Pensions, Entitlements and Reimbursements
There are a number of ways that Veterans' Affairs is able to support veterans financially.
The Disablement Pension is available to veterans who are affected by a disablement caused by service-related injury, illness or condition. This pension may be granted on a permanent or temporary basis. If a veteran is granted a temporary Disablement Pension, they will be entitled to rehabilitation support and services.
The War Disablement Pension
The War Disablement Pension is a compensatory payment made to veterans for the impact any disability which is found to be related to their service. It is a lifetime payment and is tax-free.
Weekly Income Compensation
Weekly Income Compensation is an income support payment available to veterans who are unable to work full-time as a consequence of injury or illness, whether service-related or not. Veterans receiving Weekly Income Compensation are entitled to rehabilitation support and services.
The Veteran's Pension
The Veteran’s Pension is an alternative to New Zealand Superannuation for qualifying veterans. The administration of the Veteran’s Pension is closely aligned to that of New Zealand Superannuation. Consequently, the Ministry of Social Development administers the Veteran’s Pension under the delegation of the Secretary for War Pensions/Head of Veterans’ Affairs.
Retirement Lump Sum Payment
The Retirement Lump Sum is a one-off payment to recognise the difficulty veterans on longer-term income support have in saving for their retirement.
Terminal Pension or Lump Sum Payment
The Terminal Pension is paid to those veterans who have a terminal service-related condition and is the maximum rate payable of the Disablement Pension(equivalent to the maximum rate of War Disablement Pension).
The Terminal Lump Sum Payment is paid to a veteran with a terminal service-related condition who elects to suspend their pension payments and receive a one off lump sum payment.
The Children’s Pension provides financial support to the children of veterans either affected by significant service-related impairment or whose death was due to qualifying service
Children’s bursaries are available for veteran’s children who are studying full time at a secondary school or at least part time at a tertiary institution in New Zealand.Tertiary institutions include a college of education, polytechnic, specialist college, university or wananga
The Dependant’s Pension provides financial support to the dependants of veterans who are either affected by significant service-related impairment or whose death was due to qualifying service.
Surviving Spouse or Partner Pension
The Surviving Spouse or Partner Pension provides financial support to the spouse or partner of veterans either affected by significant service-related impairment or whose death was due to qualifying service.
Payment to former POWs of Japanese
The Government has available a one off ex-gratia payment of $30,000 payable to New Zealanders, both civilian and military, who were held prisoner by the Japanese during World War II. If an ex-prisoner of war has died, the surviving spouse may receive payment. Contact us for information.
Medical assistance for veterans and their families
Fully funded health care is available to veterans who are on a War Disablement Pension for disabilities that are attributable to, or aggravated by, the veteran's service. This covers GP visits, specialist visits, prescription costs, private hospital care if the need is urgent and there is a waiting list in public hospitals, treatment from a variety of providers including acupuncture and osteopathy, and it extends to appliances or equipment needed to overcome disability and enhance quality of life. Other forms of treatment may be accepted but are considered on a case-by-case basis.
The Veteran's Pension automatically grants entitlement to a Community Services Card for a veteran and partner. This card provides for lower doctors' fees and prescription costs for conditions not related to service.
Most recently the government announced new plans to provide special assistance to veteran's children who suffer from spina bifida or cleft lip or palate. The government also recognised the need to fund specialist advice, such as genetic counselling, should veteran's children choose to seek it.
Veterans’ Affairs can pay or contribute to your treatment if you have a service-related injury, illness or condition. This applies whether you are living in New Zealand or overseas. Veterans’ Affairs will also work with you to prepare a treatment plan if you are currently receiving a Temporary Disablement Pension.
Veterans’ Affairs is not responsible for paying or contributing to your treatment if it is being funded elsewhere by the Defence Force, the public health system, or ACC.
Medical or Treatment related Travel Costs
Veterans’ Affairs will pay or contribute to your medical or treatment related travel costs if you have to have:
treatment for an accepted service-related injury, illness or condition; or
a medical assessment required by Veteran Affairs to determine your entitlement; or
a medical assessment required by the Review Officer, Veterans’ Service Review Panel or the Veterans’ Entitlements Appeal Board for a review or appeal against a decision about your entitlement.
Veterans’ Affairs may pay all or part of the expenses of the funeral and burial or cremation of a veteran whose death is due to qualifying service. This includes veterans living overseas.
If the veteran’s death was not due to qualifying service, Veterans’ Affairs may also pay all or part of funeral expenses.
Other concessions and allowances
Other concessions, allowances and reimbursements are available to veterans. These include: funeral grants, attendant care allowances, clothing allowances, travel allowances and concessions, gallantry award payments, Victoria Cross annuity, war bursaries, and subsidised car loans. It is also of note that there is nothing to stop a veteran from accessing social security benefits outside of the Veterans' Support Act 2014, should the veteran qualify. There also a number of supplementary war service gratuities.
Motor Vehicle Grant
If you have service-related severe or total lower body mobility impairment you may be entitled to a Motor Vehicle Grant to contribute towards the cost of a motor vehicle for your personal transport.
Aids and Appliances
For the purposes of medical treatment, an aid or appliance may be provided to support you with the effective management of your illness, injury or condition. For example, a peritoneal dialysis machine may be provided to support you to manage your chronic kidney condition.
For the purposes of social rehabilitation, an aid or appliance may be necessary to assist you with undertaking the activities of daily living. For example, an electric can-opener may be provided for a wrist injury or a shower chair for an injury sustained to the lower body.
Overseas veterans living in New Zealand
Although veterans who have service for allied countries who live in New Zealand are not eligible for assistance under the War Pensions Act, Veterans’ Affairs offers various forms of assistance in liaising between the veteran and their country of service. If you have service with an allied country you can contact them directly yourself by clicking on the appropriate link below, or contacting us.
- Australia – www.dva.gov.au (external link)
- UK – www.veterans-uk.info (external link)
- Canada – www.vac-acc.gc.ca (external link)
- USA – www.va.gov (external link)