Working for Families payments
Get help with the costs of raising children. Your payments are worked out based on the information you give Inland Revenue about your income for the year.
Who can get it
You need to be:
- caring for at least one child under 18 who’s financially dependent on you
- over 16
- a New Zealand tax resident living in NZ, or the children in your care are NZ residents who live in NZ.
How much you can get
The type of payment and the amount you’ll get depends on:
- how many dependant children you have (kids under 18 you’re financially responsible for)
- your total family income (including interest, dividends and income from your kids)
- the number of hours you and your partner work each week
- the type of income you earn (wages, self-employed, on a benefit).
The calculator only provides an estimate and it can’t work out the payment for some family situations. You may need to call IR on 0800 227 773.
Getting paid your tax credit
Your payments are worked out based on the information you give IR about your income for the year.
You can choose to be paid:
- as a lump sum for the whole year — paid after the end of the tax year.
You can change this throughout the year if you want to.
Choosing when to get paid
You can estimate your income for the year and get weekly or fortnightly payments if:
- your income is the same all the time, and
- you don’t expect anything to change during the year (you’re not planning to have another baby, change jobs or have a child move out of home).
Choose a lump sum payment if:
- your income changes frequently
- you’d find it hard to predict your income for the whole year, or
- you’re expecting a change in circumstances (a new baby, a child moving out, job changes or extra money coming in).
What to do if something changes
If something changes, either in your family or with your income, your entitlement might also change — you need to tell IR as soon as possible.
If you underestimate your income
If you choose weekly or fortnightly payments and you underestimate your income, you’ll be overpaid and have to pay the extra money back after you’ve had your tax assessment for the year.
If you talk to IR, they may be able to work out a payment plan for you.
You’ll be charged penalties and interest on any late repayments.
If you earn less than you thought you would
If you’ve earned less than your estimate at the end of the year, you might receive an extra payment of to square things up.
You’ll be paid this as a single payment after you’ve had your tax assessment for the year.
If your application is delayed and you missed payments
You might also be paid extra if your application took so long to process that you missed some payments.
At the end of the tax year
The tax year ends on 31 March each year. IR will send you an income tax assessment or a reminder to file an individual tax return (IR3) depending on your circumstances.
You’ll need to confirm:
- how much you earned, and
- your family details.
IR will then work out if your payments are right.