After you’ve completed the 3-step application process, your application will be assessed. This involves obtaining and reviewing any relevant records, including (if applicable):
- national criminal records
- workplace misconduct records held by the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission
- the outcome of any previous NDIS worker screening application within Australia.
If you do not have any records, once this has been confirmed, you should receive a clearance quickly.
If you have a conviction for a disqualifying offence, and you were 18 years or older at the time of the offence, you'll be issued an exclusion.
If you have any other criminal, workplace misconduct or other records, you may be subject to a risk assessment.
If there are records of concern in your history, an interim bar may be applied. This prevents you from working in roles that require a clearance while your application is being assessed.
You and your employer will be notified when:
- an interim bar is applied
- a final decision (clearance or exclusion) is made about your application.
Note: Your employer should not ask you for a copy of your clearance. They must check the status of your NDIS Worker Check via the NDIS Worker Screening Database portal.
If they have any questions about how to do this, they need to contact the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission.
Criminal and workplace misconduct records
Your full criminal history is reviewed. This includes:
- charges whether or not heard, proven, dismissed, withdrawn or discharged
- convictions, including those that have been quashed, set aside, or pardoned
- spent convictions
- juvenile criminal records.
Workplace misconduct records held by the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission are also reviewed. This includes workplace investigations into misconduct such as assault, fraud, sexual misconduct, abuse and neglect.
Certain criminal offences are deemed to be 'disqualifying offences'.
If you've been convicted of a disqualifying offence and you were 18 years or older at the time of the offence, you'll be issued an exclusion.
Disqualifying offences include:
- murder, attempted murder or genocide
- child abuse material (sexual or physical), child pornography, child prostitution offences
- sexual assault offences committed against a child or vulnerable adult. This includes assault with sexual intent, and sexual offences resulting in physical harm
- other sexual offences committed against a child under the age of 14 years, a child who is more than 5 years younger than the offender, or a vulnerable adult. This includes sexual touching, carnal knowledge, indecent acts, indecent assault, inciting sexual acts and sexual intercourse with a person under the age of consent
- offences involving intentional harmful conduct resulting in the death of, or serious physical harm to, a child or vulnerable adult. This includes poisoning, arson, detonation of explosives, contamination of goods, discharge of firearms, organ trafficking, people smuggling and female genital mutilation
- serious violence offences (such as torture, strangulation and choking) committed against a child or vulnerable adult
- kidnapping offences committed against a child or vulnerable adult who is not a familial relative of the offender
Presumptively disqualifying offences
Certain criminal offences are deemed to be 'presumptively disqualifying offences'. This means someone who committed such an offence is presumed to pose a risk of harm to people with disability.
If you have a conviction for a presumptively disqualifying offence, and you were 18 years or older at the time of the offence, you'll be subject to a risk assessment.
If you have a pending criminal proceeding (you've been charged but the matter has not been finalised) for a disqualifying offence or a presumptively disqualifying offence, and you were 18 years or older at the time of the offence, you'll be subject to a risk assessment.
Presumptively disqualifying offences include:
- national security offences including war crimes, crimes against humanity and treason
- sexual assault offences committed against a non-vulnerable adult. This includes assault with sexual intent and sexual offences resulting in physical harm
- other sexual offences committed against a child over the age of 14 years who is less than 5 years younger than the offender. This includes sexual touching, carnal knowledge, indecent acts, indecent assault, inciting sexual acts and sexual intercourse with a person under the age of consent
- offences involving intimate images, filming or observation of a child or vulnerable adult
- wilful and obscene exposure offences committed against a child or vulnerable adult
- offences involving intentional harmful conduct resulting in the death of, or serious physical harm to, a non-vulnerable adult. This includes poisoning, arson, detonation of explosives, contamination of goods, discharge of firearms, organ trafficking, people smuggling and female genital mutilation
- serious violence offences (such as torture, strangulation and choking) committed against a non-vulnerable adult
- kidnapping offences committed against a child or vulnerable adult who is a familial relative of the offender, or a non-vulnerable adult
- drug offences involving either a commercial quantity of illicit substances, children, or vulnerable adults
- animal cruelty offences involving intentional or reckless infliction of harm, injury, wounding or suffering
- fraud and deception offences committed against a child or vulnerable adult
- neglect offences committed against a person who is under the care of the offender.
Other criminal offences and other records
All other history information will be reviewed, and if appropriate, referred for risk assessment. This can result in a clearance or an exclusion. This includes:
- disqualifying offences and presumptively disqualifying offences that were committed as a juvenile (under 18 years)
- any other criminal offences (that are not disqualifying or presumptively disqualifying offences)
- convictions that have been quashed or set aside or for which a pardon has been granted
- workplace misconduct records (from the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission)
- any other information relevant to assessing risk of harm to people with disability.
A risk assessment is an assessment of a person’s records to determine whether they pose a risk of harm to people with disability. Harm is any detrimental impact to the health, safety and wellbeing of people with disability. It includes physical, sexual, emotional, psychological or financial harm.
A risk assessment looks at your criminal records, workplace misconduct records, and any other relevant information. It considers individual matters, patterns of behaviour and your history in total.
It takes into account:
- the nature, seriousness and circumstances of any offences or incidents
- the length of time that has passed since the offences or incidents
- any victims and your relationship to them
- your conduct since any offences or incidents.
