Financial support for foreign nationals in NZ

Help is available for eligible foreign nationals who are experiencing serious financial hardship due to COVID-19.

Emergency benefit if you have a temporary visa

If you have a temporary visa and cannot support yourself or return home due to COVID-19, you may be able to get an Emergency Benefit.

The Emergency Benefit is a weekly payment to help with your basic living costs.

Who can get it

You may be able to get the Emergency Benefit if you:

  • are looking for work, or cannot work for some reason
  • have a current temporary New Zealand visa that is not sponsored, for example a visitor visa, student visa or work visa
  • are in financial hardship with no other means of support — money to buy a flight home does not count as support
  • are taking all reasonable steps to find other means of support, for example looking for work; consular assistance; support from family, friends and organisations in NZ or overseas or arranging to return home as soon as you can
  • have a valid passport
  • have a New Zealand bank account
  • have an Inland Revenue (IRD) number.

You can apply for the Emergency Benefit from 1 December 2020 to 28 February 2021.

Find out if you can get the Emergency Benefit, and how to apply (external link)

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