Disability Allowance is a weekly payment for people who have regular, ongoing costs because of a disability, such as visits to the doctor or hospital, medicines, extra clothing or travel.
You don't have to be on a benefit to qualify for a Disability Allowance.
Who can get it
You may get a Disability Allowance if you:
- have a disability that is likely to last at least six months
- have regular, ongoing costs because of your disability that are not fully covered by another agency
- are a New Zealand citizen or permanent resident
- normally live in New Zealand and intend to stay here.
It also depends on how much you and your partner earn.
The income limits for Disability Allowance are:
Your situation Weekly income limits before tax Single 16-17 years $531.61 Single 18+ years $648.92 Married, civil union or de facto couple (with or without children) $963.80 Sole parent 1 child $741.41 Sole parent 2+ children $781.14
You can apply on behalf of a child if they're 18 or under and financially dependent on you.
You may be able to get both the Disability Allowance and the Child Disability Allowance for the same child.
You can't get a Disability Allowance if you get Board payments from Child, Youth and Family for the child.
The information provided in this page is a guide only. Contact us to talk about your individual circumstances.
What you can get
We pay up to a maximum of $63.22 a week for Disability Allowance and it's not taxed. How much you get depends on the extra costs you have because of your disability.
The Disability Allowance is usually paid straight into your bank account with your main benefit or pension (or weekly if you don't get any other assistance).
The Disability Allowance can help pay for a number of things - as long as your doctor tells us you need them because of your disability. Here are some of the things we may be able to help with, and the sorts of proof we need to see - so keep all your receipts.
Some of the extra costs we may be able to help with... We'll need to see... Doctor's, specialist's and hospital fees that aren't already subsidised Receipts or invoices showing the date, cost and reason for your visit Prescription fees Receipts or print-outs from your chemist showing the date, cost, the item you received and whether it's subsidised Travel to your doctor, specialist, hospital or counsellor Tickets or receipts showing the date, cost and how you travelled (if you travelled in your own car, we need to know the cc rating of your car and how far you travelled) Heating Your summer and winter electricity bills Medical alarm rental and monitoring
The Disability Allowance - Medical Assessment for Medical Alarm form completed by a doctor, and the contract or receipt for the installation/rental of the medical alarm.
When your Disability Allowance is reviewed, we need to see proof of any costs that have increased or are new. Ask us for a Disability Allowance file to keep your receipts in.
Are you eligible?
Find out if you might get this benefit, and what other financial assistance may be available to you.
How to apply
What application form you fill out depends on what payments you’re already getting from us.
We can grant you the financial assistance you’re entitled to from the date you first contact us if you complete your application within 20 working days of that date.
Not getting any payments from us or only getting childcare payments
You can apply online.
If you don’t want to complete the form online you can print out and complete an Extra Help application form.
2. Meet with us
Once you've filled out an application form, you'll need to meet with us.
You can book an appointment using MyMSD.
To register, all you need is your client number and the phone number or email address that we have recorded in our system.
If you can't use MyMSD you can call us on 0800 559 009. When our phone system asks what you're calling about, say "apply". We'll put you through to someone who can arrange an appointment and answer any questions you have.
When you come and meet with us, you'll need to bring:
- your application form (if you haven't applied online)
- proof of your costs.
Already getting payments from us (eg, a benefit or Accommodation Supplement) but not Disability Allowance
You can complete a Disability Allowance application form. Your doctor also needs to complete the Disability Certificate inside this form.
You'll need to drop off the following documents to one of our service centres, or post them to us:
- The application form
- Proof of your costs.
If you can’t print the form out, contact us and we'll send one to you, or you can pick one up from one of our service centre.
If you can't drop off these documents today, contact us now if you haven't already done so. This is so we can pay your Disability Allowance from the right date.
Applying for counselling or medical alarm costs
If you’re applying for a Disability Allowance for the cost of counselling or medical alarms, there’s an extra form that needs to be completed.
- You, your doctor and counsellor also need to complete a Disability Certificate - Counselling form
Medical alarm costs:
- Your doctor also needs to complete a Disability Allowance - Medical Alarm Assessment form
Applying on behalf of someone else
You can apply for a Disability Allowance on someone else's behalf, but only if they've filled out a form to appoint you as their agent.
Already getting Disability Allowance and costs change
Contact us for more information.