New Zealand immigration adviser in Melbourne

Seekvisa provides professional New Zealand Immigration services from our offices in Sydney and Melbourne. Our registered and licensed New Zealand migration advisers are specialised in all kinds of New Zealand visas including:

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With its clean green natural image and natural beauty, New Zealand is often rated as one of the best tourist destinations. New Zealand has a low-density population but is rich in its multicultural identity and combines a diverse mix of cultural and historical influences including Maori, European, Pacific and Asian cultures.

Over the last 30 years New Zealand’s economy has gone from being highly regulated to one of the least regulated and most free market based economies in the world and accordingly it has become an attractive country for people to migrate to and to invest and do business in.

Employing Foreign Workers in New Zealand

New Zealand has a wide range of visa options available ranging from visas for young people wanting to undertake a working holiday to those wanting to run their own businesses eventually leading to residence. New Zealand’s immigration policies are aimed at developing and supporting economic growth by tapping into international skills, talent and investment while not displacing New Zealanders from employment opportunities or hindering improvements to wages or working conditions.

Immigration New Zealand is an agency under the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment responsible for overseeing the employment of foreign workers in New Zealand. The agency manages migration to New Zealand and issues travel visas.

Immigration New Zealand uses the Australian and New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupations (ANZSCO) to review the skill levels of jobs and the qualifications and/or experience needed to work in defined jobs. Jobs listed under ANZSCO are classified into five (5) skills depending on the range and complexity of the set of tasks.

Types of Work Visas in New Zealand

All foreign nationals who intend to work and reside in New Zealand are required to obtain a Work Visa. There are three (3) types of common Work Visas in New Zealand:

  1. Essential Skills Work Visa
  2. Specific Purpose or Event Work Visa
  3. Talent (Accredited Employer) Work Visa

Essential Skills Work Visa

The Essential Skills Work Visa policy is designed for those who have been offered permanent or fixed- term jobs in New Zealand to be employed by the New Zealand business.

As the person is to be employed locally in New Zealand, they must demonstrate that:

  • They are suitably qualified and/or experienced to undertake the role offered (the level and experience required are to be determined by ANZSCO);
  • There are no New Zealand citizens or permanent residents available to do the job offered;
  • The job offer is genuine, sustainable and full time (at least 30 hours per week);
  • The employer has previously complied with and will comply in the future with all relevant NZ employment and immigration laws and regulations;
  • They meet health requirements and are of good

Labour Market Test

Prior to offering a job to a migrant, a NZ employer must show that they have undertaken a labour market test and that there are no suitably qualified New Zealand citizens or Permanent Residents who can do the job.

A Labour Market Test is required for low or high-skilled occupations.

If the job is high-skilled, the following evidence must be submitted by the employer:

  • The text of job advertisement; and
  • Where and how long the job advertisement was
  • Evidence of the result of the recruitment drive

If the job is low-skilled, the following evidence must be submitted:

  • The text of job advertisement;
  • Where and how long the job advertisement was run;
  • Skills Match Report from Work and Income showing that there are no New Zealanders available and/or suitable for the

However, Labour Market Test is not required for the following scenario:

  • The work is in an occupation under the Essential Skills Demand List and the applicant has the qualifications and/or work experience listed for that occupation;
  • The employer is supporting an applicant who currently works in the sponsoring entity and has been invited to apply, or has submitted an application which remains undecided, under the Skilled Migrant Category based on their current

General Requirements of the Sponsoring Entity

  • Employer Supplementary Form;
  • Evidence of job advertisement;
  • Employment contract;
  • Job description;
  • Assessment of candidates;
  • Work and income advice that includes Skills Match Report (if applicable)

General Requirements of the Applicant

  • Application form;
  • Passport;
  • Two (2) recent photographs (if hard copy is filed);
  • Police clearance certificate (if required)
  • Medical certificate, if required;
  • Job offer;
  • Original or certified copies of relevant qualifications;
  • Evidence of previous relevant work experience;
  • Occupational registration, if required;
  • Proof of residency in the country of application (if lodging from 3rd country);

Validity of Essential Skills Work Visa

Visas under this Category are issued in line with the intended length of the employment for up to three

(3) years each time. Applicants who are in roles classified by ANZSCO as Level 1 and who earn above the threshold may be granted an initial visa up to a maximum of five (5) years if they have not previously had a five (5) year work visa. However, ultimately it is at the discretion of Immigration Officers how long they issue visas for. The less skilled the job is the shorter the duration of the visa will be.

Essential Skills Work Visa Renewal

To extend stay in New Zealand, applicants are required to re-apply for an Essential Skills Work Visa. There is no limit to the number of Essential Skills Work Visa that can be applied for, or the total time an applicant can spend in New Zealand on Essential Skills Work Visas. However, questions may arise as to why the employer has not trained a New Zealand citizen/permanent resident in the role.

Processing Time

Two (2) to four (4) weeks depending on the country of lodgement of application and whether the application is filed on line or by hard copy.

Family members of Essential Skills visa holders

Spouses can apply for visitor or work visas in line with the duration of the principal applicant’s visa. Spouses will also generally qualify for work visas if they have lived with the principal applicant in a genuine and stable relationship for at least 12 months prior to the application and if the principal applicant is coming to work for at least 6 months.

