily personal activities
  • specialised assessment and development of daily living and life skills, including community participation
  • assistive equipment for general tasks and leisure, including assistive technology specialist assessment, set up and training
  • behavioural support and therapeutic supports
  • home modifications.

The most common examples of supplies covered by Table 2 and any of the other determinations are set out below in Examples.

Examples: supplies that are both covered by Table 2 and one of the 3 other determinations

*Table 2 item in the NDIS Determination (see Note)

Relevant other determination

Examples of supplies covered by Table 2 and one of the 3 other determinations

1. Assistance with daily personal activities

Care DeterminationExternal Link

Personal care

Medication management

Continence management

Training in use of aids and appliances

2. Specialised assessment and development of daily living and life skills, including community participation

Care DeterminationExternal Link

Counselling

Training in use of aids and appliances

Day care

Assessment of person’s care needs

Individual care planning or case management

2. Specialised assessment and development of daily living and life skills, including community participation

Residential Care DeterminationExternal Link

Social activities in a residential care setting

Recreational therapy in a residential care setting

3. Assistive equipment for general tasks and leisure, including assistive technology specialist assessment, set up and training

Care DeterminationExternal Link

Basic equipment for social support (sale or hire)

Provision and monitoring of personal alert systems (sale or hire)

Assessment of person’s care needs

Training in use of aids and appliances

3. Assistive equipment for general tasks and leisure, including assistive technology specialist assessment, set up and training

Residential Care DeterminationExternal Link

Goods to assist with toileting and incontinence management in a residential care setting (sale or hire)

Furnishings in a residential care setting (sale or hire)

4. Behavioural support and therapeutic supports

Care DeterminationExternal Link

Counselling

Personal care

Community paramedical services

Individual care planning or case management

4. Behavioural support and therapeutic supports

Residential Care DeterminationExternal Link

Treatment and procedures in a residential care setting

Support for people with a cognitive impairment in a residential care setting

Emotional support in a residential care setting

Rehabilitation support in a residential care setting

5. Home modifications

Care DeterminationExternal Link

Home modifications which are supplies that assist a person to remain living at home

Note: Table 2 items are within the A New Tax System (Goods and Services Tax) (GST free Supply–National Disability Insurance Scheme Supports) Determination 2021External Link and explanatory statementExternal Link.

Example: supply of when exercise physiology is not GST-free

Bernie, a participant in the NDIS, has a NDIS plan that specifies that he requires exercise physiology on a fortnightly basis. Bernie lives at home and attends Health Co, a clinic (not a hospital), to receive the service. No Medicare benefit is payable for the service.

The supply of exercise physiology services to Bernie satisfies the first 3 elements in that:

  • he is a NDIS participant
  • exercise physiology is a reasonable and necessary support specified in his plan
  • there is a written agreement between Bernie and Health Co.

However, the fourth requirement is not satisfied because the supply of exercise physiology services is not covered by the NDIS Determination. This is because:

  • Table 1 of the NDIS Determination does not cover exercise physiology services.
  • Under Table 2, item 4 lists behavioural and therapeutic supports which includes exercise physiology, but this service is not covered by one of the 3 other determinations unless it is supplied in a residential care facility. The supply to Bernie is provided at Health Co's clinic.

However, a supply of exercise physiology services to Bernie can be GST-free, regardless of whether it is made to an NDIS participant, if:

  • there is a Medicare benefit payable for the service made to Bernie (see medical services)
  • the exercise physiology therapy service is supplied as part of GST-free hospital treatment (see hospital treatment).
End of example

Third party NDIS supplies – plan management

A NDIS participant’s plan may involve other parties. For example, a participant may elect to have their NDIS plan managed by a plan manager. Those services may be GST-free, provided the normal requirements are met.

Example: plan management services – GST-free

Brian is an NDIS participant with a current NDIS plan. He chooses to engage a plan manager – PQR Pty Ltd (PQR) – to manage his NDIS plan funds and coordinate the provision of his NDIS supports. PQR and Brian enter into a written agreement for this purpose. The plan management services that PQR supplies to Brian are a reasonable and necessary support specified in Brian’s NDIS plan. In addition, the plan management services supplied by PQR to Brian are covered by item 9 in Table 1 in the NDIS Determination.

As PQR’s supply of plan management services to Brian also meet all the other conditions set out in section 38-38 of the GST Act, they are GST-free.

End of example

Third party NDIS supplies facilitated by a plan manager

Plan managers can play a vital role for NDIS participants in facilitating the provision of their supports and managing the flow of funds from the NDIA and to providers of supports.

Under normal circumstances, supplies of NDIS supports are made to the participant, not to the plan manager.

Example: NDIS supports facilitated by a plan manager

Following on from the above example, Brian’s NDIS plan also includes assistance with daily personal activities as a reasonable and necessary support. He asks PQR to locate a suitable qualified therapist near his home. Using its database of support providers, PQR offers 3 potential therapists to Brian.

After Brian selects Javier from the 3 therapists, PQR, on behalf of Brian, arranges for Javier to supply the daily personal activities assistance services to Brian.

PQR enters into a written agreement with Javier on behalf of Brian, which identifies Brian as the NDIS participant. The written agreement states that the supply of the daily personal activity's assistance is a supply of one of the reasonable and necessary supports specified in Brian’s NDIS plan.

Javier supplies the agreed daily personal activities assistance to Brian.

The supply of assisting with daily personal activities is covered by item 1 in Table 1 in the NDIS Determination.

It is agreed between PQR and Javier that his services will be invoiced monthly, with the invoices being sent directly to PQR. PQR will then use the NDIS myplace provider portal to pay Javier on behalf of Brian using Brian’s NDIS funds.

This arrangement meets all the requirements of section 38-38 of the GST Act and therefore Javier’s supply of daily personal assistance to Brian is GST-free.

End of example

NDIS supports provided by a third party

When third parties are used by NDIS-registered providers of supports, it is important to distinguish between supplies that are GST-free and those which are not.

Example: supports provided by a third party

Casey is an NDIS participant and self-manages her NDIS plan which includes home and yard maintenance as a reasonable and necessary support since she is not able to undertake these activities herself. LMN Pty Ltd (LMN) specialises in home and yard maintenance for NDIS participants and is a NDIS-registered provider. LMN offers Casey a package deal that will require LMN to maintain her home and yard for a period of 12 months, for a monthly set fee. Casey accepts the offer.

The written agreement Casey enters into with LMN does not specify who will actually perform the maintenance services. For that purpose, LMN has a stable of contractors it uses, and allocates jobs as and when they are due to be performed according to who is available at the time.

The written agreement states that that the supply of the home and yard maintenance services is a supply of one or more of the reasonable and necessary supports specified in Casey’s NDIS plan. The essential home and yard maintenance services supplied to Casey are covered by item 3 in Table 1 in the NDIS Determination.

The supply of the maintenance services from LMN to Casey meets all the requirements of section 38-38 of the GST Act and is therefore GST-free.

The contractors engaged by LMN to provide Casey’s home and yard maintenance are making a separate supply of services to LMN. Since LMN is not an NDIS participant, the supply of services by the contractors to LMN is not GST-free under section 38-38 of the GST Act and is instead taxable, provided all requirements under section 9-5 of the GST Act are met.

End of example

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