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Additional help for families
Learn about additional help available from the Working for Families package. You may be eligible for help with housing costs or childcare.
What's on this page
Working for Families assistance
To be eligible to apply for any of the following, it may depend on:
- your income
- your financial assets, and/or
- the number and age of your children.
Inland Revenue does not directly provide any of the benefits or entitlements listed below.
Working for Families is making housing more affordable. The Accommodation Supplement is available to more working families and many people without children. Find out more about accommodation supplement.
Subsidies for pre-school and out-of-school care have increased significantly under Working for Families and are available to more parents earning higher incomes. Find out more about Childcare assistance.
Community services card
The Community Services Card can help you and your family with the costs of health care. You'll pay less on some health services and prescriptions.
Find out more about community services cards or call the community services card centre on 0800 999 999.
High use health card
If you don't qualify for a community services card, you may be able to get a high use health card if you visit the doctor often for an on-going medical condition. Ask your doctor about this card.
Pharmaceutical Subsidy Card
You may also qualify for a Pharmaceutical Subsidy Card if you need a lot of prescriptions. Ask your pharmacist about this card.
If you, your child or someone you're caring for has a disability, you may be able to get a disability allowance to help with the costs of having a disability.
- The disability allowance is for people who have a disability and need on-going medical care and help with everyday tasks.
- The modification grant helps with the costs of special equipment you may need at work.
- The child disability allowance helps with the extra care needed for a child with a serious physical or intellectual disability.
Special needs grant
This is a one-off payment to help out with urgent things like food, bedding and emergency dental or medical treatment.
Temporary additional support
This is a weekly payment to help you meet your essential living costs.
Recoverable assistance payment grant
This is a one-off payment to help you buy something essential immediately if you can't afford to pay for it right now. You may be able to get the grant for things like appliances, furniture, bedding, rent or school uniforms.
This may help with your costs if you:
- have had a multiple birth
- have a domestic emergency, or
- need domestic support.
Away from home allowance
This helps with the living costs of dependent children aged 16 to 17 who have to live away from home to do tertiary study or go on a training course.
New employment transition grant
This helps with your costs if you lose income in your first six months of working after being on a benefit because:
- you, your spouse or partner or child are sick, or
- you have problems with your childcare arrangements.
Transition to work grant
This is a payment to help meet the additional costs of job search, attending a job interview or entering employment for:
- people who meet the qualifying criteria and face small gaps between jobs (up to four weeks) or who are re-entering the workforce
- people who receive a main benefit from Work and Income, and