The COVID-19 wage subsidy scheme has been created to help businesses that need to shut down under Alert Level 4 pay workers for an extended period of time. The wage subsidy scheme will support employers and their staff to maintain an employment connection and ensure an income for affected employees, even if the employee is unable to actually work any hours.
Applications for the modified wage subsidy scheme will be open until New Zealand moves down from COVID-19 Alert Level 4. Applications can be made on the Work and Income website.
The wage subsidy scheme:
- supports employers adversely affected by COVID-19, so that they can continue to pay their employees
- supports workers to ensure they continue to receive income, even if they are unable to work.
The modified wage subsidy scheme is available to all businesses adversely affected by COVID-19 including:
- sole traders
- registered charities
- incorporated societies
- post-settlement governance entities.
- The scheme excludes state sector organisations.
The aim of the scheme is to provide sufficient support to enable people to stay connected to their jobs, and continue to receive income now that we have moved to an Alert Level 4 shut down.
Employers will be eligible where they have a 30% revenue drop attributable to COVID-19.
The scheme provides these businesses with subsidies for any named employees (including any essential workers employed by affected employers).
Before receiving a subsidy, employers must take measures to manage the implications of COVID-19 on their business. These measures might include, but are not limited to, talking with their banks and drawing on internal cash reserves.
Visit the Work and Income website for more information.
Payment rates under the modified wage subsidy scheme are unchanged from the original COVID-19 leave and wage subsidy schemes. They are:
- $585.80 per week for full-time employees, where full-time is 20 hours or more per week
- $350 per week for part-time employees, where part-time is less than 20 hours per week.
For more information on the Wage Subsidy Scheme – click here.