Unregistered NDIS providers

Not all NDIS providers need register with the NDIS Commission. However, registration can provide some assurance to NDIS participants that the NDIS provider’s services and supports meet the level of quality and safety stated in the NDIS Practice Standards.

Who can engage an unregistered NDIS provider?

NDIS participants whose plan is self-managed or plan managed can use unregistered NDIS providers in most circumstances.

A ‘self-managed plan’ is where an NDIS participant or their plan nominee engages NDIS supports and services themselves. A ‘plan managed plan’ is where an NDIS participant engages a registered NDIS provider to provide plan management services.

NDIS participant whose plan is self-managed or plan managed must only use registered NDIS providers for the following supports or services:

  • specialist disability accommodation
  • supports or services during which there is or is likely to be a need to use a regulated restrictive practice
  • specialist behaviour supports that involve undertaking behaviour support assessment of the participant or developing a behaviour support plan for the participant.

Unregistered provider obligations

NDIS Code of Conduct

All registered and unregistered NDIS providers and their workers are required to comply with the NDIS Code of Conduct. There are guidelines available to help both NDIS providers and workers understand their obligations under the NDIS Code of Conduct.

Self-managed participants and registered plan managers can make unregistered providers and their workers aware of their obligations under the NDIS Code of Conduct.

Complaints management

Unregistered providers must be able to effectively manage complaints that may concern the quality and safety of supports and services being provided.

The NDIS Commission can support people to make a complaint directly to a registered or unregistered NDIS provider. You can also complain to us, preferably after you have tried to resolve the complaint directly with the provider. If a complaint raises a compliance issue, we have powers to take action.

Anyone who is the subject of a complaint has the right to fair treatment. This includes informing a person about a complaint and providing them with a reasonable opportunity to respond to any allegations and proposed action.

Worker screening

The NDIS Worker Screening Check is now live nationally. As an unregistered NDIS provider, you have the option of asking workers that you employ or otherwise engage to demonstrate they have an NDIS Worker Screening clearance, or to ask them to obtain a clearance by undergoing an NDIS Worker Screening Check.

You can also ask workers to demonstrate that they have an alternative check or clearance that meets the requirements in the transitional and special arrangements that apply in the state or territory where you provide supports and services to people with disability.

Under the new national worker screening arrangements, a clearance obtained through an NDIS Worker Screening Check will be recognised as a clearance in any state or territory.

Self-managed NDIS participants can also individually decide if they require workers of unregistered NDIS providers who provide supports and services to them to undertake an NDIS Worker Screening Check.

Tertiary and TAFE students employed or otherwise engaged by a registered NDIS provider – information for universities and Registered Training Organisations

Tertiary and TAFE students employed or otherwise engaged by a registered NDIS provider are required to have an NDIS Worker Screening clearance or an acceptable state or territory check under the transitional and special arrangements to work in a risk assessed role with NDIS participants. The NDIS Worker Screening Check is available only to those delivering NDIS supports and services to NDIS participants.

Workers (including tertiary and TAFE students) can apply for an NDIS Worker Screening Check through the Worker Screening Unit in the state or territory they live or work in.

Universities and Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) will need access to the NDIS Worker Screening Database to verify tertiary or TAFE students for the purposes of the Worker Screening Check. To request access to the NDIS Worker Screening Database, an university or RTO representative will need to complete the access form. The representative will receive an email with an outcome to their access request. If approved, they will receive instructions on how to login. A PRODA account is also required to login. If the representative does not already have one, they can register for one using the details in the access approval email.

The university or RTO must be registered for access to the NDIS Worker Screening Database so a student can select them on their NDIS Worker Screening Check application.

When a student makes an application for an NDIS Worker Screening Check, as part of the application process, they will be required to select an employer to verify their application. They can choose their university or Registered Training Organisation (RTO) as the employer. The representative of the university or RTO will then receive a request to verify the student’s application for an NDIS Worker Screening Check.

When the worker (including tertiary and TAFE students) attends their placement, it is the responsibility of the registered NDIS providers to ensure that if the worker is in a risk assessed role they have a worker screening clearance that meets the requirements of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (Worker Screening—Practice Standards) Rules 2018 (the Rules). This helps ensure that key personnel and workers in these roles do not pose an unacceptable risk to the safety and wellbeing of NDIS participants.

For more information on the NDIS Worker Screening Database, including how to apply for access to and use the Database, please refer to the NDIS Worker Screening page, flow chart and Quick Reference Guide.

For more information on the NDIS Worker Screening Check, please refer to our website and fact sheets.

Additional requirements of some states/territories

In Queensland, it is an offence for unregistered NDIS providers to engage a person subject to a suspension, interim bar or exclusion.

Refer to the Worker Screening Unit in your state or territory for details of any additional requirements:

NDIS Worker Screening Database

The NDIS Commission is responsible for establishing, operating and maintaining the NDIS Worker Screening Database that supports the NDIS Worker Screening Check. The NDIS Worker Screening Database:

  • contains a register of cleared and excluded workers from all states and territories to enable national portability of clearances
  • supports national ongoing monitoring of the conduct of workers with clearances
  • means NDIS providers across the country can sponsor applications and check the clearances of prospective workers through the NDIS Worker Screening Database, without needing to contact individual state and territory Worker Screening Units
  • helps NDIS providers with record-keeping requirements

The NDIS Worker Screening Database will be available to unregistered NDIS providers and self-managed participants (or their representative or nominee) who have been approved to access it by the NDIS Commission.

To request access to the NDIS Worker Screening Database, please complete an application form.

Refer to the Quick reference guide – Unregistered Provider - Request access to the NDIS Worker Screening Database for assistance.

Further information about NDIS Worker Screening is available on our Worker Screening overview page.