Supported Living Payment

Supported Living Payment is a weekly payment to help you if you have, or are caring for someone with, a health condition, injury or disability.

  • Who can get it

    You may be able to get the Supported Living Payment if you are either:

    • permanently and severely restricted in your ability to work because of a health condition, injury or disability
    • totally blind
    • caring full-time for someone at home who would otherwise need hospital-level or residential care (or equivalent) who is not your partner.

    You must also be a New Zealand citizen or permanent resident who normally lives here, and who has lived here for at least two years at one time since becoming a New Zealand citizen or permanent resident.

    If not, please talk to us as you may qualify for the Emergency Benefit, or we may have an agreement with the country where you've been living.

    Have a health condition, injury or disability

    To get the Supported Living Payment because of a health condition, injury or disability, you must be either:

    • permanently and severely restricted in your capacity to work because of a health condition, injury or disability. This means you:
      • have a condition affecting your capacity to work for more than 2 years, OR
      • have a life expectancy of less than 2 years AND
      • can't regularly work 15 hours or more a week in open employment
    • totally blind.

    You must also be 16 years or older.

    As part of your application for Supported Living Payment we'll need you to give us information that confirms your condition and the impact it has on your ability to work. We'll let you know what's needed and how to get this to us.

    Full-time carer

    To get the Supported Living Payment because you're a full-time carer, you need to be caring full-time for someone at home who isn't your partner.

    The person can be:

    • your child
    • a family member (other than your partner or spouse)
    • a member of your community.

    The person you're caring for must otherwise need to receive hospital or residential-level care. Examples of this level of care are:

    • rest home care
    • residential disability care
    • extended care services for severely disabled children and young people
    • inpatient or residential hospital care.

    If you have a partner, your partner can't be included in your Supported Living Payment. Talk to us if they need financial assistance.

    This benefit may be for you if you cannot work full-time because you need to care for someone.

    If you are 16 or 17 years old, you will need to talk to us about the situation before you can get this benefit.

    As part of the application process we'll need to see medical information from the health practitioner of the person you're caring for. We'll let you know what's needed and how to get this to us.

    There is an income limit for this assistance.

    Check if you can get Supported Living Payment

    To find out if you could get Supported Living Payment and what else you might qualify for, use our 'Check what you might get' tool.

  • What you can get

    Supported Living Payment is paid weekly.

    Caring for someone

    If you're caring for someone, how much you get depends on:

    • your situation, and
    • how much you and your partner (if you have one) earn.

    Not caring for someone

    If you're not caring for someone, how much you get depends on:

    • your situation and
    • how much you earn (in some cases we may not count all of your income).

    If you're totally blind, we won't take any of your income into account. If you have a partner, their income will be taken into account (unless they are totally blind as well).

    More information

  • How to apply

    How you apply depends on whether you're already getting a benefit or not.

    Not getting a benefit

    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.

    Already getting a benefit

    If you are on another benefit (e.g. Jobseeker), call us. We'll let you know what you need to do.

  • What happens next

    Once you've submitted your online form, we'll call if there's anything else you need to do.

    Apply for child support if you're a sole parent

    If you get Supported Living Payment and you're a sole parent, you need to fill in a Child Support application form.

    This helps Inland Revenue collect child support payments from the other parent of your child.

    There are some situations when you don't need to apply. Everyone's situation is different.

    We'll contact you when we process your application and let you know what you need to do.

    If your application's approved

    • We'll let you know when your payments will start.
    • We'll also send you a Community Services Card to help with the costs of prescriptions and going to the doctor.
    • If you have dependent children under 18, you'll also get a Family Tax Credit from Inland Revenue.

    The health and disability support system may also be able to help, eg, time off for caregivers or home support services. Visit the Ministry of Health website for more information.

  • Something changes

    If you're getting Supported Living Payment, you need to keep us up-to-date with any changes that might affect how much you get paid, eg, travelling or moving overseas, earning income, etc.

linksContact us

Contact us for more information.