I think my parent nees care, what do I do?

The Aged Care Process

Step Six:
Who pays for my parent's care?

Your parent may be eligible for a Residential Care Subsidy – a government subsidy that pays for the cost of care. If your parent is not eligible, they will have to pay for care out of their own income and assets. People who pay for themselves are called private paying residents.

Residential Care Subsidy

Your parent will need to have their income and assets tested to find out if they are under the eligibility threshold for the Residential Care Subsidy. If they are eligible for a subsidy, they will be responsible for the cost of their care until their subsidy payments begin.

Click here to see the income and asset thresholds

How much will my parent have to pay towards their care if they are eligible?

If your parent is eligible for the Residential Care Subsidy, the government will pay part of their care. Your parent will pay the rest out of their superannuation. Your parent will have $34.81 left over each week from superannuation after they have paid for their care. They will receive a $246.91 annual clothing allowance. Your parent will pay this amount for any level of care, including hospital and dementia care.

How to Apply

The DHB assessor can give your parent the application forms which are available below. Send the needs assessment certificate with the application. Do not send a full copy of the needs assessment. Make copies of the application and related documents.

Send the forms as soon as possible. Send even if your parent does not have all the documents they need or they cannot complete the forms in full.

Call the Residential Subsidy Unit at WINZ on 0800 999 727 if you and your parent need assistance.

A DHB assessor will give you a form called the ‘Residential Care Subsidy
Financial Means Assessment Application’ to complete. If you do not receive this form request one from your assessor or phone the Residential Subsidy Unit on
0800 999 727.

Find out more information about the Residential Care Subsidy on the Work and Income website

Private Paying

If your parent does not qualify for a Residential Care Subsidy, they will have to pay their own fees. They will continue to receive New Zealand Superannuation.

The government limits how much your parent will have to pay towards their care. The limit – called the Maximum Contribution – varies by region. For example, in Christchurch, rest home residents do not have to pay more than $1,213.10 per week as at 1 August 2021. The limit may change each year. The limit is the same for every level of care, including hospital and dementia care.

Find the rate for your region on the Ministry of Health website

Residential Care Loan

Your parent may be eligible for a Residential Care Loan if they have assets over the threshold, but no money to pay for their care. This is an interest free loan, secured over the borrower’s home.

The asset limits for eligibility are generally:

Find out more information about the Residential Care Loan

Step Seven: How do we choose the right rest home?

Step Five: What happens after my parent is told they need care?