Winter Energy Payment

The Winter Energy Payment is an extra payment to help with the cost of heating your home over the winter months.

You don't need to apply – if you’re eligible, you’ll get the Winter Energy Payment automatically along with your other regular payments from us.

Information

The Winter Energy Payment for 2020 will stop on 1 October 2020. It will re-start on 1 May 2021 until 1 October 2021.

  • Who can get the Winter Energy Payment

    You'll automatically get the Winter Energy Payment if you're getting:

    • NZ Superannuation
    • Veteran's Pension
    • Jobseeker Support
    • Jobseeker Support Student Hardship
    • Sole Parent Support
    • Supported Living Payment
    • Young Parent Payment
    • Youth Payment
    • Emergency Benefit
    • Emergency Maintenance Allowance.

    Who can't get the Winter Energy Payment

    You can't get the Winter Energy Payment if you:

    • don't get one of the payments listed above
    • get an overseas pension which means you don't get any NZ Super or Veteran's Pension's
    • get Residential Care Subsidy or Residential Support Subsidy
    • live overseas.
  • Payment period and rates

    Winter Energy Payment dates

    The Winter Energy Payment is paid from 1 May to 1 October.

    Winter Energy Payment rates for 2020

    These have been adjusted in response to COVID-19.

    Single people with no dependent children

    $40.91 a week

    Couples, and people with dependent children

    $63.64 a week

    You'll get the Winter Energy Payment automatically along with your other regular payments from us (either weekly or fortnightly).

    The Winter Energy Payment:

    • doesn't affect your other payments from us, or your Income Related Rent
    • is a non-taxable payment
    • can't be paid as a lump sum.

    If you have a partner

    Couples are paid $63.64, whether you live together or separately.

    It's paid to one person in the couple. The system we use for payments can’t split it to pay into 2 separate accounts.

    Generally, we'll pay it into the bank account of the person in the couple who has the lowest client number - you can find this on your Community Services Card or SuperGold Card or letters from us. The letters about the Winter Energy Payment are sent to the person with the lowest client number only.

    If you’d like to switch the payment to the other person’s account, please call us.

  • Travelling overseas during the payment period

    Overseas travel when you're getting NZ Super or Veteran's Pension

    If you're heading away from New Zealand over the winter months we can keep paying your Winter Energy Payment for up to 28 days. Tell us if you plan to leave New Zealand for more than 28 days, otherwise we might pay you too much and have to ask for some money back. The easiest way to let us know is to either:

    When you return to New Zealand

    If you return to New Zealand:

    • before 1 October, you need to contact us so we can start your Winter Energy Payment again. Call our Seniors line on 0800 552 002
    • after 1 October, your Winter Energy Payment will automatically start again next year, as long as you still qualify.

    Overseas travel and getting a benefit

    You need to let us know your travel plans, the reasons for travelling, and for how long.
    Payments and your overseas travel

    If you're able to keep getting your benefit when you're overseas we'll also keep paying your Winter Energy Payment for up to 28 days.

    When you return to New Zealand

    If you return to New Zealand:

    • before 1 October, you need to contact us so we can start your Winter Energy Payment again. Call us on 0800 559 009
    • after 1 October, your Winter Energy Payment will automatically start again next year, as long as you still qualify.
  • Opt out of the payment

    Opt out of Winter Energy Payment

    If you want to opt out of getting this payment, you can do this by either:

    • completing the 'Stop or restart Winter Energy Payment' online form, or
    • calling us.

    We won't opt you back in to get it again (even in future years) unless you ask us to.

    Opt back in to Winter Energy Payment

    If you've opted out of getting this payment and want to opt back in again, you can do this at any time by either:

    • completing the 'Stop or restart Winter Energy Payment' online form, or
    • calling us.

    If you opt back in outside of the payment period (eg 1 May - 1 October), your payment will restart with the next Winter Energy Payment period.