There are several areas we can look at regarding funding and what is available to support a person to engage in all aspects of their lives despite the challenges related to their disability. For most this may begin with a needs assessment to determine which supports need to be in place for the person to be involved in their communities. Information about how to contact a Needs Assessment agency and what is involved in the process for a needs assessment in New Zealand can be found here.
For a general over-view of Funding, including Individualised Funding and places to contact for support, click here: Transition information for parents.
An invalids benefit can be received from 16 years of age regardless of whether the person with disability is at school or not. Forms for this can be obtained from your General Practitioner(GP), just ask the administrator at the practice. The forms needed are:
1/ Invalids Benefit Booklet. This includes forms for
- Invalids Benefit
- Accommodation Supplement
- Disability Allowance
- Other forms that will not apply to your young person
- So a parent or significant other person can fill in the forms for the young person and also administer the benefits on their behalf if necessary. If the GP practice does not have this form ask for one at Work and Income New Zealand (WINZ).
- The GP needs to fill out this form (2 pages), these should be available at the practice.
- Your young person also needs their own bank account. Organise it with the bank so that the money can be used or withdrawn on their behalf (for example using a cashflow card or internet banking).
- Phone Inland Revenue and get an IRD number before 16 years
- Any money, shares, etc in the young persons name will affect this benefit so if possible address this before applying.
- Fill in for your young person. This section does not require GP assistance
- Fill in as if your young person is a boarder in your house. Decide how much board you want to charge, we charge our young person $180.00 per week. $150 – $200 is what people seem to charge. If your young person is not left with very much money it will be topped up. Write a letter addressed to WINZ saying what the board money covers (sample letter). Once the benefit starts arrange a direct debit into your account.
- If this (Invalids Benefit) is your young persons only income they are classified as a low income earner and can apply for this as well. Save receipts for approximately 6-12 months (see this list for costs that can be claimed for). The GP needs to fill out this form (2 pages). Ask them to write down anything that may be needed now or in the future (for example GP and prescription costs, transport, incontinence products, extra clothing, extra electricity costs).
- WINZ scans all the receipts and works out a weekly amount to cover these items. If costs go up this can be reviewed at any time, just take new receipts and client number and have them scanned. Write a short explanation on any receipt that may not be obviously related to the young persons disability.
- A fact-sheet can be found here
- When filling this in the last few questions don’t seem to apply. Get the WINZ caseworker to help if this is the case.
- The Invalids Benefit cannot be paid unless this form has been filled out. In the space about work get the GP to tick the NEVER box (Q21).
- When the Invalids Benefit starts the “Child Disability Allowance” will automatically stop.
- When the current Community Services card expires a new one will not be automatically sent unless you phone the number on the card and advise of the change.
- If you do not want to receive the Invalids Benefit the Child Disability Allowance can be paid until 18 years. The GP needs to fill in a form for this to happen.
- If your GP can write a letter detailing the person’s disability and it’s impact on his/her life then this can be used instead of presenting several pieces of information.
- Ring general enquiries on 0800 559 009 and make an appointment up to 20 days before the young person turns 16 years of age.
More information can be found here