Applicants wishing to bring their children with them must be able to meet a specific income threshold (NZD36,850.44) which must be maintained throughout their stay.

Please note, however, that there are currently proposals in place to change this aspect of New Zealand Immigration Policy. These changes are due come into effect in August 2017. Under these new proposals, it will be more difficult for family to accompany the main applicant for a work visa. Please refer to end of this Guide for additional information.

General requirements for spouse

Application forms Passport

2 passport size photographs Marriage certificate (if applicable) Police Certificate (if required); Medical reports (if required);

Relationship evidence to show that couple is living at same address and that the relationship is genuine and stable.

For children

Application form Full birth certificate Original passport

2 passport size photographs Medical reports (if applicable)

Government Processing Fees

Processing fees payable will depend on whether the application is lodged online or if it is filed by hard copy. Application fees will also depend on the passport that the applicant holds and where the application is lodged. Each family member included in an application pays a separate application fee.

Specific Purpose or Event Work Visa

This category is for those people who are coming to New Zealand to complete a specific purpose or event as described in the Instructions. They must meet the specific requirements of this Category depending on the specific purpose they are coming to undertake. Visas issued under this category are granted in line with the length of their objective and there are maximum visa durations depending on the applicant’s specific purpose or event.

A specific purpose or event may include any of the following circumstances:

  • Senior or specialist business persons on short-term secondments, who receive job offers in a New Zealand company or New Zealand subsidiary of an overseas company;
  • Business people seconded to New Zealand to take up a position in a multinational company as an executive or senior manager or specialist;
  • Applicants searching for investment opportunities;
  • Any other specific purpose or event for a specific time-period that need specialist skills, expertise or attributes likely to benefit New Zealand without taking opportunities away from New Zealanders.

Employer obligations towards these visa holders is restricted to ensure that the remuneration and any benefits, that were confirmed in writing, in support of the application are maintained during the visa holder’s stay in New Zealand. The applicant must be suitably qualified to undertake the work they are coming to do. Once they have achieved their specific purpose they must return to their home country. The applicant must also meet health and character requirements.

Labour Market Test Not applicable.

General Requirements of the Sponsoring Entity

  • Description of the specific purpose or event for which the person is coming to NZ General Requirements of the Applicant
  • Application form;
  • Passport;
  • Two (2) recent photographs or digital photograph if lodging on line
  • Police clearance certificate, if required;
  • Medical certificate, if required;
  • Support letter from home entity;
  • Support letter from New Zealand entity
  • Original or certified copies of education qualifications;
  • Evidence of previous work experience;
  • Occupational registration, if required;
  • Proof of residency at the country of application;
  • Application fee/s

Validity of Specific Purpose or Event Work Visa

Validity of Specific Purpose or Event Work Visa is tied to the length of the job contract. First time application is usually granted between three (3) to 12 months depending on the purpose or event.

Processing Time

Two (2) to four (4) weeks depending on the country of application.

Processing fees payable will depend on whether the application is lodged on line or if it is filed by hard copy. Application fees will also depend on the passport that the applicant holds and where the application is lodged. Each family member included in an application pays a separate application fee.

Talent (Accredited Employers) Work Visa 

The Talent (Accredited Employers) Work Visa is applicable for jobs offered by employers accredited by Immigration New Zealand. Providing the visa holder remains in employment (or with another Accredited Employer) for at least 24 months, and that the business continues to maintain their Accredited Employer status, then the applicant can lodge an application for residence in New Zealand.

To be eligible, the following requirements must be met by applicants:

  • An offer of employment from the New Zealand accredited employer is for at least 24 months;
  • Job offered is full time (minimum of 30 hours per week);
  • Minimum salary offered is NZD 55,000;
  • Maximum age of 55-years old;
  • Full medical and police

General Requirements of the Sponsoring Entity

  • Employer Supplementary Form;
  • Employment contract;
  • Job description;

General Requirements of the Applicant

  • Application form;
  • Passport;
  • Two (2) recent photographs or digital photograph if filed online
  • Medical certificate;
  • Police clearance;
  • Job offer;
  • Original or certified copies of relevant qualifications;
  • Evidence of relevant work experience;
  • Occupational registration, if required;
  • Proof of residency at the country of

Validity of Talent (Accredited Employers) Work Visa 24 months.

Processing Time

Two (2) to four (4) weeks depending on the country of application.

General Process Overview

Steps Type of Application Authorities Location Estimated Timeline at the Authorities
Step 1 Work Visa (Specific

Purpose and Essential Skills)

Immigration New

Zealand or Visa Application Centre

In/outside NZ 55 to 86 days
Step 2 Medical and X ray reports (if required) List of Approved Panel doctors on INZ website will indicate where to attend both in and outside NZ As per location provided on Panel doctors list in INZ website 1 – 2 weeks
Step 3 Police report (if required) As per information on INZ website for obtaining police

reports

As per location provided on INZ website Depending on the country of application

Business Traveler

Business visitors to New Zealand are required to obtain a Business Visitor Visa prior arriving in New Zealand. However, if an applicant is from a visa waiver country such as Singapore, Hong Kong or United States, the visa can be obtained on arrival.

