Financial Support

Financial Support


Civil Defence payments

Extra financial support has been made available for people in these locations:  Hurunui, Kaikoura, Seddon and Ward.

Civil Defence payments can cover the following costs:

  • Payments if you’re hosting evacuees (private homes, marae or community centres).
  • Accommodation costs if you’ve been evacuated and are staying in tourist accommodation (motels, hotels or temporary rental accommodation).
  • Loss of livelihood (where you can’t work and have lost your income because of the earthquake).
  • Food, clothing and bedding.

You can call the Government Helpline 0800 779 997 to find out more about this.


Work and Income can provide financial assistance to help you pay employees while you work through the impact of the earthquakes.

Earthquake Support Subsidy

The Earthquake Support Subsidy is a subsidy to help sole traders and small businesses impacted by the 14 November 2016 earthquakes. It aims to help you retain your staff and continue to pay them while you transition back to business-as-usual.

  • It is paid for a maximum period of eight weeks and will be backdated from 14 November 2016.
  • It is paid at a rate of $500 gross per week for full-time employees, and $300 per week for part-time employees.
  • The employer is responsible for paying GST, ACC levies, PAYE and holiday pay, and any other employment related expenses in respect of the employee(s).

Payment will be made by lump sum for a period of up to four weeks.

Who can get the Earthquake Support Subsidy?

To be eligible for the subsidy, the following conditions must be met.

  • You can’t operate or are operating at a reduced capacity because of the earthquakes.
  • You have no other way to pay your employees, including insurance cover.
  • You’re located in the Kaikoura, Cheviot, Ward, Rotherham, Waiau, and Mount Lyford areas. (The subsidy is available in other geographic areas if you can provide evidence of earthquake related impact.)
  • You’re a sole trader or small business, with fewer than 20 employees.

It’s easy to apply

Just ring or call the Government Helpline on 0800 779 997. Your situation will be discussed and you’ll be told how to apply. You’ll need to have:

  • your business IRD number
  • your business bank account number
  • details of the staff you want the subsidy for (employees’ names, dates of birth, IRD numbers and their normal hours of work).

Payments are made directly to your business bank account.

You will be paid directly. You’re responsible for continuing to pay your employees.

Please call the Government Helpline on 0800 779 997 to find out more, or visit