Aug 23, 2021 7:34:37 AM

Support for Businesses and Workers During COVID-19

Topics: Financial Health, Health and Wellbeing, COVID-19 0

Following the move to level 4 lockdown on 17 August 2021, Government has once again triggered support for businesses and workers. Along with Government’s Wage Subsidy Scheme and the Resurgence Support Payment, a number of other support measures are also being provided for businesses and workers. Read on to find a brief summary of the support you may be eligible for.

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Resurgence Support Payment 

From 8am on Tuesday 24 August 2021, businesses and organisations that experience a 30% drop in revenue over a 7-day period – compared to a typical seven-day period in the six weeks before the increase in alert level - and that meet other eligibility criteria, can apply for the Resurgence Support Payment. Applications will remain open for one month after a nationwide return to Alert Level 1.

The decline in revenue must be a result of the specific alert level change, not just COVID-19 in general, and you must have been in business for at least six months to be eligible. This payment is not a loan, so does not need to be repaid. The payment must be used to help cover business expenses such as wages and fixed costs.

Calculate how much you may be entitled to and find out how to apply here.

Wage Subsidy Scheme

The Wage Subsidy is available to eligible businesses, organisations and self-employed workers impacted by the move to Alert Level 4 on 17 August 2021. You can apply for the Wage Subsidy scheme on the Work and Income website.

The payments have now been increased to:

  • $600 per week per full-time employee
  • $359 per week per part-time employee. 

Short-Term Absence Payment

For workers who are required to stay home while awaiting the results of a COVID-19 test, the COVID-19 Short-Term Absence Payment is available at all Alert Levels. This is payable to both employers and self-employed workers, as a one-off payment of $350 for each eligible worker, increasing to $359 for each eligible worker from 24 August 2021. Apply here. 

Leave Support Scheme

The COVID-19 Leave Support Scheme provides a payment to businesses to pay their workers and those who are self-employed who meet certain health criteria, for example if they have COVID-19. The scheme is also applicable if you have been told by a health official to self-isolate and cannot work from home.

This support will be paid as a lump sum covering two weeks (you can reapply if required) of $585.50 per week for full-time workers and $350 per week for part-time workers. From 24 August 2021, the payment will increase to $600 per week for full-time workers and $359 per week for part-time workers. Find out more and apply here. 

Small Business Cash Flow Loan Scheme (SBCS)

Government will provide loans to small businesses, including sole traders and the self-employed, impacted by COVID-19 to support their cash flow needs. If you've previously applied for a SBCS and have fully repaid it, you can apply again. Applications are open until 31 December 2023 and can be made through myIR. Check eligibility criteria here. 

Tax and ACC support

If you’re having difficulties meeting your tax obligations due to COVID-19, Inland Revenue has various support schemes and options to help. Check the IRD website for more details on this.

ACC levy invoices for the 20/21 financial year will now be sent in October.  

Business debt hibernation

Business Debt Hibernation is a government initiative created in response to COVID-19. It helps companies, trusts, and other business entities affected by COVID-19 to manage their debts. Applications are open until 31 October 2021. Find out more about Business Debt Hibernation here.

Got questions or need support?

Call the free COVID-19 Business Helpline

North Island 0800 500 362 | South Island 0800 505 096 

Get in touch with a Mortgage Express branded mortgage adviser if you’d like to find out about refinancing or refixing your home loan, getting insurance, or for any other financial advice you may require at this time. Stay safe New Zealand.

Reference: https://www.business.govt.nz/covid-19/