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A guide to the Disablement, Surviving Spouse or Partner and Veteran's pensions
These entitlements are only available to New Zealand veterans.
There are also a number of other entitlements available to the veteran community. Read about these on the Veteran's Affairs website.
- This is a compensatory award for people who have a disability attributable to their service. It is administered by Veteran's Affairs.
- To qualify, you must have have suffered disablement as a consequence of a service-related injury or illness.
For more information, visit the:
This is a compensatory award for the partners of people who have died from disabilities attributable to service. It is administered by Veterans' Affairs.
For more information visit the:
The Veteran's Pension is income for veterans who have qualifying operational service or served in a war or an emergency and who have reached the qualifying age for New Zealand Superannuation.
You can find out more about the qualifications for Veteran's Pension here.
The Veteran's Pension is taxed and is based on your individual situation.
- Payments are made direct to your bank account (this may be a joint account). If you have other income, you may be taxed at a different rate. Please talk with Inland Revenue about this by calling 0800 227 774 (please have your IRD number handy).
- If you have a service-related disablement of 52% or more, a lump sum payment will be paid to either your surviving partner or any dependent children at the time of your death.
- If you have a partner who is getting the Veteran's Pension in their own right, you will be paid a lump sum payment upon your partner's death.
- Unlike New Zealand Superannuation, the Veteran's Pension will not reduce if you need long-term hospital care. You will also automatically get the Community Services Card.
Your documents will need to be photocopied and certified (certification can be done by a Justice of the Peace, solicitor or Work and Income staff member). Please see the checklist at the end of this brochure for what to bring.
Send your application and documents to:
The Veteran’s Pension Centre
PO Box 5515
Any income you earn won’t affect the rate of the Veteran's Pension paid.
If you’ve included your partner in your payments before 9 November 2020 your Veteran’s Pension will be income tested. You can find out how this affects your payments here:
You'll have Qualifying Service if you have either:
- Qualifying Routine Service - if you served in the NZ Armed Forces before 1 April 1974, or
- Qualifying Operational Service - if you have deployed on one or more specific operations.
For more information, visit the:
You may be able to claim from another country if you live in New Zealand but have a disability that is attributable to your service in the United Kingdom, Australian or Canadian armed forces. We can help you with your claim, or to apply for a review of a pension you may already receive.
To find out more about war pensions from these countries, please contact Veteran's Affairs free on 0800 4 VETERAN (0800 483 8372).
- If you do not qualify for the Disablement Pension from Veterans’ Affairs and your disability was caused after 1 April 1974, you may be able to get help from ACC. Your local ACC office can tell you more about this.
- Any payments you receive from accident insurance, such as ACC, may affect your pension. Please ask us about this.
- Your Veteran’s Pension will stop when you die but your partner and family may qualify for other payments, such as the Surviving Spouse or Partner Pension or the War Funeral Grant.
- It is very important your family notifies us when you die so that payments stop. This will help prevent overpayment, which means your family will not have a debt to pay back.
- If you receive the Veteran’s Pension, you are automatically entitled to the Community Services Card. Please ask us about this.
- Depending on your income and circumstances, we may be able to offer extra financial help. Check our Benefits and payments.
It’s really important you include everything we need to see with your application. If you are unsure about any item, please call us on 0800 650 656.
|We need to see proof of...||You need to bring along...|
|Your lawful residence in New Zealand||Your New Zealand birth certificate or current New Zealand passport, or other country passport with residence class visa or residence permit, or New Zealand Citizenship Certificate|
|Your identity||Two or more documents supporting your identity. These could include your marriage certificate, bank statements, driver licence etc. |
Note: one of these (or your proof of residence) must be at least 2 years old.
|Any name changes you have had||Marriage certificate, Civil Union certificate or deed poll papers|
|Your bank account number(s)||A bank statement, screenshot of your online banking (showing your name, account number and the bank's logo), or deposit slip|
|Any social security benefit or pension you get from overseas||A letter, statement or payslip showing your payments|
|The medical condition that stops you working (if you are under qualifying age for the Veteran's Pension)||An application form with the medical part filled in by your doctor|
Contact us if you:
- would like assistance
- aren't sure if you can get assistance
- are struggling to support yourself or your family
- would like more information.