ISSC glossary

A glossary to help you understand words, acronyms and phrases commonly used throughout the process of obtaining support for sexual abuse and assault.

On this page

    Claim terminology


    Accident Compensation Corporation, the Crown Entity that administers the Accident Compensation Act 2001 (The Act). 

    Assisted recovery

    Clients are transitioned to Assisted Recovery once their needs have been stabilised. This is for clients who need some support to manage their recovery. Recovery Assistants (ACC staff who work in Assisted Recovery) work as a team to support the client and will check on their progress at key milestones.  

    Case conference

    Case conferencing is a means of updating ACC on client progress against the Wellbeing Plan. The provider, client, and ACC collectively discuss progress and your ongoing needs. 


    The name given to an application made by the client (or made by someone on behalf of the client) under ACC legislation for cover and/or a specified entitlement (support) for a personal injury. 


    To provide long-term treatment and support on any claim, ACC must be able to accept cover for an injury or injuries on that claim. For sensitive claims cover, ACC must be able to determine if there are mental or physical injuries present that have been caused by sexual abuse events. 


    This refers to permission a client gives ACC so they can collect their information to help determine whether to accept a claim and, if the claim is accepted, what services and/or financial compensation may be provided. The client’s consent must be obtained before any information can be collected or disclosed. 

    Date of injury

    The date of injury for a sensitive claim is the date that you first sought treatment for a mental injury known to be caused by the effects of the sexual abuse/assault. This date definition is set out in section 36(1) of the Accident Compensation Act 2001. The date that any treatment is provided, and that treatment or counselling can be accepted in retrospect to have been provided for a mental injury due to the underlying sexual abuse, even if a schedule 3 event was not disclosed at that time. This includes disclosure to or treatment from a counsellor or nurse at the school where the client attends/attended. 

    Date of incapacity

    The term “Date of Incapacity” is referring to the date, when due to your personal injury, you are restricted or prevented (mentally or physically) from being able to perform your employment activities.


    When ACC makes a decision not to provide cover or supports under a claim, cover and/or entitlements are formally declined. This decision is issued in writing with review rights. 

    Early Planning

    Four hours of sessions with a therapist used to Identify your current needs and determine the most appropriate services to address those needs. 




    Also called supports.

    Represent the supports ACC can offer, including:

    • treatment
    • rehabilitation, both vocational and social
    • financial assistance, including weekly compensation, permanent injury compensation and loss of potential earnings. 

    You may qualify for these because of your covered injury and when your claim was lodged. 

    Getting started

    Two hours of sessions with a therapist to help you get to know your therapist and to determine what type of provider could best meet your needs.

    Incapacity assessment 

    An incapacity assessment determines the impact of the mental injury on your capacity to work in their pre-injury role or to commence work in roles deemed suitable by reason of experience, education or training, or any combination of these. This assessment is used to inform vocational rehabilitation or training and for determining weekly compensation where clients are unable to work due to their injury. This is usually completed after a supported assessment, but in some cases, it can be done at the same time if clinically appropriate and if the Assessor is approved to deliver the service. 


    Integrated Services for Sensitive Claims is ACC’s contract for providing services to survivors of sexual abuse and assault. 

    Maintain wellbeing

    Four sessions of therapy funded by ACC per annum for three years to support on-going wellbeing and reduce the impact of mental injury. 

    Mental injury

    When supported assessment occurs, a provider will diagnose any clinically significant psychological conditions they consider were due to the sexual abuse. Once ACC grants this cover, we call this a ‘mental injury.’ Clinically significant means that there is distress or disturbance in cognitive, emotional or behavioural functioning accompanied by impairment in social, occupational or other important activities. Together, such difficulties would usually meet the criteria for one or more mental disorder diagnoses.


    Online portal service where you can check your personal details, apply for entitlements, supports and reimbursement for travel and pharmaceuticals. Contact us to see if you can register for this. 

    Ordinarily resident

    To qualify for cover under the Act, the event or events must have occurred in New Zealand, or if they occurred outside of New Zealand the client must have been an ‘ordinarily resident’ at the time. This requires the client to have not permanently emigrated or been outside of New Zealand for more than 6 months in the year prior to the event. 

    Partnered recovery

    Partnered recovery is for clients who need long-term support. A highly-skilled case owner at ACC engages with the client on a one-to-one basis and supports them to manage their injury or recovery. 


    The term ACC uses to describe the period from when a client lodges a claim to when ACC issues a decision on whether to accept or decline the claim.

    Recovery partner 

    A recovery partner is an ACC staff member who works in one of our 9 Partnered Mental Injury sites who will work with you, your whānau, and providers in a proactive flexible manner.  

