Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some of the frequently asked questions we get relating to the dividend payout.

Q: How does the Trust dividend work?

A: The dividend is paid to all consumers on Unison’s electricity network in the Hawkes’s Bay district
as at 30 June 2020.

Q: What is the eligibility date?

A: This year the eligibility date has been set to 30 June 2020.

Q: Am I entitled to a dividend payment? Do I qualify for a payment?

A: All permanent metered supply points (ICP’s) connected to Unison’s Hawke’s Bay network and which are liable for a fixed daily charge as at 5pm, 30 June 2020 are entitled to a payment. There is a maximum of three payments for any one named consumer. Note: Builder’s temporary supplies, and other unmetered connections such as streetlights, telecommunications devices, and under-veranda lighting are excluded.

Q: How much will the dividend be?

A: This year the dividend is the same for all ICP’s (regardless of whether it is a commercial or a domestic installation) and is $230 after tax. This amount was decided by the HBPCT.

Q: How is the payment amount calculated?

A: The amount is calculated by the Trust from the dividend it receives as majority shareholder of Unison Networks Ltd. A dividend from Unison’s profits is paid to the Trust by Unison and most of this is passed on by the Trust to our beneficiaries. Also, as the population increases in the Trust District, the number of people receiving Entrust dividend also increases and this must be included in the calculations each year.

Q: I signed up for direct credit last year – do I need to re-register?

A: On Monday 27 July, you will receive an email asking you to confirm if the bank account details you provided last year are still correct. If everything is correct, you don’t need to do anything. If you have changed your bank account, please follow the prompt to update your details by
Wednesday 12 August.

Q: What happens if I don’t reconfirm my details?

A: Your payment will be made to the bank account you provided last year. If it bounces back, we will do our best to get in touch with you. If you haven’t received payment by Wednesday 2 September, please call on 0800 535 738.

Q: When will I receive my dividend payment?

A: Payments – both direct credit and cheque – will be made from Wednesday 19 August. Please be patient, however if you haven’t received payment by Wednesday 2 September, please call on 0800 535 738.

Q: Where do I find My ICP Number?

A: Your ICP Number is located on your power bill. The ICP is a long number (15 alpha/numeric). If you cannot find the ICP on your power bill, please contact your power retailer.

Q: How will I receive my payment?

A: The direct credit option remains in place again this year.

If you registered for direct credit last year, you will receive an email and/or text message on Monday 27 July asking you to confirm your bank account details are correct. If you don’t confirm your details, your payment will be made to the bank account you provided last year. If it bounces back, we will do our best to get in touch with you. If you haven’t received payment by Wednesday 2 September, please call on 0800 535 738.

From Monday 27 July all Hawke’s Bay power consumers that did not register for direct credit last year will be posted a 4-digit pin number and steps on how to register. This will allow you to go online, register your details and have your dividend paid directly to your bank account. If you provide your bank account details by Wednesday 12 August, you will receive your payment by direct credit from Wednesday 19 August.

If you do not supply your bank account details, you will receive your dividend payment by cheque. Cheques will be sent out from Wednesday 19 August and may take up to two weeks to arrive. The cheque will be made out to the name on your power account and posted to the address your electricity retailer sends your bill to.

Q: My dividend was to be direct credited, but the money isn't there yet. What do I do?

A: Make sure the bank account number shown on your payment advice is correct. If this is not correct, then we can identify whether there has been a returned payment and make a payment to the correct account. If it is correct, ask your bank if it is sitting in a UPI (unpaid items) account. Sometimes this happens if your bank couldn’t process the payment right away. [Assist beneficiary if the bank account was incorrect and the funds have been returned].

Q: I can’t bank my cheque because I don't have a bank account, or an account in the same name as the cheque. What do I do?

A: If you do not have a bank account, or if you are part of a group such as flatmates who do not have a bank account in the group’s names, you can return your cheque and have the cheque credited to your bank account. You may be required to provide some additional documentation.

Q: I have opted to receive a cheque, but my bank no longer receives cheques. What should I do?me name as the cheque. What do I do?

A: Please call the Trust on 0800 535 738 so that we you can arrange direct credit if your bank does not accept cheques.

Q: I have opted to receive a cheque, but my bank no longer receives cheques. What should I do?me name as the cheque. What do I do?

A: Please call the Trust on 0800 535 738 so that we you can arrange direct credit if your bank does not accept cheques.

Q: When I return the cheque and request a direct credit, how long will it take to direct credit? I do?me name as the cheque. What do I do?

A: We will action your request as quickly as possible, however it may take up to 5 working days.

Q: Can I change the name on the cheque?

A: Not unless the cheque is made out to the wrong person altogether. In this case, please call the Trust on 0800 535 738.  If the name on the cheque is yours but it’s not exactly correct, you will need to update those details with your electricity retailer for future dividends.

