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Financial intermediary services

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The TAC can pay the reasonable and necessary costs of Financial Intermediary Services for eligible clients that have entered into an Individual Funding Agreement with the TAC. Financial Intermediary Services are designed to support clients pay invoices for services received for their transport accident injuries from their Individualised Funding (IF) bank account. Financial Intermediary Services are provided by a Financial Intermediary (FI).

The FI must use a client centred approach and promote self-determination for clients at all times. The FI may only act on a client’s instructions and in accordance with the Terms Sheet. FI’s should not provide financial advice to a client.

The TAC may periodically review a client’s entitlement to Financial Intermediary Services and transactions made from the IF bank account to ensure the services received by clients are reasonable and necessary and are payable under the Transport Accident Act 1986.

BACKGROUND

Individualised Funding has been developed by the TAC to promote client choice and control over the disability and allied health services provided to clients for the management of their accident related needs. Individualised Funding gives clients the flexibility to arrange their own support services in a way that best meets their needs and lifestyle, and empowers them to work directly with their service providers.

While Individualised Funding can provide clients with the opportunity to flexibly self-manage their own support services, it comes with extra responsibilities. The TAC has employees with specialised Individualised Funding  knowledge who are available to assist clients and their families with making the move to Individualised Funding.

Some clients may require additional assistance to use online banking and to keep and manage records of their TAC funded services.   The TAC may approve Financial Intermediary Services for these clients. Financial Intermediary Services provided by a Financial Intermediary (FI) and the role of the FI varies depending on a client’s transport accident related support needs, abilities and circumstances.

Clients that may be eligible for Financial Intermediary Services:

  • have entered into an Individualised Funding Agreement (IFA) with the TAC or are willing and able to enter into an IFA with the TAC
  • have a decision making impairment or physical disability that would impact on their ability to manage their invoices and receipts, reconcile their IF bank account transactions and undertake electronic banking
  • have accepted the TAC’s individualised Funding Allocation offer
  • are over 18 years old, and
  • do not have a guardian or administrator.

The FI and their employer will be asked to sign a Terms Sheet which will allow the FI access to a client’s IF bank account to make transfers or electronic payments for purchasable services. The FI may only act on a client’s instructions and is subject to the same restrictions as the client under the IFA.

This policy must be read in conjunction with the Individualised Funding policy.

DEFINITIONS

In this policy:

  • Administrator – a person appointed to make legal and financial decisions on behalf of a person when they are unable to do so themselves. They are appointed under s46 of the Guardianship and Administration Act 1986 by the Guardianship List of the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT).
  • Guardian – a person appointed to make personal and life-style decisions on behalf of a person when they are unable to do so themselves. They are appointed under s22 of the Guardianship and Administration Act 1986 by the Guardianship List of the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT).
  • Financial Intermediary – where the TAC deems reasonable and necessary, a Financial Intermediary Service may be approved for the purpose of providing support to pay invoices electronically from the IF bank account. Financial Intermediary Services are provided by a Financial Intermediary (FI). The FI may only act on a client and TAC’s instructions and in accordance with the terms sheet for the provision of FI services.
  • Individualised Funding (IF) – means clients receive their funding on a monthly basis and accept responsibility for sourcing and engaging providers, arranging services in a way that best meets their needs and lifestyle, and paying for the services they receive. 
  • Individualised Funding Agreement (IFA) - is an agreement between a client and the TAC which enables the TAC to make payments to a client and for that client to use these payments to purchase TAC funded services.
  • Individualised Funding Allocation – refers to the amount ($) that is determined by the TAC to represent a reasonable estimate of the client’s likely costs or expenditure each month in relation to purchasable services.
  • Purchasable Services - means any services which are approved services as that term is defined under section 61A of the Transport Accident Act 1986 (Vic).
  • Self-Management - refers to clients who are independently managing the responsibility for completing all Individualised Funding obligations according to the terms of the Individual Funding Agreement. Obligations include managing the funds allocated to them by the TAC to meet their needs, making self-determined decisions and self-efficacy in managing and paying for the services they receive. 
  • Service Package - is the purchasable services the client chooses and is entitled to spend their Individualised Funding Budget on.
  • Terms Sheet - a short form agreement between the FI, their employer and the TAC setting out the terms for the FI to provide the Financial Intermediary Services. Refer to this sample term sheet for further information.

GUIDELINES

What can the TAC pay for in relation to Financial Intermediary Services?

The TAC can pay the reasonable costs of Financial Intermediary Services for clients that have entered into an Individual Funding Agreement with the TAC and the service is:

  • required as a result of a transport accident injury
  • reasonable and necessary in the circumstances
  • in accordance with the TAC’s policies
  • authorised by the TAC under the Transport Accident Act 1986.

The TAC will pay up to four hours per month of FI activities (plus reasonable travel) which includes a minimum of one face to face service per month.

The FI will provide clients with numeracy, literacy, internet banking support and capability building to assist clients, where possible, to self-manage their Individualised Funding banking responsibilities.

The TAC may ask the FI questions about any transaction from or to the IF bank account, about any services to which the transaction relates or about the IF bank account balance.

A review can occur for many reasons across a broad range of areas and there are many sources of information which may trigger a review. An FI provider or their employer may be contacted by telephone, letter or receive a visit from the TAC seeking information or documents. In most circumstances, the TAC will contact you before a visit, and will arrange a time that is convenient for you. The TAC may also contact other parties to obtain information, including service providers and the TAC client.

Who may provide Financial Intermediary Services?

Financial Intermediary Services may be provided by an Attendant Care or Community Access service provider authorised by the TAC.

Employees conducting the Financial Intermediary Services must, at a minimum, hold a Certificate 3 in Disability or a relevant Health or Disability qualification and must:

  • complete a Terms Sheet
  • complete Westpac banking documents including providing 100 points of identification for the TAC to set up their user profile and to access the individual clients IF bank account via Westpac corporate online
  • undertake face to face training of the Westpac corporate online services with the TAC and the client.

Financial Intermediary service providers and their employees must not at any time provide any services to the client directly for payment from the IF bank account to which the FI has access to.

The conditions in the Terms Sheet enable the TAC to ask the FI questions about any transaction from or to the corporate online account and can require documents, such as invoices or receipts for services, be produced.

What information does the TAC require to consider paying for Financial Intermediary Services?

To consider paying for Financial Intermediary Services, the TAC requires a client to complete a Life Area Needs Self-Assessment. Eligible clients will have an identified need for support to use online banking and to keep and manage records of the purchasable services they have received.

What fees are payable for Financial Intermediary Services?

Please refer to the Financial Intermediary Services for Individualised Funding Client’s fee schedule.

What won’t the TAC pay for?

The TAC will not pay for:

  • services for a person other than the client
  • services subcontracted to, or provided by an unauthorised provider
  • services provided where a Terms Sheet agreement has not been completed
  • fees associated with cancellation or non-attendance
  • services provided outside the Commonwealth of Australia
  • treatment or services provided more than two years prior to the request for funding except where the request for payment is made within three years of the transport accident.  Refer to the Time Limit to Apply for the Payment of Medical and Like Expenses policy.