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  • Hayley Duckett

Wage Subsidy Eligibility Checklist

Updated: Aug 4

Author: Kate Sheedy, Business Advisor at Velocite


The Ministry of Social Development are now checking if businesses who received the Wage Subsidy actually met the criteria, those that did not meet the criteria will be required to pay back the wage subsidy.


If you received the wage subsidy now is the time to ensure that you did meet the eligibility criteria and have kept the appropriate documentation to support your eligibility, you can utilise our checklist.

To be eligible for the wage subsidy, you must meet points 1-6 below:

1. Are you an eligible employer?

  • Registered charity

  • Non-government organisations

  • Self-employed or sole trader

  • Contractor

  • Incorporated society

  • Post-settlement government entities

  • Local government organisations

  • Kindergartens and early childhood centers

2. Is your business registered and operating in New Zealand? (must meet all)

  • Registered with the NZ Companies Office

  • Physically located in NZ

  • Employees legally work in NZ

3. Do you have a 30% decline in revenue related to COVID-19?

  • 30% decline over the period of a month compared with the same month last year, or

  • 30% decline over 30days compared to the same 30days last year, and

  • The decline is between January 2020 and 9 June 2020

NB: Revenue means the total amount of money a business has earned from its normal business activities, before expenses are deducted.


NB: Operating less than a year or high growth? Must have 30% decline in revenue attributable to COVID-19 comparing the revenue against a previous month or 30days that gives the best estimation of the revenue decline related to COVID-19? I.e. March 2020 to January 2020.

4. Have you mitigated the financial impact? Examples include:

  • Drawing from your cash reserves (as appropriate)

  • Activating your business continuity plan

  • Making an insurance claim

  • Proactively engaging with your bank

  • Seeking advice and support

5. Have you retained the employees you are applying for the length of the subsidy?

6. Have you tried your hardest to pay staff at least 80% of their usual wages? If not, pay at least the rate of the subsidy (unless the usual wages are lower than the rate of the subsidy you can pay them their normal wages)

If you do not meet the criteria above, you may need to pay the wage subsidy back.


Remember to document all of the above and keep in your records.


If you need our support, please contact us here.

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