COVID-19 Leave Payment

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UPDATE 27/03/2020: The Government has made modifications to the wage subsidy scheme to ensure people don’t lose their jobs during the national lockdown.

"We are folding the previous sick leave scheme into this scheme to prevent double-dipping. The original sick leave scheme was designed when few people were in self-isolation, and it is no longer fit for purpose. We are working on arrangements for those in essential work who require sick leave due to COVID-19."

The following information is only relevant to employers who have received the Leave Payment prior to the government announcement.

 

The New Zealand Government has announced wage and leave subsidies for employers and employees affected by COVID-19. Please see the MBIE and Work and Income websites for additional information regarding these subsidies:

MBIE - COVID-19: Information for Businesses

Work and Income - COVID-19 Employer Support 

 

The COVID-19 leave payment is available to support people financially if they meet the following criteria:

  • need to self-isolate (as determined by the Ministry of Health Guidelines).

  • cannot work because they are sick with COVID-19

  • cannot work because they are caring for dependents who are required to self-isolate or who are sick with COVID-19.

The payment will be as follows:

  • $585.80 per week for a full-time worker

  • $350 per week for a part-time worker

All of New Zealand is on lockdown starting 26 March 2020 and many people are unable to work.  The Leave Payment will only be applied to people who are able to work through the lockdown period, or who are required to work for essential services,  but cannot work because of Covid-19 illness or self-isolation requirements,  or people who are required to self-isolate because they have recently arrived in New Zealand.  

 

Set up Pay Codes

Please contact FlexiTime Support  and we will add the COVID-19 Leave Payment pay codes to your account.  

 

Annual Leave Accrual

If the employee is usually paid based on their time entries and they are receiving the Leave Payment, edit their employee record and select their Leave tab.  Set their Accrue Leave Based On to Normal Hours and enter their regular hours per week.  If the employment agreement does not specify a work pattern you should discuss this with the employee in good faith.    

This will ensure that the employee continues to accrue annual leave while they are receiving the Leave Payment. 

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Add Leave to the Employee's Pay

Add the appropriate COVID-19 Leave Payment pay code to the employee's pay,  and set the Quantity to the number of weeks to be paid. 

Check if the employee has any other earnings, allowances or deductions in their pay and adjust if necessary. 

If the employee is usually paid based on their time entries,  check the Work Days in the pay and make sure it includes the days of COVID-19 Leave.

 

There are three different situations where this COVID-19 Leave Payment pay code can be used in a pay -

1. The employee has some time worked during the pay period and the Leave Payment makes up the remaining period.

Add the COVID-19 Leave Payment pay code to the employee's pay and include the regular pay line for hours worked. If the employee is salaried modify the Salary line to reduce the gross amount by the COVID-19 Leave Payment.

2. The Leave Payment covers the entire period.

Add the COVID-19 Leave Payment pay code to the pay. Remove any other earnings lines in the pay.

3. The payment for hours worked or salary and Leave Payment fall short of the employee's regular pay and it needs to be topped up with another leave type such as Sick Leave or Annual Leave.

Add the COVID-19 Leave Payment pay code to the pay. Add the leave pay code used to top up the pay e.g. Sick Leave. Determine the gross earnings amount for this leave pay line by subtracting the COVID-19 Leave Payment amount (e.g. $585.80) from the regular pay the employee would receive for the pay period.

This amount should be then divided by the daily rate being used for this leave type to calculate the number of days of leave being used to top up the amount. Enter this number of days on the leave pay code line.

 

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