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Information Sharing with New Zealand Customs Service (Customs)

29 May 2019.

The Ministry of Social Development has a formal agreement with the NZ Customs Service to share arrivals and departures information to assess eligibility for benefits and payments. It also allows MSD to dispense with the notice period required by s96Q of the Privacy Act before suspending Specified Payments so that clients who travel overseas don’t incur a debt.

This agreement enables MSD and Customs to share information for the purposes of:

  • verifying the entitlement or eligibility of any Beneficiary travelling overseas to receive a Benefit;
  • verifying the amount of any Benefit to which any Beneficiary travelling overseas is or was entitled or for which they are or were eligible;
  • to avoid the overpayment of benefits and debts to the Crown being incurred by Beneficiaries travelling overseas; and
  • enabling the recovery of any debt due to the Crown in respect of any Benefit.

People can refer to the Privacy Commissioner if personal information relating to them is disclosed in breach of the Privacy Act or authorisations provided for in the Social Security Act 2018, Customs and Excise Act 2018 or this AISA.

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