Making changes to KiwiSaver
You can change how much you contribute or which scheme you belong to. Once you've belonged to KiwiSaver for 12 months, you can choose to take a contributions holiday.
Changing your contributions
You can contribute 3%, 4% or 8% of your before-tax pay. The default rate is 3%.
You can change your contribution rate once every 3 months — unless your employer agrees to a shorter timeframe — by giving your employer:
- a letter stating your new rate (3%, 4% or 8%), or
- a KiwiSaver deduction form (KS2).
If you're not an employee — for example you're self-employed, receiving a benefit or not working — you can contribute whatever you like voluntarily. Your provider may have a minimum annual amount or specific payment periods that you need to follow.
Taking a break from making contributions
Once you've been a member for 12 months, you can choose to take a break — often called a contributions holiday. Your holiday can last from 3 months to 5 years. There's no limit to the number of times you can take a contributions holiday and you can restart your savings at any time.
You can still make voluntary contributions and receive the Member Tax Credit while you're on a contributions holiday.
Taking a break before you've belonged for 12 months
If you've been with KiwiSaver for less than 12 months, you can apply to take an early contributions holiday. You'll have to show evidence of financial hardship that's outside your control, such as needing to pay for medical treatment for a sick family member.
- IRD if you've been in KiwiSaver for 3 months or less
- your provider if you've been in KiwiSaver for longer than 3 months.
Unpaid leave and parental leave
If you're an employee, your contributions stop while you're taking:
- unpaid leave
- paid parental leave, as long as you're not receiving any extra payment from your employer.
If you're on leave but still getting paid, contributions continue to come out of your pay.
You can change your scheme, but you can only belong to one scheme at a time.
To change scheme, apply to the provider you want to join. They'll arrange for your savings to be transferred from your old scheme to the new one. There might be a transfer fee.
You'll have to change to a new scheme if:
- you change jobs and your old employer had their own KiwiSaver scheme, or
- your scheme closes down.
You can either:
- apply to a new scheme of your choice, or
- be allocated automatically to one of the 9 default schemes.