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Budget 2024: The Government has announced FamilyBoost, a proposed new childcare payment to help eligible families with the rising costs of Early Childhood Education (ECE). Find out more:

To get Working for Families, you must:

  • have a dependent child or children in your care under the age of 18, or between 18 and 19 and still at school or in tertiary study
  • be the principal caregiver
  • be aged 16 or older
  • meet the residency requirements. These are listed further down the page.

You are entitled to payments up until a child turns 18. If the child is still at school or in tertiary study when they turn 18, you can get payments until 31 December of that year.  

Answer the questions below to work out if you may be eligible to get a Working for Families payment. We will work out your payments based on your family income and circumstances when you apply.

Estimate your Working for Families payments

You can use our Working for Families calculator or chart to work out the amount you could get.

Working for Families calculator

The calculator uses the family details you provide to work out which tax credits you may qualify for and an estimate of how much you could receive.

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Estimate your Working for Families Tax Credits

Use this calculator to estimate how much your payments could be.

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Working for Families chart

Our chart gives you an idea of the amount you could get. It's useful if you have a pay rise or your hours of work have dropped.

Residency requirements

To get Working for Families you must meet 1 of the following 2 sets of requirements.

You must:

Or, the child you're claiming for must:

Example: Steven and Joe qualify for Working for Families

Steven, Joe and family arrive in New Zealand on 14 July 2006. Steven and Joe get New Zealand residency visas on 28 September 2010, but the children do not. The family has not left New Zealand at any time during the period.

The family can get Working for Families payments from 28 September 2010 as this is the date they meet the criteria. They are resident as at 28 September 2010 and have already been in New Zealand for 12 months in a row. They arrived in New Zealand on 14 July 2006 and have not left in that time.

New or returning residents

If you or your partner are a new or returning resident and have a temporary tax exemption on foreign sourced income, you must choose between getting Working for Families payments or keeping your temporary tax exemption.

If you apply for Working for Families you and your partner will be automatically opted out of the temporary tax exemption. This opt out cannot be reversed.

Temporary tax exemption

Children born before 1 January 2006

Children born in New Zealand up to 31 December 2005 are considered New Zealand residents. If you apply for Working for Families for these children, you will qualify from their dates of birth.

Children born on or after 1 January 2006 

Children born in New Zealand on or after 1 January 2006 will qualify as New Zealand residents if at least one of the parents meets one of the following conditions.

  • The parent is a New Zealand citizen.
  • The parent has permanent residency.
  • The parent is entitled to reside indefinitely in the Cook Islands, Tokelau or Niue. 

Australian citizens and residents qualify immediately if they are also a New Zealand tax resident and normally live in New Zealand. 

If you or your child are in New Zealand unlawfully, or hold only a temporary permit or visa, you are not entitled to receive Working for Families payments.

Last updated: 18 Apr 2024
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