Mythbusters - Myth 6
Eligibility for SDA occupancy is determined by using the SDA Rules (2020) which is a part of legislation. The NDIA also considers their own operational guidelines when making a decision about whether someone can live alone.
The part of the SDA Rules that talks about occupancy is Rule 16. Eligibility includes:
When considering whether someone is eligible to live alone, the NDIA also look at their Operational Guidelines, which say that:
Kate is 50 years old and has lived in her family home for 20 years with her husband Curren. Kate has a diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis (MS). Kate uses a power wheelchair to mobilise and transfers in and out of her wheelchair with the support of a ceiling hoist and another person.
Over the years, as Kate’s MS has progressed and she has been unable to access the kitchen and shower in her home for the last year. Kate wants to live alone so that her husband, children, and friends can visit as often and for as long as they like.
Kate is likely to meet the eligibility requirements for single occupancy as the support model of a single occupancy apartment would meet Kate’s support needs, and she is looking forward to being able to cook some meals for herself in an accessible kitchen. She is able to use an alert system, and can usually wait for ad hoc support. Kate also meets the eligibility requirements for single occupancy as living alone would increase her social participation and facilitate her established connections with her friends and family.
Jim is 65 years old and has lived alone in a privately rented home for the past 8 years. Jim experienced a stroke in the past year and has been in hospital since then. Jim is unable to mobilise by himself and someone must propel his manual wheelchair. Jim transfers in and out of his wheelchair with the support of another person.
Jim is medically ready for discharge, but is unable to return to his previous home as it is not wheelchair accessible and his tenancy agreement has ended. Jim requires 1:1 support at all times and his neurologist has advised that his independent living skills will not improve. The impacts of Jim’s stroke means that he cannot communicate and is unable to tell anyone where he wants to live. His son, Raphael, is his legal decision maker and wants Jim to live alone in an apartment.
Jim is not likely to meet the eligibility requirements for single occupancy as he is unable to tell the NDIA whether he wants to live alone, he cannot use technology to call for assistance, and he does not have ad hoc support needs.
Contact our NDIS Housing Advice Line on 1300 61 64 63 from Monday-Friday, 10am-3pm (AEDT).