Worker Screening Requirements

From 1 February 2021, if you are a worker delivering NDIS supports and services you may need to have a clearance issued under an NDIS Worker Screening Check.

What is worker screening?

Worker screening is a way to help check that the people who are working, or wish to work, with NDIS participants don't present an unacceptable risk to people with disability. Worker screening is an important tool in the recruitment, selection and screening processes of an NDIS provider, and assists in the ongoing review of the suitability of workers.

A new NDIS Worker Screening Check is coming

The new NDIS Worker Screening Check will form part of the National Disability Insurance Scheme Quality and Safeguarding Framework.

From 1 February 2021, the NDIS Worker Screening Check will replace the different arrangements currently operating in each state or territory, setting a minimum national standard that all workers engaged in risk assessed roles must meet. Some states and territories may still have additional requirements in some circumstances, e.g. people working with children may need to undertake additional screening.

Until the NDIS Worker Screening Check commences, registered NDIS providers will need to ensure that the workers they engage in risk assessed roles have an acceptable check that meets requirements under the transitional and special arrangements that apply in the state or territory where they provide NDIS supports and services to people with disabilities.

For a list of the current requirements in your state or territory, visit our transitional and special arrangements page.

What is the NDIS Worker Screening Check?

The NDIS Worker Screening Check is an assessment of whether a person who works, or seeks to work, with people with disability poses a risk to them. The assessment will determine whether a person is cleared or excluded from working in certain roles with people with disability.

The NDIS Worker Screening Check will be conducted by worker screening units in the state or territory where a person applies for the check. The worker screening unit also makes the decision about whether a person is cleared or excluded. Registered NDIS providers are required to ensure that they only engage workers who have been cleared in certain roles, called risk assessed roles.

When will the NDIS Worker Screening Check start in my state or territory?

All states and territories will commence the NDIS Worker Screening Check on 1 February 2021. Transitional and special arrangements are in place for all states and territories (except Western Australia) until the NDIS Worker Screening Check commences.

Once rolled out nationally, the NDIS Worker Screening Check will enable a registered NDIS provider to engage a worker with a valid clearance from any state or territory to deliver NDIS supports and services in a risk assessed role.

When do I need to have an NDIS Worker screening Check?

If you work for a registered NDIS provider

You will need to undertake an NDIS Worker Screening Check and obtain a clearance if you are to be engaged in a risk assessed role for a registered NDIS provider.

Until the NDIS Worker Screening Check commences, you will need to have an acceptable check that meets the requirements in the transitional and special arrangements that apply in the state or territory where you are, or will be, engaged in a risk assessed role providing NDIS supports and services. For a list of the current requirements in your state or territory, visit our transitional and special arrangements page.

A risk assessed role is:

  • a key personnel role of a person or entity, as defined in s11A of the National Disability Insurance Scheme Act 2013 (for example, a CEO or a Board Member)
  • a role for which the normal duties include the direct delivery of specified supports or specified services to a person with disability
  • a role for which the normal duties are likely to require more than incidental contact with people with disability, which includes:
    • physically touching a person with disability; or
    • building a rapport with a person with disability as an integral and ordinary part of the performance of normal duties; or
    • having contact with multiple people with disability as part of the direct delivery of a specialist disability support or service, or in a specialist disability accommodation setting.

Your employer is responsible for assessing whether or not your role is a risk assessed role.

If you work for a registered NDIS provider but are not engaged in a risk assessed role, it is not mandatory to have an NDIS Worker Screening Check, but your employer can still require you to get one.

If you work for a self-managed participant or unregistered provider

If you are working for a self-managed participant or an unregistered provider, it is not mandatory for you to obtain a clearance through an NDIS Worker Screening Check. However, self-managed participants and unregistered providers can request workers who are providing supports and services to demonstrate they have a clearance, or request the worker to obtain a clearance by undergoing an NDIS Worker Screening Check.

Exceptions

Secondary school students on a formal work experience placement with a registered NDIS provider do not need an NDIS Worker Screening Check or to have an acceptable check to be engaged in a risk assessed role. This is provided they are directly supervised by another worker who has an NDIS Worker Screening Check clearance, or who has an acceptable check.

Working before you have an NDIS worker screening clearance

Depending on the laws in each state or territory, a worker may begin working in a risk assessed role once they have submitted an application for an NDIS Worker Screening Check, but before they have been granted a clearance. In these circumstances, registered NDIS providers must ensure that the worker is appropriately supervised by a person with an NDIS worker screening clearance and is implementing a risk management plan.

Registered NDIS providers must develop and maintain a satisfactory written risk management plan for protecting people with disability while a worker or any other personnel is in the process of obtaining a clearance.

Further, registered NDIS providers should check the requirements in each state and territory in which they deliver NDIS supports and services, as some states and territories do not permit a worker to commence employment until they hold a clearance.

Working before you have an acceptable check under transitional or special arrangements

Depending on the laws in each state or territory, a worker may begin working in a risk assessed role once they have submitted an application for an acceptable check(s) under transitional or special arrangements. Visit our transitional and special arrangements webpage for more information about the arrangements for each state and territory.

I work for a registered NDIS provider in more than one state or territory. Do I only need one acceptable check?

Until the NDIS Worker Screening check commences, a registered NDIS provider needs to ensure that you have an acceptable check in each state or territory where you are engaged in a risk assessed role to provide NDIS supports and services.

Example 1: You are engaged by a registered NDIS provider in a risk assessed role and provide NDIS supports and services in NSW for 2 days per week and in ACT for three days per week. The registered NDIS provider that has engaged you needs to ensure that you have an acceptable check that meets the requirements in NSW, and an acceptable check that meets the requirements in ACT.

Example 2: You are working in a risk assessed role in South Australia for a registered NDIS provider that provides supports and services to people with disability in South Australia and Tasmania. You have an acceptable check in South Australia. You accept an offer from your employer to take up a different role which will require you to move to Tasmania and is also a risk assessed role. Before you commence your new role in Tasmania, your employer will need to ensure that you have an acceptable check that meets the requirements in Tasmania.