All three stages of the new Accredited Employer Work Visa (AEWV) are now live, with applications open for employer accreditation, job checks and work visas.
As of 3 August 2022, Immigration New Zealand (INZ) has received:
1. 8,415 employer accreditation applications since applications opened on 23 May. Over 90% of applications have been decided and all have been approved
2. 3,807 applications for the job check that opened on 20 June, equating to 25,462 jobs. Of those 1,179 job checks have been approved, equating to 8,868 jobs
3. 442 work visa applications have been received and seven work visas have been granted since applications opened on 4 July. Over 70% of the work visa applications received have been assessed and most are waiting on the applicant to provide their passports.
INZ has acknowledged that there have been some technical issues that have caused frustration but they have been working to identify and resolve the issues as quickly as possible.
Applying for the Job Check
A number of the job check applications assessed need further information from the employer before a decision can be made. INZ is contacting these employers to ask for the information required and provide an opportunity to resolve any other issues before they finalise their application.
INZ has identified some errors by customers in their job check applications, which are affecting its ability to process these applications within the 10-day timeframe.
Many of the actions identified relate to information missing from employment agreements, including:
1. minimum hours of work
2. the maximum number of hours worked before overtime provisions apply
3. a detailed description of the work to be performed.
INZ is also seeing job check applications that do not meet requirements because the job advertisement did not:
1. run for 14 days
2. include the salary range for the role.
This information is required to demonstrate applicants are meeting the AEWV requirements in order to avoid undue processing delays. It is also important that job checks are only submitted for current vacancies where jobs have been advertised and no suitable New Zealanders are available to do the job.
Introducing Live and Work New Zealand
Immigration New Zealand’s New Zealand Now website has helped attract and support the settlement of thousands of migrant workers, students, and investors for over a decade.
Now that the border has fully reopened, INZ has relaunched New Zealand Now as Live and Work New Zealand to better reflect it as an official Immigration New Zealand website.
INZ has also refreshed the content on the website with up-to-date information about migrating to, working, and living in New Zealand.
Student information has moved
Education New Zealand’s website is now the main source for overseas student information and is no longer found on the Live and Work New Zealand website.
Changes have been made to immigration instructions for the Community Organisation Refugee Sponsorship (CORS) programme, to clarify how refugee status is assessed under this category.
INZ has clarified how refugee status is assessed under the Community Organisation Refugee Sponsorship (CORS) programme. The main change is that INZ will now require an assessment of an applicant's refugee status by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). INZ will also consider an applicant's refugee status if they have been recognised as a refugee by another jurisdiction.
The amendments to Residence instructions are effective from 25 July 2022. INZ says the changes will ensure that only those who are genuinely in need of protection are able to benefit from the CORS programme.
Imagine you've always dreamed of moving to New Zealand, a country with stunning natural beauty, friendly people, and a great quality of life. You've done your research, and you're ready to take the plunge. But then you realize there's a lot you don't know about immigrating to New Zealand. How do you get started? Do you need a licensed advisor?
Don't worry, we're here to help. In this article, we'll walk you through the process of immigrating to New Zealand, and explain why it's important to have a licensed advisor by your side.
So let's get started. The first step is to figure out if you're eligible to immigrate to New Zealand. To do that, you'll need to meet specific criteria depending on the visa you want to apply for.
For example, the Skilled Migrant Category visa is for people with skills and qualifications in demand in New Zealand. To be eligible, you'll need to earn points based on your age, work experience, qualifications, and other factors. Another example is the Partner Category visa, which is for people married to or in a civil union with a New Zealand citizen or resident.
If you're unsure which visa you should apply for, or if you're eligible for more than one, a licensed immigration advisor can help you figure out the best option.
The next step is to start collecting the necessary documents. This includes things like your passport, birth certificate, and evidence of your English language proficiency. Once you have all the required documents, you can begin the online application process.
While the online application is convenient, it's important to note that a few key steps can trip you up if you're not careful. That's why it's so important to have a licensed advisor by your side. A licensed advisor will guide you through the process and ensure you don't make any mistakes that could jeopardize your application.
