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Jobs & benefits

How to apply for a benefit

The reapplication process

Social Security Act 2018, ss 304, 305, 306, 335

If you are getting Jobseeker Support, Sole Parent Support (or the Emergency Benefit equivalent), you have to reapply every 52 weeks.

If you’re getting Supported Living Payment, Work and Income will usually review it 26 weeks after your benefit started, and then again every year after that.

How do I reapply?

You can reapply online using MyMSD, or you can book an appointment to fill out a paper reapplication form with a case manager.

Work and Income must give you at least 20 working days’ notice before your benefit expires. Usually, they’ll remind you online via MyMSD and send you a reminder letter four weeks before.

You’ll also have to attend a meeting with a case manager, either remotely or in person. It’s okay if this meeting can only happen after the date your benefit expires – as long as you’ve contacted Work and Income to start the reapplication process before the expiry date.

Will my income be reassessed?

You might also have to fill out a “Review of Annual Income”.

If your benefit was reduced for any reason over the last year, you’ll have to fill out a “Review of Annual Income” form. This makes sure Work and Income paid you the right amount over the past 52 weeks.

Will my health condition be reassessed?

If you’ve had to provide a medical certificate as part of your benefit, you will generally have to provide an updated certificate when that one expires. Your health practitioner will decide when your current certificate expires based on how long your health condition is likely to impact your ability to work.

If you’re on a Supported Living Payment based on a health condition, you’ll usually have to get a medical reassessment every two years.

If your health condition is permanent, or is unlikely to ever improve enough to allow you to work more than 15 hours per week, your health practitioner can state that on your medical certificate. If this is the case, you won’t have to be reassessed.

For example: You’re getting Jobseeker Support, but you haven’t been working due to a medical deferral. When your medical certificate expires, if your health condition hasn’t improved and is still impacting your ability to work, you’ll need to get your health practitioner to reassess you and write you a new certificate.

I’m getting the Disability Allowance. How often do I have to provide proof of my costs?

You will have to confirm your costs every year, but if your costs are lower or the same as last year, you don’t need to provide any proof.

If you have new or more costs than last year, you’ll need to get your health practitioner to confirm that the costs are due to your disability, and provide proof of the cost (such as quotes or receipts).

Did this answer your question?

Dealing with Work and Income

Where to go for more support

Community Law

Your local Community Law Centre can provide you with free initial legal advice.

Find your local Community Law Centre online: www.communitylaw.org.nz/our-law-centres

Ministry of Social Development – Work and Income (WINZ)

See Work and Income’s website for information on whether you qualify for a benefit and how to apply for them.

Website: www.workandincome.govt.nz
Phone:  0800 559 009

Auckland Action Against Poverty (AAAP)

AAAP is a free nationwide advocacy service for people dealing with Work and Income.

Website: www.aaap.org.nz
Email: advocates@aaap.org.nz
Instagram: www.instagram.com/aucklandactionagainstpoverty
Facebook: www.facebook.com/AAAPNZ/

Helpful resources for beneficiaries: www.aaap.org.nz/resources

Beneficiaries Advocacy and Information Services (BAIS)

BAIS provides free advocacy and support for beneficiaries and low-income families in Auckland’s North Shore, Rodney and Hibiscus Coast districts.

Website: www.bais.org.nz
Phone: 09 444 9543
Instagram: www.instagram.com/bais.northshoreandrodney
Facebook: www.facebook.com/BAISnorthshoreandrodey   

Hutt Valley Benefit Education Service Trust (HV BEST)

The HV BEST provides information and support to beneficiaries in the Hutt Valley. 

Website: www.hvbest.co.nz
Email: hvbest@xtra.co.nz
Phone: 04 529 8108

Beneficiaries & Unwaged Workers Trust (BUWT)

BUWT provides information, advice and support to people on low incomes in Nelson.

Website: www.buwt.wordpress.com
Email: buwtcs@xtra.co.nz
Phone: 03 548 8171
Facebook: www.facebook.com/groups/282105670089970/?locale=pt_PT

Beneficiary Advisory Service (BAS)

The BAS provides information and support to beneficiaries in Christchurch.

Website: www.bas.org.nz
Email: bas.cprc@gmail.com
Phone: 0800 00 00 43
Facebook: www.facebook.com/BeneficiaryAdvisoryService

Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB)

CAB provides free, confidential and independent information and advice. See CAB’s website for valuable information on a range of topics.

Website: www.cab.org.nz
Phone: 0800 367 222
Facebook:  www.facebook.com/citizensadvicenz

Find your local CAB office: www.cab.org.nz/find-a-cab

Zero Data

Zero Data is a new digital support that allows anyone with a mobile device, phone or tablet to access essential Government information for free. No data is used.

Website: www.zero.govt.nz

What do I need do I need for it to work?

  •  The device is on.
  •  The device is connected to Spark, Skinny One NZ, 2Degrees, Slingshot or Orcon.

You can access information from the following agencies:

  • Te Manatū Whakahiato Ora | Ministry of Social Development
  • Te Tāhuhu o te Mātauranga | Ministry of Education
  • Te Tari Taiwhenua | Department of Internal Affairs
  • Te Whatu Ora | Health New Zealand
  • Kāinga Ora | Homes & Communities
  • Te Tāhū o te Ture | Ministry of Justice
  • Te Kaporeihana Āwhina Hunga Whara | Accident Compensation Corporation

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