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Help: Accessibility

Common questions about site accessibility

What accessibility standards does this website meet?

We developed this website with a view to accommodate the access needs of a wide cross-section of the community. This overriding philosophy governs the standards and practices reflected in the design of the website. To achieve our core objectives we have:

  • minimised the use of mechanisms such as JavaScript, CGI programs and dynamic HTML
  • designed pages to be viewed at a screen resolution of 800x600 pixels
  • designed pages to be best viewed in Netscape Navigator or Microsoft Internet Explorer versions 4.0 and above
  • written the pages to conform to the W3C HTML level 4.01 specification (which are supported by the above browsers)
  • made use of cascading style sheets (CSS) 2.0 to ensure that all content is presented in a consistent manner. CSS 2.0 is supported by all Navigator and Internet Explorer versions 4.0 and above. If supported by your browser, your local style settings may override our layout, font or colours.

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How can I change the text colour and size on this website?

How to change visibility features
The following suggestions to improve the visibility of web pages will apply to any site that you visit. However, you may find that not all pages within a site are compatible. The images on the screen will not be affected. These instructions have been tested with Internet Explorer version 5 and Netscape version 4.7

For Microsoft Internet Explorer
To apply the font and colour changes below permanently:

  • on the 'Tools' menu, click 'Internet Options'
  • on the 'General' tab, click on 'Accessibility'
  • click in each of the three boxes to show ticks
  • click 'OK' .

Text with a sans serif font (such as Arial) is easier to read than a serif font (such as Times New Roman).

To change the text font:

  • on the 'Tools' menu, click 'Internet Options'
  • on the 'General' tab, click 'Fonts'.
  • in the 'Web page font' and 'Plain text font' lists, choose the fonts you would like to use.
  • click 'OK'.

To enlarge the text:

  • on the 'Tools' menu, click 'Internet Options'
  • on the 'General' tab, click 'Accessibility'
  • tick the 'Ignore font sizes specified on web pages' check box
  • click 'OK'
  • on the 'Browser' menu click 'View'
  • click 'Text size'
  • choose the size of text.

Combinations of fonts, typefaces and background colours used in web page design may result in text being difficult to read. However, you can choose settings to suit you. For example black text on a yellow background gives a distinct contrast.

To change the text colour and background colour:

  • on the 'Tools' menu, click 'Internet Options'
  • on the 'General' tab, click 'Colours'
  • deselect the 'Use Windows Colours' tick box
  • select the box next to 'Text' and choose a colour. Click 'OK'.
  • select the box next to 'Background' and choose a colour. Click 'OK'.

To prevent graphics from appearing on web pages:

  • under 'Tools' , click 'Internet Options'
  • on the 'Advanced' tab, scroll down to the 'Multimedia' heading
  • click on the graphics options ('animations', 'videos', 'pictures' and 'images') to remove the ticks
  • click on 'Apply', and then click on 'OK'.
  • if graphics still appear, select 'View' then 'Refresh' from the toolbar, or press F5.

To change the size of the window:

  • click 'View' then 'Full Screen' from the toolbar, or press F11.

There are other options to tailor web pages that help make them easier to read. These may be found under the 'Tools' menu:

  • click on 'Internet Options'
  • select the 'Advanced' tab
  • choose from the options available to improve visibility.

For Netscape Communicator

To make any changes to your browser settings, you should first open the 'Preferences' box by clicking on 'Edit' and selecting 'Preferences'. You may then choose to make any of the changes listed below.

To change the text font:

  • click on 'Appearance'
  • click 'Font'
  • choose the 'Variable Width Font' and 'Fixed Width Font' you want to use
  • click 'OK'.
  • If you want to set these fonts for all future usage on your browser, click on 'Use my default fonts overriding document specified fonts'.

To change the text and background colours:

  • click on 'Appearance'
  • click 'Colours'
  • select the box next to 'Text' and choose a colour
  • click 'OK'
  • select the box next to 'Background' and choose a colour
  • click 'OK'
  • click 'OK' to close 'Preferences'.
  • To set these colours as your browser default, click on 'Always use my colours, overriding document'.

To prevent images from loading on web pages:

  • select 'Advanced'
  • click in the box marked 'Automatically load images' to remove the tick
  • click 'OK'.

For further assistance in changing your browser settings, there is also a 'Help' menu on your browser toolbar. Please refer to this for further information.

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How can I use this site without a mouse?

Access keys are keyboard shortcuts which allow links within a website to be activated without using the mouse. The exact procedure for activating access keys depends on your operating system and browser. Instructions for different operation systems and browsers are provided along with a list of active Inland Revenue website access keys.

The major links on this site have been assigned "access keys". Access keys are keyboard shortcuts which allow links within a website to be activated without using the mouse. The exact procedure for activating access keys depends on your operating system and browser. Instructions for different operation systems and browsers can be found below the list of active Inland Revenue website access keys.

  • 0 Go to list of access keys
  • 1 Go to Inland Revenue homepage
  • 2 Go to Sitemap
  • 3 Go to Search facility
  • 9 Go to Contacts page
  • [ Go to top of page
  • / Go to www.govt.nz

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Operating system and browser support

Using access keys differs according to the operating system and browser your use. Here instructions for the most commonly used:

Operating System Function Keys
Internet Explorer 5+: Hold down the ALT key and select the number/letter/character of the access key, then press ENTER
Internet Explorer 4: Hold down the ALT key and select the number/letter/character of the access key
Internet Explorer 5+ for Mac: Hold down the CTRL key and select the number/letter/character of the access key
Internet Explorer 4.5 for Mac: Access keys are not supported
Netscape 6+: Hold down the ALT key and select the number/letter/character of the access key
Netscape earlier versions: Access keys are not supported
Mozilla: Hold down the ALT key and select the number/letter/character of the access key
Opera: Access keys are not supported

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Can I use screen magnification software?

Yes.  This site supports screen magnification software.

I have very restricted vision. What are my options?

Your screen resolution and how to change it

Your screen is made up of dots called pixels. The number of pixels displayed per inch of your screen, i.e. the screen resolution, determines the size of the page you are viewing. The higher the resolution, the smaller a web page will appear on your screen and vice versa.

For the best view of our site and our myIR Secure Online Services, we recommend setting your screen resolution to 800 x 600 pixels - this is the most common setting for home computers.

To change your screen resolution:

  • Click 'Start', choose 'Settings' then 'Control Panel'
  • Double click the 'Display' icon, select the 'Settings' tab
  • In the desktop area, use your mouse to drag the arrow to the preferred resolution
  • Click 'Apply' then 'OK'

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I still have an accessibility problem with this website. Who should I contact?

In response to the growth of the Internet we are progressively changing our website to better suit your needs. If you have ideas about this website or an opinion on how we can better serve you (as a member of the community or as a stakeholder), then let us know by emailing us at webmaster@ird.govt.nz.

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Date published: 11 Dec 2008

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