A risk assessment can be undertaken on your application or after you have been issued with a clearance. It can be as a result of a new criminal or workplace record, or if other relevant information is identified.
The screening agency will usually request information from you as part of the risk assessment process.
It will usually involve gathering information from other sources such as police, courts, government agencies or employers. This can take some time. The assessment process is reliant on the other parties providing the information for it to be completed.
Following the risk assessment, a decision will be made about your application or your ongoing suitability for a clearance. That is, to issue either a clearance or an exclusion.
If an exclusion is being considered, you’ll be sent a ‘Proposed Exclusion Notice’. A Proposed Exclusion Notice is to advise you of the intention to issue an exclusion - it is not yet a final decision. You have the opportunity to provide further information to support your application. That information will be taken into consideration before a final decision is made.
The final decision may be an exclusion or a clearance.
Request for information
You may be asked to provide information or you may decide to provide information, to support your application or your ongoing suitability for a clearance.
If this is the case you'll be given:
- reasons for the request
- details of what information is required
- details on how to provide the information.
If you're asked to provide specific information and you fail to do so within the specified time (minimum 28 days), without a reasonable excuse, your application or clearance may be cancelled.
Interim bar and suspension
While a risk assessment is being conducted an interim bar may be applied if you're an applicant. If you already hold a clearance, your clearance may be suspended.
An interim bar or suspension is a temporary measure and means you cannot work in a role requiring a clearance until the risk assessment has been completed and a decision made.
Providing further information
You may need or want to provide information to support your NDISWC application. You'll be advised if this is the case.
The PDF forms below can be used to help you provide information to support your application.
- Information statement: to provide information about your account of any incidents from your past.
- Professional reference: to provide a statement from a practitioner about treatment or engagement in support services/programs.
- Employer reference: to provide a statement from your manager or direct supervisor.
- Character reference: to provide a personal reference about your character from someone you know.
After your application is assessed, there are 2 possible outcomes:
You'll be advised by email of the outcome of your application. Your employer will also be notified, and it will be recorded on the NDIS Worker Screening Database.
A clearance is valid for 5 years and enables you to work in NDIS roles that require a clearance. A clearance can be used across Australia, and with any NDIS provider. You'll be reminded 3 months before it expires to reapply.
Clearance holders will be continuously monitored for 5 years by state and territory police agencies for new criminal offences, and the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission for workplace misconduct.
Any new records or other relevant information during this time may lead to a reassessment of a clearance.
You will be issued an exclusion if:
- it is determined that you pose a risk of harm to people with disability following a risk assessment, or
- you have a conviction for a disqualifying offence and were 18 years or older at the time of the offence.
An exclusion means you're unable to work in the NDIS in roles that require a clearance. You are not permitted to reapply for 5 years.
If you have been issued an exclusion due to a disqualifying offence, you are not permitted to reapply, even after 5 years.
Requesting a review
The following decisions can be reviewed:
- a decision to issue an exclusion
- a decision to issue an interim bar or suspension, after it has been in place for at least 6 months
- a decision to cancel an application or clearance.
The following decisions cannot be reviewed:
- a decision to issue an exclusion because of a disqualifying offence
- a decision to issue an exclusion because of a presumptively disqualifying offence where there are pending criminal proceedings (such as charges or an unresolved court hearing).
- a decision to cancel an application or clearance if the person fails to provide requested information without having a reasonable excuse
- a decision to issue an interim bar or suspension if it has been in place for less than 6 months
- a decision to cancel an application because it is invalid.
If you wish to have your decision reviewed you can apply for an internal review. This is a review by the NDISWC screening agency of its original decision. The internal review will be conducted by someone independent of the original decision.
You must lodge an application for an internal review:
- within 28 days of the original decision, or
- more than 6 months after the decision to impose an interim bar or suspension was made.
You request an internal review via your MyServiceNSW account.
There is a $20 fee for an internal review.
If you're not satisfied with the outcome of the internal review you can apply to the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal (NCAT) for an external review.
To find out more about lodging an application for an external review, visit NCAT.
Early application (exclusion holders)
If you currently have an NDISWC exclusion (that has not expired), you can make an ‘early application’ if there has been a relevant change of circumstances, and those circumstances were the basis for the original exclusion decision.
A relevant change of circumstance could include:
- the criminal proceedings against you (such as a criminal charge) have been withdrawn or completed without a conviction
- a finding of guilt for a criminal offence (a court conviction) has been quashed or set aside
- any other change that means the basis for the finding of risk in the original exclusion decision has ceased to have effect.
You'll know if a criminal or other record was the basis for the exclusion decision. This will have been outlined in the exclusion notification sent to you.
To make an early application when there has been a relevant change of circumstances, you reapply online through your MyServiceNSW Account.
It does not mean you will necessarily receive a clearance. A risk assessment will likely be undertaken. You may still receive an exclusion.
Before you make an early application, email the NDISWC screening agency at firstname.lastname@example.org to confirm your eligibility.
Incorrect criminal, workplace or other records
If you believe that your records are incorrect, or a decision has been made based on incorrect information, email the NDISWC screening agency at email@example.com.
If the information about you is incorrect, once your record(s) have been corrected with the originating agency, the decision can be reassessed.
You'll be provided with more information about how this can be done and what is required at the time, if this applies to you.