Financial support if someone has died

When someone close to you dies from an injury that we cover, we may be able to give you financial support. We can help with funeral costs, one-off payments and loss of income.

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    How to apply for financial help after a death

    You can apply whenever you feel comfortable, there’s no time limit. Anyone can fill in the form for you, eg a friend, family member or the funeral director. One of the following people needs to sign the application:

    • spouse or partner
    • next of kin
    • executor of the will.

    To apply, fill in the ACC21 form. If you can’t complete the form, provide as many details as you can. Drop this at your local ACC branch, or send it by post or email.

    ACC21 Advice of accidental death

    Send us your application

    If you need help applying

    Call us if you need any help or advice to fill out the form. We can arrange for someone to help and give you any information you may need.

    Contact us

    We’ll call you to help you through the process

    When we get your application, we'll assign you a case owner. They’ll call you or your chosen contact person and talk you through the rest of the process.

    Choose a contact person

    The ACC21 form gives you the choice to have someone else deal with us on your behalf. This may be:

    • a friend
    • a family member
    • your social worker
    • a minister or priest
    • a senior member of your community
    • the deceased’s employer.

    What defines a partner, child or dependant?

    Partner

    • The deceased’s husband or wife; or someone they were living with in the nature of marriage.
    • A partner may still get support if they were living apart because of work, health or imprisonment.

    Children

    • The deceased’s natural or adopted children, born up to a year after they’ve died.
    • Children the deceased lived with and cared for. Eg a child from a previous relationship or a foster child.

    Other dependants

    A disabled person who received financial support from the deceased.

    Help paying for the funeral

    We can pay a funeral grant of up to $6,151.77 towards funeral and memorial costs. This amount changes every year. We’ll base the amount we can help with on the date the person passed away. You won’t pay any tax on this.

    We can pay the funeral director. If you’ve already paid, we can pay you back.

    You can choose to have the funeral or memorial in New Zealand or overseas.

    Extra help for families of homicide victims

    Families of murder or manslaughter victims can get a top-up to the funeral grant. This is up to $10,000 in total for funeral or memorial costs.

    One-off payment for partners, children and other dependants

    The survivor’s grant is a one-off payment to the deceased's partner, children and dependants. We’ll pay:

    • $6,595.48 to the spouse or partner
    • $3,297.76 to each child under 18 or other dependants.

    If the child or dependant is under 16, this money will go to their parent or caregiver. These amounts may change depending on when they passed away. You won’t pay any tax on this.

    Financial help for children of the deceased

    If the deceased had children, you can get weekly payments to help with childcare. How much we pay depends on how many children under 14 are being cared for.

    We can only pay this when the child is in New Zealand. You won’t pay tax on these payments, but it may affect help you get from Work and Income New Zealand (WINZ).

    How long we’ll pay for childcare

    We’ll pay this for five years or until the child turns 14; whichever comes first. If the child has a disability, we can reassess to see if payments can continue for longer.

    Paying for loss of income

    If the deceased was earning an income when they died, you may be able to get compensation for the loss of their income to support the family.

    We pay 80% of the deceased's earnings. We’ll talk to you about how this money is divided between the partner, children and other dependants. If the child or dependant is under 16, the money will go to their parent or caregiver.

    Your New Zealand superannuation may affect your payments.

    How long we’ll pay compensation

    Partner

    We’ll keep making payments to a partner until either:

    • five years from the date payments started
    • the youngest child of the deceased in your care turns 18.

    Children

    When the child turns 18, we’ll stop making payments at the end of that year. If they’re in full-time study, we’ll keep making payments until they finish studying or turn 21.

    Other dependants

    We’ll pay other dependants until they earn more than the minimum wage for full time work.

    If you live overseas

    If someone lives overseas, they can still get these payments. They need to have a New Zealand bank account and Inland Revenue number.

    Where to get more help

    There are organisations who can give you more help if you need it:

    Victim support
    Skylight
    Work and Income New Zealand
    Citizen’s advice bureau

    Contact us

    If you have any problems or want to know more about how we can help, talk to your case owner, or contact us:

    Phone 0800 101 996  (Monday to Friday, 7am - 7pm)

    Send us your application

    If you live in Northland, Auckland, Waikato or Bay of Plenty:

    ACC Hamilton Service Centre 
    PO Box 952
    Hamilton 3240
    Fax 07 848 7091
    Email hamilton.accidentaldeath@acc.co.nz

    If you live in Taranaki, Manawatu-Whanganui, Hawke's Bay, Wellington or the South Island:

    ACC Dunedin Service Centre
    PO Box 408
    Dunedin 9054
    Free fax 0800 844 850
    Email dunedin.accidentaldeath@acc.co.nz

    Last published: 12/09/17