Moving overseas if you get NZ Super or Veteran's Pension
If you decide to move overseas you may be able to keep getting some or all of your NZ Superannuation or Veteran's Pension.
It depends on:
- the agreement New Zealand has with your new country, and
- how long you've lived in NZ.
You must be receiving NZ Super or the Veteran's Pension in your own right — you can't do this if you're included in your partner's payments as a 'non-qualified partner'.
New Zealand has social security agreements with:
- Republic of Ireland
- United Kingdom.
It also has special agreements with 22 Pacific countries.
Moving to Australia (including Norfolk Island)
If you're moving to Australia, you might be able to get all or some of your NZ Super or Veteran's Pension.
Moving to a Pacific country
New Zealand has arrangements with 22 Pacific countries that mean you may be able to get all or some of your NZ Super or Veteran's Pension if you're moving to 1 of these countries.
Moving to the United Kingdom
Moving to Canada, Denmark, Greece, Guernsey, Jersey, Malta, the Netherlands or the Republic of Ireland
New Zealand has social security agreements with these 8 countries. The amount of NZ Super or Veteran's Pension you'll receive if you move to 1 of these countries depends on the agreement NZ has with them.
You need to check the agreement for the country you're moving to as they are all different. They do have some things in common:
- You can't get the 'single, living alone' rate — instead you'll get the 'single, sharing' rate, which is slightly less.
- You can't get any of the extra benefits from NZ, such as the Disability Allowance or Accommodation Supplement — but you might be able to get other assistance from the country you're moving to.
- If anything changes — such as your address, name or relationship — you need to let both Work and Income, and the appropriate agency in your new country know.
If you leave your new country for more than 26 weeks, you must let Work and Income know. Your NZ Super or Veteran's Pension stops, unless you're returning to NZ to live.
Moving elsewhere in the world
If you're moving to a country that NZ doesn't have a social security agreement with — such as China, the United States, Thailand, India or the Philippines — you can apply to have your NZ Super or Veteran's Pension paid to you. How much you'll get depends on how long you've lived in NZ.
You must apply at least 6 weeks before you leave New Zealand.
How much you'll get
This depends on how long you lived in New Zealand between the ages of 20 and 65. It's calculated by the number of months that you lived in NZ during that time — up to a maximum of 540 months (45 years).
For example, if you lived in NZ for 25 years — 300 months — you'll get 300/540ths of your NZ Super. If you lived in NZ for 45 years you'll get the full rate that you're entitled to. The rate depends on whether you have a partner or not and your living arrangements.
You can't get the 'single, living alone' rate if you're living outside of NZ — instead you'll receive the 'single, sharing' rate, which is slightly less.
You can choose whether your NZ Super or Veteran's Pension gets paid:
- every 4 weeks into an overseas bank account, or
- every 2 weeks into a New Zealand bank account.
Your first payment happens on the first payday after you leave NZ.
How to apply
Download and complete the Application for New Zealand Payment Overseas form. You'll also need to make an appointment with International Services at Work and Income.
Application for New Zealand Payment Overseas (PDF 99.4KB)
Freephone: 0800 777 227 (NZ only)
Phone: +64 4 978 1180
You'll need to take to the meeting:
- your passport
- your previous passport(s)
- another form of ID, such as your driver licence
- your tickets or itinerary
- your NZ or overseas bank account details.
Once you've moved
You must tell Work and Income if you:
- change your name, address or bank account
- decide to move to another country
- start or end a relationship
- alter your living situation — for example you start living with other people
- plan to travel in other countries for more than 26 weeks
- start receiving a social security pension from any country other than New Zealand.
There are online forms you can use to notify Work and Income about:
- overseas travel dates
- new contact details
- someone's death.
You can also call or email them.
Freephone: 1800 150 479 (from Australia only)
Phone: + 64 4 978 1180
Senior Services International
Ministry of Social Development
PO Box 27178
Work and Income send you a declaration every 6 or 12 months depending on your circumstances. The declaration is to check if anything has changed, such as your relationship status or your contact details. You must complete and return it.
Your NZ Super or Veteran's Pension stops if the client declaration isn't returned within 8 weeks and is cancelled if it's not returned within 16 weeks.
In this section
You can normally get some or all of your NZ Superannuation or Veteran's Pension if you move to a Pacific country to live.
You might get all or part of your NZ Superannuation or Veteran's Pension if you move to Australia to live. It depends on your individual situation.