Please visit our dedicated COVID-19 page for all information and helpful links regarding the Coronavirus crisis.
Ministry of Social Development Services During COVID-19 Level 4 Lockdown:
As a resultof the COVID-19 Level 4 Lockdown the following information and announcements have been made:
- All benefits will continue to be paid automatically for 6 months
- Sickness/Invalid Benefit – a medical consult is not required
2. Hardship Support
- Whānau struggling during the COVID -19 Lockdown can apply for a Hardship Support Grant. Apply online: https://www.msd.govt.nz
3. Loss of Job
If you have lost your job, can’t work at the moment or your income has been reduced, you may be able to get a benefit or some other financial help from Work and Income.
You may be able to get help with urgent expenses like:
- accommodation costs (rent, mortgage, board)
- power, gas and water bills or heating
- medical and dental costs
You can find more information about financial support (including criteria) by contacting Work and Income online at https://workandincome.govt.nz/eligibility/index.html
4. COVID-19 Wage Subsidy for Employers
Who may apply for the Wage Subsidy:
- Sole traders / Self Employed
- Registered charities
- the self-employed and sole traders
- registered charities
- incorporated societies, and
- post-settlement governance entities.
As at 27 March 2020, the Government has made modifications to the wage subsidy scheme to ensure people don’t lose their jobs during the national lockdown.
- Businesses must be registered and operating in New Zealand
- Employees are legally working in New Zealand
- The business has experienced a minimum 30% decline in actual or predicted revenue over the period of a month, when compared with the same month last year, and that decline is related to COVID-19.
- There are special rules for new businesses and high-growth firms
- Businesses accessing the scheme must still undertake best endeavors to pay employees 80% of their pre-COVID income.
- Where that is not possible – in particular where a business has no activity whatsoever due to the shutdown and workers are not working any hours – they must pass on at least the whole value of the wage subsidy to each affected worker.
- Businesses must undertake to keep employees in employment for the period of the subsidy.
- Government is incorporating the previous sick leave scheme into this scheme to prevent double-dipping.
The COVID-19 Wage Subsidy will be a 12 week bulk payment at the following flat rate of:
- $585.80 per employee working 20 hours or more per week
- $350.00 per employee working less than 20 hours per week.
For further information on the Wage Subsidy Scheme go to: https://services.workandincome.govt.nz/ess/employer_applications/new
Online applications: https://workandincome.govt.nz/online-services/apply/index.html
Telephone: Under 65 years of age 0800 5599 009
65 years + 0800 5520 02
NB : Depending on volume there could be a significant wait before being connected via telephone