NDIS Bill passes the House with new amendments

But it’s not law yet. Next step: the Senate.

By Sara Gingold and Todd Winther

Updated 5 Jun 20246 Jun 20243 min read

The proposed new NDIS Bill today passed the House of Representatives. But it’s not law yet. It still has to go to the Senate, where it is likely to face fierce opposition from the crossbench. Greens Senator Jordon Steele-John has already said his party will not support the Bill.

The Bill passing the House, where the government has a majority, isn’t a huge surprise. In fact, it would be shocking if it didn’t. But it is an important step in the process. And we all have to wait with baited breath to see what happens next. 

Overnight, the government proposed a second suite of amendments to the Bill. Including:

  • Removing a transitional measure in the original Bill, that stated that until legislative Rules were developed with the States & Territories, the Applied Principles and Tables of Support (APTOS) would be used to determine what could be funded by the NDIS. This measure faced significant criticism, as APTOS was not designed to be a comprehensive list of what supports the NDIS would fund.
  • Limiting the NDIA’s power to request information for reassessing a person’s eligibility to scenarios where is no other way to get that information. The explanatory memorandum says that this change was made for privacy reasons, so that people only have to do assessments when necessary.
  • People were critical of the original Bill for failing to state when the NDIA can order a replacement needs assessment. The amendments say these conditions ‘may’ be defined in the future Rules. Doesn’t that just fill you with confidence?
  • Clarifying the conditions under which the NDIA can make payments. This relates to the government’s attempts to stop the NDIA giving people more funding where funding has run out, or is about to run out, before the plan period ends. This new amendment means a person can seek more funding before a plan period ends in these conditions:
    • if the participant has been a victim of fraud; or
    • there is a significant risk to their life, health or safety; or
    • the person hasn’t been able to request a variation or reassessment of their plan due to an impairment or a lack of decision making support; or
    • there’s an emergency; or
    • or something else spelled out in to-be-designed Rules.

There is the possibility of further amendments, as the government negotiates with the Senate.

Check out our past coverage of the NDIS Bill:

What happens next?

Both houses of Federal Parliament, the House of Representatives and the Senate, require the Bill to be read three times before a Bill can become Law.

The first reading of the NDIS Bill in the House was when the Minister Shorten introduced it in March. The second reading of the Bill occurred last week, where all members of the House of Representatives had the opportunity to speak about what they think the Bill is trying to achieve and suggest any amendments. The Bill’s final reading occurred today, and members voted on the Bill.

The next step is introducing the Bill into the Senate, which goes through the same process. The Government does not have a majority in the Senate. So it must either negotiate with the minor parties that hold the balance of power or work with the Liberal National Party Coalition to pass the bill.

Stay tuned for more updates…

This is not legal advice, and should not be relied upon as such.


Sara Gingold
Todd Winther

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