Payment rates and processing times for COVID-19 Wage Subsidy

Full-time and part-time payment rates, and application processing timeframes for the Wage Subsidy.


You can no longer apply for the Wage Subsidy.

You can still apply for the Leave Support Scheme if you have staff who can’t work because of COVID-19.

If you've already applied, we'll continue to process your application and let you know the outcome.

  • Payment rates

    The subsidy will be paid at a flat rate of:

    • $585.80 for people working 20 hours or more per week (full-time rate)
    • $350.00 for people working less than 20 hours per week (part-time rate).

    The subsidy is paid as a lump sum and covers 12 weeks per employee from the date you submit your application.

    Hours fluctuate

    If you work variable hours (or your employee does), you can use an average to work out what rate to apply for.

    Use the average hours worked each week:

    • over the last 12 months, or
    • over the period of time you (or they) have been employed (if it's less than 12 months).

    If the average hours are:

    • 20 or more, apply for the full-time rate
    • less than 20, apply for the part-time rate.
  • Processing timeframes

    We're working to pay the COVID-19 Wage Subsidy as quickly as we can.

    We need to check the information you've given us is the same as what's held by Inland Revenue. If it isn't, there could be a delay.

    We cannot give you information about the status of your application over the phone. We'll be in touch as soon as we can.

    If your application's approved

    Payment should be made into an account within 2 business days of processing.

    We'll text or email you once the payment has been made. Your bank will use a specific reference - MSD COVID19C

    If you haven't received payment in your account, it may be because we don't have the right bank account number for you. If this is the case, the money will be returned to us and we'll call you.

    If your application's declined

    We'll email you to let you know.

    It could be declined because:

    • the application was completed by an employee (not the employer)
    • you applied using the wrong application form, or
    • the details you gave us don't match those held by Inland Revenue (IR).

    If you think your details don't match those held with IR, you can check them with IR and apply again with the correct details.

    Otherwise, if you don't agree with our decision to decline your application, your email will tell you how you can get this reviewed.

    If you are a state sector organisation and your application for the Wage Subsidy has been declined, you'll need to contact your monitoring agency to discuss this.