Inland Revenue Department (New Zealand)
The Inland Revenue or Inland Revenue Department (IRD; Māori: Te Tari Taake) is the public service department of New Zealand charged with advising the government on tax policy, collecting and disbursing payments for social support programmes, and collecting tax.
|Te Tari Taake|
|Headquarters||55 Featherston Street|
|Annual budget||Total budget for 2019/20|
The Inland Revenue's Māori name is an older spelling of Te Tari Tāke, meaning 'The Department [of] Tax'. Despite long vowels in Māori now being expressed with macrons over the vowel rather than double vowels, the department continues to use the double vowel due to the resemblance of the word tāke to the English word take.
Inland Revenue started out as the Land Tax Department in 1878. The department was renamed the Land and Income Tax Department in 1892 with the central office set up in Wellington.
Only in 1952, when the organisation joined with the Stamp Duties Department, was the organisation known as the Inland Revenue Department.
In 1995, a Rewrite Advisory Panel was established to consider and advise on issues arising during the rewriting of the income tax legislation, as part of New Zealand tax reform arising from the Working Party on the Reorganisation of the Income Tax Act 1976. The panel was disestablished in 2014 at the completion of the tax reform.
In 2018–19, Inland Revenue collected $79.5 billion in tax revenue, which was more than 80% of the money the government used to pay for services that all New Zealanders benefited from, including social security and welfare, health and education. Other services included law and order, housing and community development, environmental protection, defence, transport, and heritage, culture and recreation.
Inland Revenue is undergoing business transformation activities to make tax and social benefits simpler to receive and pay. As at 2019, these changes have saved $60 million in administrative costs, added $90 million in additional revenue through improved compliance and reduced effort for small to medium-sized businesses.
The department also administers the following social support programmes:
- Working for Families (tax credits)
- Paid Parental Leave (payment)
- Child Support (collection and payment)
- Student Loan debt (collection)
Acts and regulations administered
- Child Support Act 1991
- Estate and Gift Duties Act 1968
- Gaming Duties Act 1971
- Goods and Services Tax Act 1985
- Income Tax Act 2007
- Stamp and Cheque Duties Act 1971
- Student Loan Scheme Act 1992
- Tax Administration Act 1994
- Taxation Review Authorities Act 1994
- Unclaimed Money Act 1971
- parts of the KiwiSaver Act 2006
- parts of the Parental Leave and Employment Protection (Paid Parental Leave) Act 1987
- In October 2019, an Inland Revenue employee was awarded the State Services Commissioner’s Commendation for Frontline Excellence for her investigation into the suspected multimillion-dollar income suppression by a chain of restaurants. This investigation led to one of the most significant prosecution cases undertaken by Inland Revenue in the past decade.
- In 2019 Inland Revenue was awarded a Distinguished Service Award from Multicultural New Zealand in recognition of its support of community members in the aftermath of the Christchurch attacks.
- Inland Revenue, along with The Treasury, were finalists at the Spirit of Service Awards 2019 for their partnership work to enhance tax policy through kaitiakitanga (stewardship), manaakitanga (care), ōhanga (prosperity) and whanaungatanga (relationships).
- In 2018, the IPANZ Prime Minister's Award for Public Sector Excellence and Achieving Collective Impact was awarded to the Ministry of Education, Tertiary Education Commission, Ministry of Social Development and Inland Revenue for delivering fees-free tertiary education for the 2018 school year. The Regulatory Systems award went to the Ministry of Justice, Department of Internal Affairs, Reserve Bank of New Zealand, Financial Markets Authority, New Zealand Customs, and Inland Revenue for Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing Terrorism.
- At the 2018 New Zealand CIO Awards, Inland Revenue were finalists in the Business Transformation through Digital and ICT category.
In previous years, Inland Revenue has been criticised for what are seen as heavy handed tactics when forcing payment from debtors, specifically those owing tax arrears and child support payments, and for charging excessive penalties on debts which result in debtors falling into a cycle whereby they are unable to pay the growing amounts they owe. The approach of Inland Revenue has been implicated in a number of suicides and other acts of self-harm.
