Updated: Apr 10
How we work together to give you financial freedom to live your life and achieve your goals
Partnering with a Plan Manager can build your confidence and remove any stress you might have about the financial obligations of managing your NDIS plan.
But to make an informed decision about which plan management provider is right for you, you need real insight into how they operate.
At First2Care and Support Management Solutions, we want to make it easy for you. We believe in being approachable and transparent about our services, whether you choose to work with us or not.
So, we’ve put together answers to our most frequently asked questions about our NDIS financial plan management services.
In this article, we tell you about:
our NDIS and financial experience
the way we’ll partner and work with you
how we’ll help you track your budgets and expenses
our invoice and payment processes
NDIS Plan Management Step 1: Hiring a Plan Manager
Q. How much funding will I receive to pay my Plan Manager?
A. If you’ve been approved for Plan Management in your first plan, the NDIS will fully fund you. This covers a one-time set-up fee (for every plan) and twelve instalments of a monthly processing fee. Your plan management funding is provided in addition to your other supports, so you won’t pay any additional expenses.
Q. Will I be funded for plan management every year?
A. Yes, if you choose to continue using a Plan Manager, you can apply for funding every year. Make sure you request to have ‘Improved Life Choices’ included in your NDIS.
Q. When do I have to choose my Plan Manager?
A. At the end of your planning meeting, you’ll be asked to specify your preferred option for fund management. You’ll need to have thought about what you want beforehand. You can select a plan management provider at this meeting, or you can wait to make a decision when your plan gets approved.
Q. How much experience do First2Care and SMS Plan Managers have?
A. Support Management Solutions have been providing plan management services, using First2Care for over 3 years. Our team consists of bookkeepers, accountants and professional advisers, with over 30 years’ experience in the financial management industry.
Q. Is NDIS Plan Management your main business or do you deliver a range of services?
A. First2Care and Support Management Solutions are solely focused on plan management and developing our First2Care app. We believe in giving our clients the specialised advice and attention they deserve.
Working with Your Plan Manager
Q. Will I be able to speak directly with my Plan Manager when I need to?
A. Yes, your assigned Plan Manager is available to talk with you personally, 5 days a week, and on weekends by appointment – over the phone or face to face. And if they’re away or sick, one of our team members will be happy to help you.
Q. Can they meet my accessibility needs?
A. Our plan management team communicates with people with disability every day. We can adapt our approach to meet your disability needs, using a range of communication styles, services and aids.
Q. Will they talk me through my plan?
A. Your Plan Manager will work through your plan with you, helping you understand what the support categories mean and how to maximise your available funding. And we’ll answer any questions you have. At Support Management Solutions, there are no silly questions. Really.
Q. Can they guide me in making decisions about what I can and can’t claim?
A. Yes, your Plan Manager can provide you with independent advice relating to your financial situation. They can:
explore different budgeting options and scenarios
build on your self-management capabilities
If you need help to negotiate service agreements and connect with supports, you can speak to your Local Area Coordinator (LAC) or Support Coordinator.
Tracking your NDIS budgets and spending
Q. Will you look after my budget, or do I?
A. Your Plan Manager will oversee your budgets and make sure there are always funds available when you need them.
Q. Do you use a digital platform where I can check my claims, payments and service agreements?
A. Yes, we actually developed First2Care, our own NDIS plan management app, to help us deliver financial services in true partnership with our clients.
Q. How often will I receive budget reports?
A. We provide a monthly report of your expenditure and remaining funds. However, you can log into the First2Care app to check the status of your spending at any time.
Q. What are all the things I can check using the First2Care app?
A. The First2Care app gives you complete visibility over your budgets and expenses. Your Plan Manager will upload all your invoices, service agreements, and payee details, ready for you to view and approve.
Processing invoices and payments
Q. Who is in charge of paying invoices?
A. Life’s too short to spend paying bills. Your Plan Manager will pay your providers for you, so you don’t have to.
Q. Do I get to approve the invoices before they get paid?
A. Yes, even with a Plan Manager, you’re still the decision maker. Using the First2Care app, you can review and approve all invoices before payment. You can also use the app to compare invoices with your service provider timesheets, to make sure you’re being invoiced correctly.
Q. How quickly do you pay providers?
A. We pay services providers and reimburse claims every day. Our usual turnaround is to pay providers within five days of receiving money back from the NDIS.
Q. Can you reimburse me for any services I pay for directly?
A. Yes, your Plan Manager will reimburse you for any out-of-pocket purchases that are funded in your NDIS plan.
Q. What information will I need to provide to be reimbursed?
A. You’ll need to provide a receipt of your purchase, and your bank BSB and account number for the money to be paid into. You may also need to provide a description of the purchased item if it’s not clear on the receipt, or if you need to demonstrate how your purchase relates to your disability.
First2Care and Support Management Solutions can help you worry less about paying bills, so you can live your life
Support Management Solutions is an NDIS-registered plan management provider in Queensland, New South Wales, South Australia and Victoria. Our Brisbane-based team of experienced advisers work together with our dedicated NDIS plan management app to help people across the country. We help to reduce the financial and administrative burden on managing your NDIS plan, so you can focus on what’s important to you.
Our vision is to empower participants to build their skills and confidence to achieve their goals. If you’d like to learn more about how our NDIS financial plan management services can help you, please get in touch with one of our friendly team members.
Over to you ...
Is there anything more you’d like to know about Support Management Solutions and our NDIS plan management services?
We’d love to know in the comments below.