Wage Subsidy Extention

15 May 2020

Many of you will have seen that the Government has announced an extension to the wage subsidy scheme.  The Wage Subsidy Extension will be available from 10 June 2020 until 1 September 2020 so employers can keep paying their employees.

Loss of revenue criteria changed 5 June

The Government announced a change in criteria from a 50% revenue drop to a 40% revenue drop.

This means you must have had a revenue loss of at least 40% for a continuous 30 day period. This period needs to be in the 40 days before you apply (but no earlier than 10 May 2020) and must be compared to the closest period last year.

For example if you apply for the Wage Subsidy Extension on 10 June 2020 the 30 day period will be 10th May through to 9th June as you can not go further back than 10 May 2020.  If you apply for the Wage Subsidy Extension on 30th June you could go back 40 days to the 22nd May.

Other key points

  • If you're applying for an employee you've already applied for the Wage Subsidy for, you can't apply for them until their 12 week Wage Subsidy has finished.
  • It will cover 8 weeks per employee from the date you submit your application.
  • It will be paid to you as a lump sum at the same weekly rate as the Wage Subsidy.
  • If you've given an employee notice of redundancy before you apply, you can't apply for those employees unless the redundancy notice is withdrawn.
  • You'll need to agree to certain obligations, such as to:
    • pass the subsidy on to your employees
    • retain your employees for the duration of the subsidy
    • do your best to pay your employees at least 80% of their normal pay
    • take active steps to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on your business.


If your employee's usual wages are less than the subsidy, you must pay them their usual wages. Any difference should be used for the wages of other affected staff.

If there are no other employees to use the subsidy for, then the remaining amount should be paid back.

Business.govt.nz have released a tool to help you determine your eligibility for the Wage Subsidy Extension which you can access using the link below

Wage Subsidy Eligibility Tool


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