After you've submitted your application, the next step is to wait for a decision. While you are waiting for the decision, there would be several requests from your case officer or even the case officer would issue a Partially Prejudicial Information (PPI) letter, which is mainly about the facts affecting the decision of your case officer. So if ever your receive one, answering properly to this PPI letter is crucial for the successful outcome of your visa application. We have DIYers who submitted their applications themselves and then came to us to engage for their case when they received the PPI letters or were challenged by the immigration officer. For a case like this, we jump in to intervene to get some extra time to study your case and respond to the PPI letters properly and advocate your case to your case officers.
The processing time for visa applications can vary - depending on which immigration officer has been allocated to your case and whether the case officer has many cases to deal with or if the case officer is on holiday then whether each case has requests from the case officer or not. All these affect the processing time for your visa application.
For a temporary visa, your case officer will make the final decision, but for a resident visa, once the case officer has completed their assessment, the case needs to be passed to a senior immigration officer (technical advisor) for a quality check. During this cross check, the senior immigration officer will check from when you arrived in NZ for the first time until the moment your case is being assessed to ensure you did not break the visa condition and or any undeclared matters are found.
Having your licensed advisor representing you will be a great relief when you are unsure what is happening with your case. The licensed advisor should be able to communicate with your case officer or a senior immigration officer to request updates on your case. Sometimes, the licensed advisor can ask for your case to be processed with a priority.
So there you have it, a quick overview of the process of immigrating to New Zealand. While it may seem daunting at first, with the help of a licensed advisor, you'll be on your way to starting a new life in New Zealand before you know it.
So if you're dreaming of a new life in New Zealand, make sure you have a licensed immigration advisor by your side. They will have the knowledge and experience necessary to ensure your application is complete and correct, increasing your chances of having it approved. Don’t risk ruining your chances – talk to one of our advisers today.
New Zealand's border reopens
Immigration New Zealand (INZ) announced that the country's borders will be fully open for the first time since March 2020. Immigration New Zealand will now begin accepting visitors with visas and those on student visas again.
This is the first time that New Zealand's borders have been fully open since they shut in an effort to keep out Covid-19. The full reopening of the border is a welcome relief for many, who have been stuck outside of New Zealand for months. For others, it is a chance to finally reunite with loved ones who they have not seen for over two years. Either way, it is an exciting time for New Zealanders and those who have been hoping to visit the country.
The reopening of the border is a significant step towards returning New Zealand to normalcy.
Update on 2021 Resident Visa Category Immigration instructions
The New Zealand 2021 Resident Visa category has been closed as of 31 July 2022. All immigration instructions for this category have been revoked. This means that no new applications for this visa will be accepted and all current applications will be processed according to the new instructions.
If you are currently in the process of applying for this visa, you will need to submit your application under the new instructions. Applications lodged before 1 August 2022 will continue to be determined in accordance with the instructions that were in force when the application was made.
Amendment Circular 2022-43
Changes have been made to immigration instructions to return the RSE scheme to standard settings. The following changes include:
1. Removing references to border exceptions
2. Re-instating maximum stay durations of 7 months (and 9 months for citizens of Tuvalu and Kiribati who normally reside in those countries) in any 11-month period
3. Allowing RSE workers who were onshore between 1 April and 31 July 2022 (inclusive) to return to New Zealand for another season after spending 2 months outside of New Zealand.
The instruction changes within Amendment Circular 2022-43 are effective on and after 11:59 pm on 31 July 2022.
Amendment Circular 2022-42
Changes to Immigration instructions for Student Visa and Post-Study Work Visa Application
As announced on 11 May 2022, changes have been made to immigration instructions to amend funds requirements for student visa and post-study work visa applicants, including:
• an increase in the living costs required from NZ$15,000 per year for all students to NZ$20,000 per year for tertiary and non-compulsory education, and NZ$17,000 per year for compulsory education (years 1-13 at school) in U3.20 Sufficient funds for maintenance while in New Zealand,
• changes to U3.10 Tuition fees which confirm that applicants must provide evidence of full tuition fee payment and evidence of living costs for either one programme or one year of study, whichever is the shorter (if the student is undertaking a multi-year programme), and
• an amendment to WD2 Lodging an application under Post-Study work visa instructions and WD3.1 Determining and granting a Post-Study work visa increasing the minimum funds required for post-study work visa applications from NZ$4,200 to NZ$5,000.
References to the Education and Training Act 2020 and the Education (Pastoral Care of Tertiary and International Learners) Code of Practice 2021 throughout the Operational Manual have also been updated.
Amended immigration instructions are effective on and after 11:59 pm on 31 July 2022.
