Online application process for new clients
If you don't have a client number, you can apply for a benefit, payment or NZ Super by using RealMe to log in and complete the online form for new clients.
If you have a partner, they may need to complete some of these steps as well.
1. Complete the online form
You'll need to log in to the online form using your RealMe login. If you don't have a RealMe login, you'll need to create one
The online form should take around 30 minutes to complete. But, as long as you’ve started it, you can save it and come back to it later. All you need to do is complete and submit it within 60 days.
It’ll automatically work out what you might be able to get based on the answers you provide.
Once you submit your online form
You won't be able to change your answers. If you need to make changes, call us - you may need to complete a new application depending on your changes.
You have 20 working days to complete the application process.
You'll get a page that confirms your application has been submitted with the following information:
- your reference number
- next steps
- supporting documents you need to provide.
If you provided an email address in your online form, we'll send you an email with a reference number and your next steps.
2. Next steps
Once you submit your application, we'll let you know if you need to either:
- book an appointment
- print and drop off your application and supporting documents, or
- wait for us to contact you shortly.
Book an appointment
You can call us to book an appointment. When our phone system asks you what you’re calling about, say “book appointment”. We’ll book either:
- an appointment for you and your partner (if you have one) to come in and see us, or
- a Job search support (‘Work for You’) seminar at our office for you and your partner (if you have one). You’ll need to attend the seminar and then call us again to book an appointment to come in and see us.
At your appointment, we’ll:
- go over your application with you to check that you get all the benefits and payments you’re entitled to
- scan and save copies of your documents so you won’t have to bring in the same information if you visit us again
- help you fill out a Jobseeker Profile if you're available and looking for work - we'll ask you some questions about your work experience, skills and qualifications and the type of work you're looking for, so we can help you find a job..
Print and drop off your application and supporting documents
If you’re applying for New Zealand Superannuation, you may need to print out your application form and sign it. You can print it out on the ‘Application form submitted’ page, after you submit your application.
If you can’t print your application, call us and we’ll post a copy to you.
You’ll need to drop your application and supporting documents off to one of our service centres.
Wait for us to contact you shortly
If you’re 16-17 or under 19 with a dependent child, we’ll contact you directly and book you an appointment with a Youth Service Provider.
If we haven't called within 2 working days, call us on 0800 559 009 (Monday Friday 7am-6pm, Saturday 8am-1pm). When asked why you’re calling, say “apply”.
3. Gather supporting documents
After you submit your application, we’ll let you know what supporting documents you need to provide. We’ll also email this to you.
If you need to meet with us, you’ll need to bring these supporting documents with you to your appointment.
We may also ask you to provide a medical certificate.
Most GPs now send us medical certificates electronically. Make sure your doctor includes your client number on the certificate when they send it to us.
If your doctor doesn’t send your medical certificate electronically, you’ll need to bring or send it in.
4. Outcome of your application
We’ll process your application as soon we can, but we can’t finish processing it until we’ve received all your information and supporting documents.
Once your application’s processed, we can work out what you can get and send you a letter to let you know.
If you disagree with our decision, you can ask for a review of decision
5. Your payments will start
We’ll tell you when your payments will start in the letter we send you. Usually, you’ll get your first payment within 2-3 weeks after you apply, or from the date your training or course starts.
You may have to wait longer if you’ve recently been in work and:
- left your job without a good reason
- lost your job because of misconduct
- got holiday pay or another payment at the end of your job
- are getting sick pay from your employer.
6. Manage your information online