From 9 November 2020, the Government is making changes to NZ Super and Veteran’s Pension.
The changes aim to simplify superannuation in New Zealand and is a move towards treating people more as individuals. This means people’s payments would depend more on their own situation, instead of their partner’s.
Closing the option to include a non-qualifying partner
Currently, some people getting NZ Super or Veteran’s Pension can include their partner who doesn’t qualify because of their circumstances. Any income either person earns can affect their payment.
From 9 November 2020, people won’t be able to include a non-qualifying partner in their payment. Instead, their partner would be able to apply for other kinds of assistance.
If your partner needs financial support, please encourage them to contact MSD on 0800 552 002.
No change for partners already included
If your partner is already included in your NZ Super or Veteran’s Pension payment on 9 November, they’ll continue to be included in your payment unless your circumstances change. For example, your income goes above the cut-off point and you decide to remove them from your payment.
If this happens, MSD will talk with both of you about your options and how they may be able to help.
Overseas pension deductions
Currently, if your partner gets an overseas pension, this can affect your NZ Super or Veteran’s Pension payment, depending on the amount of their overseas pension.
From 9 November 2020, MSD will no longer make deductions from your NZ Super or Veteran’s Pension because of your partner’s overseas pension. This would help recognise you as an individual with your own entitlement to superannuation.
There are also other changes to help simplify superannuation payments. These are changing the residency criteria for charitable workers who have spent time working overseas and expanding the living-alone rate of payment to include mobile homes located outside of caravan parks.
MSD will write to people affected by these changes. There’s also more information on the Work and Income website. www.workandincome.govt.nz