The number of people threatening self-harm in phone calls to Inland Revenue has trended down consistently over the last three years. Between January and August 2019, 168 people contacted Inland Revenue threatening self-harm. That compares to 292 for the 2018 calendar year; 306 for 2017; and 334 for 2016.
List of Ministers
The Minister of Revenue is the political office of Minister for the department of Inland Revenue. Since October 2017, the position has been held by Stuart Nash.
|No.||Name||Portrait||Term of Office||Prime Minister|
|As Minister in Charge of Land and Income Tax Department|
|1||Arthur Myers||28 March 1912||10 July 1912||Mackenzie|
|2||James Allen||10 July 1912||12 August 1915||Massey|
|3||Joseph Ward||12 August 1915||21 August 1919|
|(2)||James Allen||4 September 1919||28 April 1920|
|4||William Massey†||12 May 1920||10 May 1925|
|5||William Nosworthy||14 May 1925||24 May 1926||Bell|
|6||William Downie Stewart Jr||24 May 1926||10 December 1928|
|(3)||Joseph Ward||10 December 1928||28 May 1930||Ward|
|7||George Forbes||28 May 1930||22 September 1931||Forbes|
|(6)||William Downie Stewart Jr||22 September 1931||28 January 1933|
|8||Gordon Coates||28 January 1933||6 December 1935|
|9||Walter Nash||6 December 1935||13 December 1949||Savage|
|10||Charles Bowden||13 December 1949||1 November 1952||Holland|
|As Minister in Charge of the Inland Revenue Department|
|(10)||Charles Bowden||1 November 1952||26 November 1954||Holland|
|11||Jack Watts||26 November 1954||12 December 1957|
|12||Arnold Nordmeyer||12 December 1957||12 December 1960||Nash|
|13||Harry Lake†||12 December 1960||20 December 1963||Holyoake|
|14||Peter Wilkinson||12 December 1975||8 March 1977||Muldoon|
|15||Hugh Templeton||8 March 1977||11 December 1981|
|16||John Falloon||11 December 1981||26 July 1984|
|17||Roger Douglas||26 July 1984||24 August 1987||Lange|
|As Minister of Revenue|
|18||Trevor de Cleene||24 August 1987||15 December 1988||Lange|
|19||David Caygill||15 December 1988||9 February 1990|
|20||Peter Neilson||9 February 1990||2 November 1990|
|21||Wyatt Creech||2 November 1990||1 March 1996||Bolger|
|22||Peter Dunne||1 March 1996||16 December 1996|
|23||Bill Birch||1 March 1996||31 August 1998|
|24||Max Bradford||31 August 1998||1 February 1999|
|25||Bill English||1 February 1999||22 June 1999|
|(23)||Bill Birch||22 June 1999||10 December 1999|
|26||Michael Cullen||10 December 1999||17 October 2005||Clark|
|(22)||Peter Dunne||17 October 2005||7 June 2013|
|27||Todd McClay||7 June 2013||14 December 2015|
|28||Michael Woodhouse||14 December 2015||20 December 2016|
|29||Judith Collins||20 December 2016||26 October 2017|
|30||Stuart Nash||26 October 2017||Incumbent||Ardern|
- "Annual Report 2016" (PDF). Inland Revenue Department. 2016. Retrieved 18 February 2017.
- "Total Appropriations for Each Vote". Budget 2019. New Zealand Treasury. Retrieved 8 June 2019.
- Goldsmith, Paul (13 July 2012). "Taxes - Tax, ideology and international comparisons". Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand. Retrieved 14 June 2013.
- "Plain English tax panel disestablished" (Press release). 2 December 2014. Retrieved 18 February 2017.
- "IRD Annual Report 2019".
- "Nature and scope of IR functions from Statement of Intent 2011-14". Retrieved 6 September 2011.
- "Public Service Day Awards 2019".
- "Spirit Service Awards 2019".
- "IPANZ Public Sector Excellence Awards".
- "NZ CIO Awards 2018".