Q: What if I have moved?

A: If you have not placed a redirection order with NZ Post, your dividend communication will be returned to us. If you have moved to another property in our coverage area, we should be able to locate your forwarding address and re-send the dividend communication to your new address.

Alternatively, if you have moved recently and wish to advise us of your new address, please e-mail hbpct@linkmarketservices.com. This year the Trust has also sent communications by email, so we recommend checking the email address where your power bill is sent.

Q: What if I’m on pre-power (Glo-Bug etc)?

A: You will follow the same process as those who are not on pre-pay. All pre-pay beneficiaries – who did not sign up for direct credit last year – will be mailed a registration card from Monday 27 July with a four digit pin to enable them to register online at www.hbpct.co.nz/register.  Those who do not register for direct credit will receive a cheque. Pre-pay beneficiaries who registered for direct credit last year will be sent a text/email asking them to confirm their details by 12 August.

Q: I’m in a flatting situation, with multiple tenants – who receives the dividend?

A: The communication regarding the dividend will be sent to the person who the power account holder. It is up to the people responsible for the power account to decide how the payment is shared in this instance.

Q: I’m in a flatting situation, my landlord pays the power - who receives the dividend?

A: The dividend is applied to the account holder. It is up to the people responsible for the power account to decide how the payment is shared in this instance.

Q: What if I have more than one power account, e.g. house + pump + woolshed?

A: The payment will apply only to those accounts that normally have a fixed distribution charge, i.e. who’s identified as a primary network connection point. There is a maximum of three connections for which a payment is made.

Q: What if I have more than one power account, e.g. house + pump + woolshed?

A: The payment will apply only to those accounts that normally have a fixed distribution charge, i.e. who’s identified as a primary network connection point. There is a maximum of three connections for which a payment is made.

Q: Will I be eligible for future dividends?

A: That will be decided by the Trustees at the time.

Q: Why was a single qualification date chosen?

A: A single fixed date was chosen from which to apply the payment simply because any other option would be virtually impossible to administer, as all data relating to customer eligibility is provided by the electricity retailers.

Q: Does it matter when I joined Unison?

A: So long as your power was “on” (technical term being “energised”) as at 5pm, 30 June 2020 you are eligible for the dividend payment. All permanent metered supply points (ICP’s) attracting fixed daily charges as at 5pm, 30 June 2020 are entitled to the $230 dividend payment.
Note: Builder’s temporary supplies, and other unmetered connections such as streetlights, telecommunications devices, and under-veranda lighting etc. are excluded.

Q: Why is my dividend the same as everyone else? (Commercial customers)

A: Your trustees decided that the dividend payment would be the same for every consumer, regardless of size, spend or consumption.

Q: What happens if I don't have a bank account?

A: You will need to discuss this with a local bank as you will require a bank account to receive the dividend by direct credit or to be able to deposit your dividend cheque.

Q: Will my details be used for any other purposes?

A: Your details are held on file for shutdown notices, billing, and other operational purposes of the network company. Tax-related questions

Q: Do I have to pay tax on the dividend?

A: As required by the Inland Revenue, the Trust pays tax at the rate of 33% on the dividend. If you are on a lower tax rate you may be entitled to a refund of the tax paid on the dividend. We believe many beneficiaries are on a lower tax rate than 33% so you could be entitled to a tax refund on this payment if you file a tax return.

Q: Do I have to pay tax on the dividend?

A: As required by the Inland Revenue, the Trust pays tax at the rate of 33% on the dividend. If you are on a lower tax rate you may be entitled to a refund of the tax paid on the dividend. We believe many beneficiaries are on a lower tax rate than 33% so you could be entitled to a tax refund on this payment if you file a tax return.

Q: How much tax is paid by the Trust?

A: The Trust pays 33 cents of tax credits to every dividend payment. We believe many beneficiaries are on a lower tax rate than this so you could be entitled to a tax refund on this payment if you file a tax return.

Q: I lost my payment advice and tax certificate

A: A copy of the of the standard tax certificate is available online at hbpct.co.nz. A copy of the tax certificate for those with a RWT-exempt certificate is also available on hpbct.co.nz.

Q: What about people who are in a group and have to split up tax?

A: Because everyone has different tax rates, we are not able to provide calculations for the tax on a share of the dividend. You will need to ask your tax advisor or Inland Revenue. Visit www.ird.govt.nz or call Inland Revenue on 0800 227 774.

Q: I am RWT-exempt, what do I do?

A: If you have an IRD certificate of exemption from RWT, you can send a copy of that certificate back with your update form and your dividend will be paid without withholding tax being deducted.  If the dividend has already been paid, you will need to claim the tax back through your tax filing.