This note is not part of the order, but is intended to indicate its general effect.
This order, which comes into force on 1 April 2013, increases a range of benefits, allowances, asset limits, superannuation entitlements, etc. The increases reflect both mandatory adjustments and some additional discretionary increases. Where an annual CPI increase is required, it reflects the increase of 0.61% in the New Zealand Consumers Price Index from the December 2011 quarter to the December 2012 quarter, calculated for all quarters using the CPI All Groups excluding cigarettes and other tobacco products.
Annual CPI increases are required under section 61HA of the Social Security Act 1964 for the following benefits: widows', orphans' and unsupported childs', invalids', unemployment, sickness, domestic purposes, child disability, disability, youth payments and young parent payments, related emergency benefits, and the hospital rate. These increases are set out in Part 1 of Schedule 1.
Annual CPI increases are also required, under section 15 of the New Zealand Superannuation and Retirement Income Act 2001, to superannuation entitlements. Section 16 of that Act requires that those increases may be more than the CPI amount in certain cases. The total of the increases required by both sections 15 and 16 is set out in Part 2 of Schedule 1.
The discretionary increases made under section 61H of the Social Security Act 1964 are to the funeral grant payable under that Act (clause 3), and schedules that set out the maximum amount that a blind beneficiary may earn, and various assets limits. The increases are set out in Part 1 of Schedule 2. Increases to superannuation entitlements, which build on the increases set out in Part 2 of Schedule 1, are also made, in order to implement the Government's commitment to ensure that the net married couple rate of New Zealand superannuation is set at 66% of the net average wage. These increases are set out in Part 2 of Schedule 2. The rates of New Zealand superannuation that are amended in all cases are the gross rates, but the increase has been calculated in relation to the net rate in each case.