Contents

Supplementary benefits

Child Disability Allowance

Costs covered

A Child Disability Allowance is a fortnightly payment made to the principal caregiver of a child who:

This allowance covers the costs of providing care for the child, rather than the direct costs arising from the child’s disability (which are covered by a Disability Allowance). Between 2010 and 2012, 14% of the children assisted by a Child Disability Allowance were also assisted by a Disability Allowance.

EligibilityTop

To be eligible for a Child Disability Allowance, the caregiver must be:

In addition, the child covered by the allowance must be:

The allowance is not means tested.

Recent administrative changesTop

From April 2007, Child Disability Allowance payments were no longer suspended if recipients did not return their annual review forms.

Since mid-2008, case manager decisions on eligibility for the Child Disability Allowance have been improved by:

Numbers of children assisted by a Child Disability AllowanceTop

The number of children assisted by a Child Disability Allowance decreased between 2009 and 2012

This decrease (see table CD.1) largely reflected the reduced use of the Child Disability Allowance by working families. This in turn reflected a combination of changes in economic conditions and the administrative reforms outlined above. These administrative reforms affected the number assisted by the allowance through:

table CD.1: Numbers of children assisted by a Child Disability Allowance

  Children assisted by a Child Disability Allowance1
2008 2009 2010 2011 2012
Total children assisted 43,185 45,767 43,883 39,253 36,894

Note

  1. The number of children recorded in SWIFTT as being assisted by a Child Disability Allowance at the end of June.

The number of grants of Child Disability Allowance decreased between 2009/2010 and 2011/2012

This decrease (see table CD.2) reflected at least in part the impact on the number of allowances granted of administrative changes introduced from July 2008.

table CD.2: Numbers of Child Disability Allowances granted

  Children for whom a Child Disability Allowance was granted1
2007/2008 2008/2009 2009/2010 2010/2011 2011/2012
Total allowances granted 11,027 10,900 8,941 7,112 6,702

Note

  1. The number of successful applications for a Child Disability Allowance recorded in SWIFTT during years ended June.

A relatively small number of children aged under 18 were assisted by a Child Disability Allowance

In 2012, an estimated 3.4% of children aged under 18 were assisted by an allowance, down from 4.0% in 2010. Children aged 5–13 were more likely than younger or older children to be assisted by an allowance.

More information about children assisted by a Child Disability Allowance

Reduced use by working families drove the decrease in allowances received

The decreased number of Child Disability Allowances received largely reflected a decrease in the use of the allowance by working families (see table CD.3).

Three in five of the children assisted by a Child Disability Allowance were cared for by working families

Between 2010 and 2012, 61% of the children assisted by a Child Disability Allowance were in working families (see table CD.3). Another 29% of these children had caregivers receiving a Domestic Purposes Benefit.

table CD.3: Financial assistance paid to caregivers of children assisted by a Child Disability Allowance

Financial assistance paid to caregivers at the end of June Children assisted by a Child Disability Allowance1
2008 2009 2010 2011 2012
Unemployment Benefits 250 661 746 649 510
Domestic Purposes Benefits 11,950 13,212 12,956 11,390 10,528
Sickness Benefits 809 970 940 828 749
Invalid’s Benefit 2,219 2,197 1,928 1,636 1,492
Other main benefits2 418 418 322 275 272
New Zealand Superannuation or
Veteran’s Pension
232 284 287 262 291
None of the above assistance3 27,307 28,025 26,704 24,213 23,052
Total 43,185 45,767 43,883 39,253 36,894

Notes

  1. The number of children recorded in SWIFTT as being assisted by a Child Disability Allowance at the end of June.
  2. Comprises Unemployment Benefit – Training, Unemployment Benefit – Hardship – Training, Unemployment Benefit – Student Hardship, Independent Youth Benefit, Widow’s Benefit and Emergency Benefit.
  3. Includes clients receiving other supplementary benefits, and clients entitled to a Child Disability Allowance through receiving an Unsupported Child’s Benefit or an Orphan’s Benefit.

Four in five of the children assisted by a Child Disability Allowance were aged under 14

Between 2010 and 2012, 81% of the children assisted by a Child Disability Allowance were aged under 14. This included 33% who were aged 5–9, and 28% aged 10–13.

About one in two of the children for whom an allowance was granted were cared for by working families

Between 2009/2010 and 2011/2012, 52% of the children for whom a Child Disability Allowance was granted were in working families (see table CD.4). Another 35% had caregivers receiving a Domestic Purposes Benefit.

table CD.4: Financial assistance paid to caregivers of children for whom a Child Disability Allowance
was granted

Financial assistance paid when Child Disability Allowance granted Children for whom a Child Disability Allowance was granted1
2007/2008 2008/2009 2009/2010 2010/2011 2011/2012
Unemployment Benefits 133 214 267 226 218
Domestic Purposes Benefits 3,750 3,735 3,163 2,526 2,375
Sickness Benefits 366 387 277 243 233
Invalid’s Benefit 496 469 368 332 251
Other main benefits2 157 137 111 82 92
New Zealand Superannuation or
Veteran’s Pension
58 67 48 51 51
None of the above assistance3 6,067 5,891 4,707 3,652 3,482
Total 11,027 10,900 8,941 7,112 6,702

Notes

  1. The number of successful applications for a Child Disability Allowance recorded in SWIFTT during years ended June.
  2. Comprises Unemployment Benefit – Training, Unemployment Benefit – Hardship – Training, Unemployment Benefit – Student Hardship, Independent Youth Benefit, Widow’s Benefit and Emergency Benefit.
  3. Includes clients receiving other supplementary benefits, and clients entitled to a Child Disability Allowance through receiving an Unsupported Child’s Benefit or an Orphan’s Benefit.