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KiwiSaver is a savings plan to help people set up for retirement. Members pay a percentage of their wage into the fund each pay cycle, and employers contribute a percentage as well.
The plan is voluntary, but new employees who are not already members are automatically enrolled and must opt out if they don’t want to participate.
Employers have certain obligations under law to set up KiwiSaver for their new employees, give their employees information about the program, and pay into the fund. Inland Revenue explains these obligations.
Every New Zealand citizen or permanent resident who starts a new job and is not already a member is automatically enrolled in the scheme, unless they are under 18 or over 65, temporary or casual staff, or subject to other exemptions. Inland Revenue has a list of exemptions for staff.
KiwiSaver members can take a savings suspension (formerly "contributions holiday") - a break from paying contributions into their KiwiSaver account.
Members can apply for a contributions holiday after they have been a member of KiwiSaver for 12 months. In some circumstances they can apply for an early savings suspension. A contributions holiday can last from 3 months to 5 years.
As an employer, you do not need to do anything if an employee chooses their own scheme provider. Your employee will contact the provider directly, and the provider will contact Inland Revenue.