COVID-19: Financial support for businesses

A summary of the financial support available to help you, your business and employees through the response to COVID-19.

Changes under the COVID-19 Protection Framework

COVID-19 financial support for businesses is changing as New Zealand transitions into the COVID-19 Protection Framework (traffic light system).

No new rounds of the Wage Subsidy Scheme or Resurgence Support Payment will be opened under the new Framework.

The Short-Term Absence Payment, Leave Support Scheme and Small Business Cash Flow Loan Scheme will continue to be available.

Transition payment

A one-off transition payment will be available for eligible businesses as New Zealand moves into the new Framework.

The payment is particularly in recognition of the length of time Auckland, Waikato and Northland businesses spent under higher Alert Levels.

When

Applications open on 10 December 2021.

If your business had reduced income between 3 October and 9 November, you may be eligible for the payment.

How much

  • $4,000 per business plus $400 per full time employee (FTE) up to a cap of 50 FTEs.

How to apply

You can apply through the Resurgence Support Payment system in myIR. The eligibility criteria is the same as for Resurgence Support Payments.

Eligibility for the Resurgence Support Payment(external link) — Inland Revenue

Apply for the Resurgence Support Payment(external link) — Inland Revenue

Resurgence Support Payment

The Resurgence Support Payment (RSP) is a payment to help support viable and ongoing businesses or organisations due to a COVID-19 alert level increase to level 2 or higher. If your business or organisation is facing a reduction in revenue of at least 30% due to an alert level increase, you may be eligible for the RSP.

This payment is not a loan, so does not need to be repaid. The payment must be used to help cover business expenses such as wages and fixed costs.

Applications for three rounds of the RSP are open. Businesses and organisations can apply for each round of the RSP if they are eligible.

When

Revenue decline periods

The revenue decline periods for each payment are:

  • 4th payment: starting 22 October 2021, ending the close of 2 December 2021
  • 5th payment: starting 5 November 2021, ending the close of 2 December 2021
  • 6th payment: starting 19 November 2021, ending the close of 2 December 2021.

Applications

Applications close the first working day six weeks after the end of the affected revenue period.

How much

4th payment: $1,500 per eligible business, plus $400 per full-time equivalent (FTE) employee, up to a maximum of 50 FTE.

5th and 6th payments: $3,000 per eligible business, plus $800 per FTE, up to a maximum of 50 FTE.

How to apply

You can apply and check if you’re eligible to apply on Inland Revenue’s website.

Apply for the Resurgence Support Payment(external link) — Inland Revenue

Eligibility for the Resurgence Support Payment(external link) — Inland Revenue

If you don’t meet the criteria for RSP but do have cash flow problems, Inland Revenue can help. Visit their Manage my tax page for more information.

Manage my tax(external link) — Inland Revenue

Having an NZBN could make applying for financial support easier

Having an NZBN could make applying for financial support easier

A New Zealand Business Number (NZBN) is a globally unique identifier for each New Zealand business.

If you’re a registered company, you’ll already have one. If you’re self-employed, a sole-trader, a partnership or a trust, you can apply on the NZBN website.

See if you already have an NZBN or apply for one on the NZBN website(external link) — NZBN

Wage Subsidy Scheme

The Wage Subsidy is a payment to support eligible businesses, organisations and the self-employed affected by Alert Levels 3 and 4, so they can continue to pay employees and protect jobs.

You can apply for the Wage Subsidy regardless of where your business is located in New Zealand. However, your business must have been affected by the continuation of Alert Level 3 or 4.

The Wage Subsidy is paid in two-week periods.

When

Wage Subsidy August 2021 #8 is the only round of the Wage Subsidy Scheme that remains open for applications. You have until 11:59pm on 9 December 2021 to apply.

How much

  • $600 per week per full-time employee
  • $359 per week per part-time employee.

How to apply

You can apply on the Work and Income website.

