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Parental tax credit

What it is

Parental tax credit is a payment for a newborn baby for the first eight weeks or 56 days after the baby is born.

Note

A newborn baby:

  • changes the number of dependent children in your care. Your Working for Families Tax Credits payments may increase.
  • is a change in your family. You need to tell us about it.

How much you can get

How much you can get depends on:

  • your total family income before tax
  • the number of dependent children in your care
  • the age of these children, and
  • the number of newborn children per year.

You can get up to $150 a week for the first eight weeks or 56 days after the baby is born.

Important

You can either get parental tax credit or paid parental leave. You can't get both payments at the same time.

Who can get it

You can get a parental tax credit if you are a family:

  • with a newborn baby, even if the baby is in a neonatal unit, or
  • who adopted a baby at birth, or within the first eight weeks after the baby is born.
Note
  • If you adopt a baby during these eight weeks, the payment is split between you and the birth mother.
  • If a baby dies during the first eight weeks after birth, we still pay you the full amount of parental tax credit.


Example

Tina and her partner Temapu are expecting their first child. They are both full-time students but neither of them receives a student allowance. Tina can apply for a parental tax credit when their baby is born.

Who can't get it

You can't get a parental tax credit if your family income for the full eight weeks includes:

  • paid parental leave
  • an income-tested benefit, even if it is suspended
  • NZ Super
  • a veteran's pension
  • a student allowance, or
  • accident compensation from ACC, unless you get this for less than three months.
Example

Kezi is 20 years old. She has a two year old daughter for whom she receives child support. Kezi's been working for a temp agency for the past 16 months. Two weeks ago, she gave birth to a baby boy and is now at home with him. Kezi's new partner Mark is a student and receives a student allowance. Kezi can't apply for a parental tax credit but she can apply for paid parental leave.

What's paid parental leave?

Paid parental leave is a government-funded entitlement paid to eligible working mothers and adoptive parents when they take parental leave from their job to care for their newborn or adopted child (under the age of six).

For most people, paid parental leave payments will be higher than parental tax credit payments. But it may be more beneficial for you to get parental tax credit if:

  • you earn less than $19,350 a year before tax from the job that you're taking leave from
  • you're expecting three or more children, eg from multiple birth or adoptions, or
  • you're taking less than 14 weeks parental leave.

If you're not sure which would be the better payment for you, call us on 0800 377 777. You can call us:

  • Monday to Friday from 8am to 8pm, and
  • Saturday from 9am to 1pm.

Find out more

Next steps

Check whether you can get any of the other Working for Families Tax Credits payments:

Then when you know what type of payment you might receive:

 


Date published: 25 Nov 2008

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