New Zealand Superannuation rates from 2020 APRIL 1: but yet to include the Government Covid-19 increase

NZ Superannuation and Veteran’s Pension

 

Pension type Net weekly rate
(after tax at “M”)
Net weekly rate
(after tax at “S”)
Gross weekly rate
NZ Superannuation or Veteran’s Pension — standard rates
Single
Single, living alone $423.83 $404.98 $490.73
Single, sharing $391.22 $372.37 $451.29
Couples
Both you and your partner qualify (combined) $652.04 $614.34 $744.54
Both you and your partner qualify (each) $326.02 $307.17 $372.27
Only one of you qualifies and you include your partner in your payments (combined) $619.76 $582.06 $705.26
Only one of you qualifies and you include your partner in your payments (each) $309.88 $291.03 $352.63
Only one of you qualifies and you don’t include your partner in your payments $326.02 $307.17 $372.27
NZ Superannuation or Veteran’s Pension — non-standard rates
Married couple, with non-qualified spouse included before 1 October 1991 (total) $652.04 $614.34 $744.54
Married couple, with non-qualified spouse included before 1 October 1991 (each) $326.02 $307.17 $372.27
Qualified partner in rest home with non-qualified partner in the community $282.14 $263.29 $319.11
Hospital rate $46.03 Note 1 $51.38
Non-taxable amounts
Other veterans lump sum payment on death $6,166.58
Veteran’s spouse’s lump sum payment on death $4,702.19

Understanding NZ Super

Eligibility

New Zealand residents are entitled to receive NZ Super (the old age pension) if they satisfy all of the following conditions. They must:

  • have reached State pension age (currently age 65);
  • be a New Zealand citizen or permanent resident;
  • live in New Zealand;
  • have lived in New Zealand for at least 10 years since age 20;
  • have lived in New Zealand for at least 5 years since age 50.

Residence in a country with which New Zealand has reciprocal social security arrangements (like Australia and the UK) counts as residence in New Zealand.

Level

The benefit is linked directly to the national average wage and is reviewed each year (1 April) against changes in wages. The target level for a married couple is referred to as “65 at 65” i.e. a net 65% of the net national average wage from age 65. The current level is 66% of the net national average wage.

Taxation

The pension is taxed as income in the normal way under the PAYE system.

Income test

There are no income or asset tests applied to NZ Super. However, if one partner of a couple qualifies and the other does not, both may receive the benefit, but an income test applies in respect of the benefit paid to the partner that does not qualify in their own right.

Application

The pension when payable is not backdated. Also, an application can only be made when you are within 12 weeks of being eligible. Therefore, an eligible person should apply (make an appointment) in the 12 weeks before turning 65.

Cost

There are no specific social security contributions or “working life period” based requirements. The full pension is payable if the “eligibility” conditions are satisfied. The pension is funded out of general taxation.

Private superannuation

The payment of the NZ Super benefit does not affect the private superannuation and savings of an individual. This includes benefits payable under KiwiSaver.

However, entitlements to an overseas social security pension (like the UK’s Basic State Pension) but not work-related, employer-provided pensions, reduce the New Zealand pension by the equivalent amount.

KASPANZ - be a wise owl!

12 thoughts on “New Zealand Superannuation rates from 2020 APRIL 1: but yet to include the Government Covid-19 increase”

    1. Hi Jennifer. Work and Income both website and phone line are set up to, answer specific questions relating to your circumstances.

  1. For Super where one partner is included as a non qualified partner you state -“an income test applies in respect of the benefit paid to the partner that does not qualify in their own right.” Is this correct? My understanding has been that neither party can earn in excess of $5200 before a reduction is applied to both recipient’s payments?
    Thanking you.

    1. Phil, specific questions like this for accuracy sake, need to be directed to Work and Income. Both their web site and phone lines are established to facilitate such queries.

      1. But your site is providing inaccurate information of a generic nature…. If you are providing advice it needs to be accurate.

        1. Hi Phil

          We are an information site, not advice. We often cut and paste from the key websites, and do try to be accurate and up to date to assist knowledge, but the fine points and specific, the source is always the best place to go

          Work and Income site today as below.

          From 9 November 2020, if you get NZ Super or Veteran’s Pension and have a partner who doesn’t qualify, you won’t be able to include them in your payments. Instead, your partner will be able to apply for other kinds of assistance.

          If your partner is already included in your payments
          If your partner is included in your NZ Super or Veteran’s Pension payment before 9 November, this change won’t affect you. You’ll both continue getting your payments unless your circumstances change, for example:

          your income goes above the cut-off point, or
          you decide to remove your partner from your payment.
          We’ll write to you over the next few months to explain how this works for you.

          If you remove your partner from your payments
          If you decide to remove your partner, you won’t be able to include them in your payments again from 9 November 2020.

          If this happens, we’ll talk with both of you about your options and how we may be able to help.

          If you’d like to include your partner in your payment
          You can still apply to include your partner in your payment until 8 November 2020. Any income you or your partner earn could affect the amount you get. Find out about the income limits for couples with a partner included.

          If you’d like to do this, you can contact Seniors Services on 0800 552 002.

  2. My husband and I are going to be on pension. And I would like to carry on working part time. How much can I earn each week without it affecting my benefit?

    1. Jennifer. Specific questions like this are the bread and butter of Work and Income. Their website and their phone line are set up to facilitate answer to this question, rather than a 3rd party guessing the specifics of your personal situation

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