    Rongoā Māori

    Clients with an accepted ISSC claim can access Rongoā Māori traditional Māori healing by approaching their ACC recovery partner or assisted recovery staff member for approval. This is managed outside of the ISSC and is funded separately. We do not refer for this service. Instead, clients or their lead provider should identify which Rongoā practitioner they would like to seek care from in their request to us.

    Using rongoā Māori services

    Schedule 3

    The relevant section of the Act that identifies which criminal acts, per the Crimes Act 1961, such as grooming, sexual abuse and sexual assault, are eligible for cover consideration. 

    Sensitive claim

    The term we use to refer to a mental injury claim caused by a criminal act that is outlined in schedule 3 such as grooming, sexual abuse and sexual assault crimes.  

    Supported assessment

    If a therapist recommends longer-term therapy for a client, the client will need to undergo a Supported Assessment with a qualified assessor to determine cover for a mental injury caused by sexual abuse. During the supported assessment period, we will provide 10 sessions of therapy and 5-10 sessions with the qualified assessor.  

    Support to wellbeing

    Once the claim is accepted, a personalised treatment plan will be developed, and the client will receive up to 48 hours of therapy approved to use every twelve months. This stage of therapy is called 'support to wellbeing'. 

    Support to wellbeing short term 

    Provides short-term intervention (eight hours) as identified by the client to support their safety and wellbeing and to support client to self-manage by completion of this service. 


    Therapy consultations using Zoom or Microsoft Teams rather than face-to-face sessions. Your therapist must consider this appropriate to undertake and the client must consent to having therapy this way. 


    A term used to refer to the person providing your therapy, which may be a counsellor, psychotherapist psychologist or, in some cases, a psychiatrist. 


    Suppliers may choose to have a waitlist if they can’t accommodate everyone who requests their services. You will be advised by the supplier if you have been added to a waitlist and the estimated wait time. 

    Supports and entitlements terminology

    Cultural support and advice

    Acknowledging the cultural diversity of Aotearoa New Zealand and the importance of culture in the delivery of and effective engagement in therapy, cultural support is used to connect therapists with cultural experts, such as kaumatua or community elders, who can support that therapist to work in a culturally appropriate way with their client. The removal of cultural barriers will be different for different people and may include facilitating access to culturally-relevant social services and supports, facilitating connectivity to cultural community networks, addressing the culturally specific spiritual or holistic aspects of healing. 

    Family or whānau support

    This is used to support a client’s recovery by providing early education and support to whānau about the effects of sexual assault and abuse. Whānau support may also include strategies to deal with behavioural or emotional issues of the client and coping strategies to ensure the stability of the home environment. 

    Loss of potential earnings (LOPE)

    This weekly paid financial entitlement is similar to weekly compensation but is for clients who are now over age 18 but whose abuse occurred prior to turning 18 years of age, and whose injuries are preventing them from engaging in the workforce or in training. ACC must be able to determine that the client is not engaged in full-time study, does not earn more than the minimum earner rate, and has been unable to work for at least six months due to their injury. This support is paid whilst the client actively participates in treatment and rehabilitation.  

    Permanent injury compensation

    Previously called independence assessment/lump sum

    Clients who experience a permanent loss of functioning may be eligible to receive compensation for a permanent impairment. It is important that your condition must be stable and unlikely to change before you can undergo this assessment. These supports require other assessments outside of the ISSC service, and a member of a specialised Permanent Injury Compensation team will support you through this process if you request this entitlement.

    Social work

    The focus of this service is on managing or removing any social barriers that prevent or compromise a client’s ability to engage in their ISSC therapy. It may be used to advise clients and connect them into other services that are available in their communities, assist clients to access other services and introduce the client to other services and ensure effective engagement and reduce barriers to engaging in their therapy.

    Social rehabilitation

    These are additional supports to assist you with your recovery and manage your day-to-day life; they may include aids and appliances, attendant care, educational support, modifications to your home, training for independence, or transport assessment.


    The supports provided under ACC legislation, termed entitlements, include rehabilitation, comprising of treatment, rehabilitation (social rehabilitation and vocational rehabilitation), and financial compensation (weekly compensation, loss of potential earnings, and permanent injury compensation). 

    Vocational rehabilitation

    Can include assistance such as workplace assessments to assess the demand of your pre-injury role and programmes supporting you back to work or to find employment. Providers that may be involved in your vocational rehabilitation may be a physiotherapist, medical practitioner, registered nurse, social worker, career practitioner, vocational counsellor, and recruitment consultants. 

    Weekly compensation

    We’ll pay up to 80% of your income as weekly compensation if you’re unable to work or do your usual duties because of your covered injury claim. You must actively participate in treatment and rehabilitation as part of the weekly compensation process.

    Last published: 6 March 2024