Benefits and payments homepage
Take a look at the range of benefits and payments we have available.
Redundancy, health condition or disability or another reason you can’t work
Food, school costs, power, accommodation or other living expenses you need help with
You’ve had a relationship break-up, family breakdown or violent relationship end
Health and Disability
Counselling, prescription and GP costs, medical alarms and other costs we can help with
Travelling overseas, how to apply, payment rates and dates, overseas pensions, income and other info for Seniors
Caring for someone else’s child or someone with a health condition, injury or disability
Urgent or unexpected costs
Dental, glasses, car repairs, fridge, washing machine, funeral or other urgent costs you need help with
Childcare, school uniforms, stationery, having a baby and other costs if you have children
Fixing issues with Accommodation Supplement, Special Benefit and other payments we’ve made
16-19 year olds
Education, training, work and benefit help for 16-19 year olds
Benefits and forms
A-Z list of benefits, forms, benefit rates
Find out what services we can offer to help you find work and when you start a new job.
Looking for work
We have jobs available now in various industries and you can search on our job websites.
Help with your job search
From advice on making a plan, to tips on where to look and following up leads.
Training and experience
Our programmes can help you get ready for work with training and work experience.
Job Connect on Facebook
Find out how we can help you get ready to work, find work, and support available while you're working.
CVs and cover letters
We’ve got great templates and advice for writing your CV or cover letter, and filling out job applications.
Help with work costs
Get help to pay for the things you need to start work
Job support and advice
Get all the support and advice you need to stay in work.
Health and disability
If you want to work, we can support you to find the right job for you.
Start your own business
We can help you get your business up and running.
Get advice about how to prepare for and deliver a great interview.
Help for 16-19 year olds
We’ve got extra support for young people to get ready for work and find a job.
On a benefit homepage
Check out what you need to do when you're getting a benefit or other payment from us.
Address, contact details, overseas travel, childcare, relationship or anything else that’s changed.
Declare income, wages deduction calculator and tables
Change in your childcare situation, continue childcare payments, cohort entry schools and other childcare information
Re-apply for Jobseeker Support, Sole Parent Support, Temporary Additional Support and more
Check or stop your payments, payment cards and other information
Check your debt, repayments and other debt information
Rights and responsibilities
Our commitment to you, obligations, complaints, benefit fraud and more
Find out how we can help you with housing.
Nowhere to stay
Get help if you have nowhere to stay right now.
Find a house
Find out where to look for private housing, or apply for public (social) housing.
Living in your home
Get help with accommodation costs, and advice on any housing issues and public housing tenancies.
Find out how we can help if you’re moving house.
Out of School Care and Recreation (OSCAR) Subsidy
Out of School Care and Recreation (OSCAR) Subsidy is a payment which helps families with the costs of before and after school care for up to 20 hours a week, and school holiday programmes for up to 50 hours a week.
From 1 April 2023, income thresholds and hourly rates will increase for Childcare Subsidy and Out of School Care and Recreation (OSCAR) Subsidy. More information is in our news story.
Keep in touch
If you have any questions about this or any other issues, you can email Community_Information@msd.govt.nz
You may be able to get an OSCAR Subsidy if:
- you're the main carer of a dependent child
- you're a New Zealand citizen or permanent resident
- your family is on a low or middle income.
You also need to be in one of these situations:
- working, studying or on an approved training course
- involved in an activity that Work and Income has asked you to do
- a shift worker who works nights
- seriously ill or disabled
- caring for a child in hospital or for a child you get the Child Disability Allowance for.
You can't get the OSCAR Subsidy if the child's other parent or caregiver can take care of the child.
It also depends on how much you and your partner earn.
To receive your OSCAR subsidy from the day your child starts the programme, you need to submit your application to us before your child's first day. This is especially important at school holidays.
The child or young person must:
- normally live in New Zealand
- be at school
- be under 14 (or under 18 if you get a Child Disability Allowance for them)
- be attending an approved OSCAR programme for at least 3 hours a week, which includes:
- before school
- after school
- holiday programmes and camps.
Check if you can get OSCAR Subsidy
To find out if you could get OSCAR Subsidy and what else you might qualify for, use our 'Check what you might get' tool.
How much you get depends on the size of your family, your income and how many hours a week your child goes to the childcare provider.
If you don't know how many hours of care you'll need each week (because you're a casual or on-call worker for instance) we'll talk with you about your options when you apply for a subsidy.
All subsidies are paid directly to the childcare provider.
When does it start from?
Childcare assistance starts from the date the care starts (or from the date you apply if you apply after it starts).
The OSCAR Standards provide reassurance to parents and caregivers that a programme is properly run and takes place in a safe environment for children. In addition, parents and caregivers may qualify for an OSCAR Subsidy. Parents of children attending unapproved programmes cannot receive an OSCAR Subsidy.
We suggest you apply at least 3 to 4 weeks before you need your subsidy to start.
We can grant you the financial assistance you're entitled to from the date you first contact us, or the date your childcare started, whichever is later, if you complete your application within 20 working days of that date.
If you're a Youth Service client, you need to talk to your Youth Service provider.
Apply for OSCAR Subsidy only
- You and your partner (if you have one) need to complete the Childcare Assistance application form.
- Your childcare provider also needs to complete the supervisor's section inside this form.
- You'll need to email the application form, and any other documents we've asked you to get to Centralised_childcare_reviews@msd.govt.nz or you can ask your childcare provider to send this to us on your behalf.
Apply for OSCAR Subsidy and other payments
You can apply online through MyMSD. We'll also check to see if you can get any other help from us based on the answers you give in your application.
Once you've applied online, we'll tell you what you need to do. This will include having to get your childcare provider to complete the supervisor's section of the Childcare Assistance application form
Childcare assistance is reviewed regularly. It also usually stops or is reviewed:
- the day after your job or course ends
- after 12 weeks if you stop work because you have a health condition or are injured
- when your child reaches the age limit for the subsidy
- when your child leaves the pre-school facility or OSCAR programme
- if the child leaves your care.
Changes in your circumstances
You must also tell us straight away about any changes in your circumstances that could affect your payments, eg:
- if you or your partner's income changes
- if your child stops going or moves to another early childhood programme or OSCAR programme
- if there's a change in your child's attendance
- if the number of hours you (or your partner) work or study each week changes
- if the reason why you get a subsidy changes, eg your health improves or your child leaves hospital
- your child starts or stops receiving 20 Hours ECE.
This information is a guide only.
Contact us to talk about your individual circumstances.