Allowable activities under Business Visitor Visa:
  • Carry out an official trade mission recognized by the New Zealand Government;
  • Sell goods and services in New Zealand;
  • Purchase of goods and services;
  • Negotiate or discuss the set-up, expansion or wind-up of a business in New Zealand;
  • Carry out any business with the authorized representatives of an overseas company, body or person.

Business visitors may travel to New Zealand for a total of three (3) months each year. Travel to New Zealand must not be for the purpose of work.

General Process Overview of Business Visitor Visa Application

To apply for a Business Visitor Visa, applicants must submit applications to the New Zealand Embassy or at the authorized Visa Application Centre in the country of residence.

General requirements of the Sponsoring Entity

  • Letter from home-country employer stating job position, length of employment, salary and leave approval dates granted;
  • Invitation letter from New Zealand entity.

General requirements of the Applicant

  • Application form;
  • Two (2) recent photographs;
  • Passport;
  • Proof of residency in the country of application;
  • Flight itinerary;
  • Proof of temporary accommodation in New Zealand;
  • Bank statement for the last three (3)

RECENT CHANGES – December 2018

Changes to Immigration fees and levies

Most New Zealand Immigration fees and levies have increased. This fee increase includes the Essential Skills Work Visa, Specific Purpose Work Visa, Skilled Migrant Category, Working Holiday Visa, Visitor and Student Visas. As there has been an increase of up to 50% on most visa categories sponsors may want to be prepared for the extra costs involved.  New fees and levies have taken effect from 5 November 2018.

 

Skilled Migrant and Essential Skills visas — changes to remuneration thresholds

The Essential Skills work visa and Skilled Migrant Category resident visa remuneration thresholds have been updated as part of Immigration New Zealand’s annual review. The new thresholds are based on the New Zealand median salary and wage rate of $25 per hour (up 2.9% from last year), equivalent to $52,000 per annum for a 40-hour per week job. These changes will come into effect from 26 November 2018. This will affect all applicants applying for work visas under Essential Skills Category and for residence under the Skilled Migrant Category

Who will be affected?

  • All applicants applying for work visas under Essential Skills Category and for residence under the Skilled Migrant Category.

Impact:

From 26 November 2018 the thresholds will be as follows for:

  1. Essential Skills Work Visas:
  • Mid-skilled employment in an occupation at ANZSCO 1 – 3 will be $21.25 per hour or the equivalent salary.
  • Higher-skilled employment in any occupation (including those at ANZSCO 4 – 5) will be $37.50 per hour or equivalent salary.
  • Lower skilled employment in an occupation at ANZSCO 1 -3 will be $37.49 per hour or below or the equivalent salary.
  • Lower skilled employment in an occupation at ANZSCO 4-5 will be $21.24 per hour or below or the equivalent salary

Compliance

Every employer commits an offence against the Immigration Act 2009 if they allow any person to work in their service knowing that the person is not entitled under the Act to do that work – the penalty for this offence is a fine not exceeding NZD50,000

Every employer also commits an offence against the Immigration Act if they allow any person to work in their service (without knowledge) – the penalty for this offence is a fine not exceeding NZD10,000

An employer convicted of exploiting an employee who is in their employ unlawfully may be guilty of an offence in certain defined circumstances – the penalty for any such offences renders the employer liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 7 years, a fine not exceeding NZD100,000 or both.

Breaching employment standards

From 1 April 2017, employers that have incurred a penalty for a breach of employment standards will face a set stand-down period preventing them from recruiting migrant labour for six months, one year, 18 months or two years, depending on the severity of the breach.

Employment standards related penalties extend from formal infringement notices issued by the Labour Inspectorate (following a Labour Inspectorate Investigation) through to penalties issued by the Employment Relations Authority or the Employment Court, or banning order issued by the Employment Court.

Employers issued with penalties as a result of private actions taken by employees either through the Employment Relations Authority or the Employment Court are also included.

Employers who receive an employment standards penalty will be included on a list provided to INZ by the Labour Inspectorate.

Nadia Zdielnik

MBA (KNTEU) Grad Dip in Migration Law & Practice (Griffith University)
MAcc Charles Sturt University

Australian Registered Migration Agent 1569520
New Zealand Licensed Immigration Adviser 201800814

Having successfully completed her own immigration journey, Nadia has a first-hand experience going through this tortuous and highly sensitive process.

Her personal success and ambitious character have lead her to embracing the Australian convoluted system of the immigration law and starting her own career with a goal to help more migrants like her to fulfill their Australian dream.

Nadia is a quick-thinker with unconventional problem-solving skills. She understands all nuances of the immigration process and is able to cater to her clients unique needs, ensuring stress-free experience and positive outcome for all.

Nadia specialises in skilled temporary, permanent visas and employer sponsored visas applications. If you are an employer who needs an expert to manage your global mobility needs, Nadia has the depth and breadth of expertise to provide your business with immigration support to ensure a global mobility program that operates smoothly and efficiently. Nadia is also fluent in Russian and Ukrainian.