Information on the Wage Subsidy Scheme (external link) — Work and Income

If you applied for Wage Subsidy August 2021 #7 and were eligible, Work and Income will email you to let you know when to apply for Wage Subsidy #8. Don’t send in early applications, they won’t be accepted as each payment is for a two-week period. If you didn’t apply for the earlier rounds of the Wage Subsidy you can apply for Wage Subsidy #8 if you meet eligibility criteria.

Short-Term Absence Payment

The Short-Term Absence Payment will continue to be available under the COVID-19 Protection Framework.

The payment is so you can pay workers who follow public health guidance and stay home while waiting for a COVID-19 test result.  It’s also available to eligible self-employed workers. To be eligible, workers need to be unable to work from home and need to miss work while waiting for the test results.

How much

There’s a one-off payment of $359 payment for each eligible worker. Employers or the self-employed can apply for any worker once in any 30-day period, unless a health official or doctor tells the worker to get another test.

How to apply

You can apply on the Work and Income website.

More information and how to apply(external link) — Work and Income

Leave Support Scheme

The COVID-19 Leave Support Scheme will continue to be available under the COVID-19 Protection Framework.  It’s available to employers, including the self-employed, who need to self-isolate and can’t work from home.

How much

  • $600 per week for full-time workers and $359 per week for part-time workers.

How to apply

You can apply on the Work and Income website.

How to apply for the Leave Support Scheme(external link) — Work and Income

Leave Support Scheme(external link) — Work and Income

Small Business Cash Flow Loan Scheme (SBCS)

The Small Business Cash Flow Loan Scheme will continue to be available under the COVID-19 Protection Framework.

Under the scheme, Government provides loans to small businesses, including sole traders and the self-employed, impacted by COVID-19 to support their cash flow needs.

If you've previously applied for a SBCS and have fully repaid it, you can apply again.

Applications are open until 31 December 2023. You can apply through myIR.

The small business cash flow loan scheme will provide assistance of up to a maximum of $100,000 to businesses employing 50 or fewer full-time employees. This includes sole traders and self-employed businesses.

Details of the loans include:

  • $10,000 to be provided to eligible businesses
  • an additional $1800 per equivalent full-time employee
  • interest free if the loan is paid back within two years
  • an interest rate of 3% for a maximum term of five years
  • repayments not required for the first two years
  • you must show at least a 30% drop in revenue due to Covid-19, measured over a 14-day period in the past six months compared with the same 14-day period a year ago. If your revenue from the same period a year ago was also affected by COVID-19, compare the same 14-day period two years ago.
  • maximum amount you can borrow depends on the number of full-time and part-time employees.

Use the small business cash flow loan scheme eligibility tool and find out how to apply.

COVID-19: Small business cash flow loan scheme eligibility tool

myIR(external link) — Inland Revenue

If your businesses doesn’t have a myIR account, you will need to create one to apply.

Register a myIR account for a business or organisation(external link) — Inland Revenue

Most applicants will receive their loan payment in full from Inland Revenue within five working days. You don’t have to accept the full loan amount you’re offered, and can decide to take a smaller loan.

Tax and ACC support

If you’re having difficulties meeting your tax obligations due to COVID-19, Inland Revenue has various support schemes and options to help.

COVID-19 business and organisations(external link) — Inland Revenue

During the COVID-19 outbreak, you’ll find ACC updates that affect you here:

General COVID-19 information for businesses(external link) — ACC

Business debt hibernation

Applications for Business debt hibernation have closed. Businesses with existing business debt hibernation arrangements may continue with the process.

COVID-19: Business debt hibernation

Got questions? Call the COVID-19 business helpline.

Got questions? Call the COVID-19 business helpline.

North Island 0800 500 362
South Island 0800 505 096

Financial support tool

If you want help figuring out what financial help you might be able to apply for, try the financial support tool on the Unite against Covid website.

The tool will take you through a series of questions about to find out more about your personal situation including:

  • your work status
  • your situation
  • whether your workplace has reduced business.

Financial support tool(external link) — covid19.govt.nz

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