Amendment Circular 2022-41
Supporting amendments to Residence Instructions
Changes have been made to immigration instructions on Migrant Investment Categories, Residence Class Categories and Who may not apply for a Residence Class Visa.
BJ Migrant Investment Categories
A supporting note has been added to immigration instructions confirming that residence applications lodged before 28 July 2022 will continue to be determined in accordance with the instructions that were in force when the application was made.
BA2.1 Residence class categories
RA5 Who may not apply for a residence class visa
References to the Investor 1 and Investor 2 visa categories have been removed from immigration instructions to support the closure Read on for a summary of these and other key changes.
Amendment Circular 2022-41 contains updates to immigration instructions that:
1. Revoke all Migrant Investment (Investor 1 and Investor 2) resident visa instructions, and
2. Clarify that residence applications submitted prior to 28 July 2022 will continue to be assessed in accordance with the applicable immigration instructions (expressions of interest not drawn from the EOI Pool and unused invitations to apply are no longer valid), and
3. Remove references to Investor 1 and Investor 2 from immigration instructions.
The instruction changes within Amendment Circular 2022-41 are effective on and after 28 July 2022.
There have been changes to the immigration instructions for people working in roles on Tier 1 and Tier 2 Green Lists (Appendix 13 in the INZ Operational Manual) and those earning at least twice the median wage. The three new residence pathways are as below:
INZ has also been amended to allow independent contractors to apply for residence under the Green List Straight to Residence category. These changes come into effect on and after 5 September 2022.
Please note that these changes are subject to change and may be revised without notice. Check the INZ website for updates.
Do you think you are qualified for the newly introduced pathways? Our licensed advisors are here to help you. Book a consultation with us today to see how we can help you with your immigration journey.
Since the onset of the pandemic in 2020, Immigration New Zealand (INZ) has helped to protect New Zealand from COVID-19 and enable critical travel.
At 11:59 pm on 31 July (NZST) we reach the final steps of the Reconnecting strategy:
1.those outside New Zealand will be able to apply for student and visitor visas, and
2.the border will be reopened to travelers arriving by air and sea.
Every non-New Zealand or Australian citizen travelling to New Zealand needs a visa or New Zealand Electronic Authority (NZeTA) to enter the country.
From 11:59 pm on 31 July (NZST), applications for Visitor Visas will reopen.
Group visitor visa fees will increase:
1.Approved Destination Status (China) will be NZD $90 per person (previously NZD $45)
2.Other group visitor visa will be NZD $110 per person (previously NZD $65)
With an NZeTA you can travel to New Zealand without first applying for a visa if you are:
1.a cruise ship passenger,
2.travelling on a passport from a visa waiver country, or
3.a permanent resident of Australia
Student visa applications reopen from 11:59 pm 31 July 2022 (NZST) to support the rebuilding of a high-value international education sector.
From 11:59 pm on 31 July 2022, Immigration fees and levies for student visas will increase. The new costs for a student visa will be:
1.$375 for Band A (New Zealand)
2.$315 for Band B (Pacific)
3.$395 for Band C (rest of world)
The amount students need for living costs while in New Zealand will also increase to:
1.NZD $20,000 a year for tertiary, English language students and other non-compulsory education
2.NZD $17,000 a year for students in compulsory education (years 1-13 at a school)
3.NZD $5,000 for applicants for post-study work visa.
Applications online should be made between one and three months before intending to travel.
The maritime border will reopen to foreign-flagged vessels at 11:59 pm on 31 July 2022 (NZST).
Travellers on cruise ships must apply for an NZeTA.
Phasing out border exceptions
Most border exceptions will close at 11:59 pm on 31 July (NZST).
The full timeline for INZ’s transition back to standard visa processing was announced earlier this month.
2021 Resident Visa category closing
The Government created the 2021 Resident Visa to recognise the contribution migrants made during COVID-19. Among those eligible to apply are critical workers in longer-term roles who:
1.held a visa as a critical health worker or other critical worker on 29 September 2021, or
2.were granted a visa as a critical health worker or other critical worker after 29 September 2021.
The 2021 Resident Visa category closes at 11:59 pm on 31 July 2022 (NZST). We encourage those eligible to submit their applications before then.
COVID-19 restrictions still apply when travelling to New Zealand. Check the New Zealand COVID-19 website for up-to-date details on entry requirements.