Which New Zealand Immigration Visa

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There are too many New Zealand visas to summarise on our website, so we have selected the following because they cover 95% of all new visa applications.

  • Most of our clients emigrate under Skilled Migrant Category (SMC).
  • We also assist investors and businesspeople to secure Investor 2 Residence Visas and Entrepreneur Work Visas (EWV).
  • NZ is a great place for education, and we assist students enrolling in high school and university, (including mature students) to obtain Student Visas.

Skilled Migrant Category Residence Visa (SMC)

The New Zealand Skilled Migrant Visa has always been one of the most popular ways for migrants to move to New Zealand. Highly skilled migrants who are able to apply and/or transfer their skills in New Zealand receive resident visas much faster than in any other visa category.

Many people wrongly confuse highly skilled with highly qualified. The country needs skilled workers, with sufficient experience, with or without degrees. Some of the most sought-after skills required are from the construction, engineering, finance, business, health, ICT, hospitality, tourism, science, and trade industries.

Additional points are allocated if applicants have done skilled work in New Zealand. They get 3 points for 3 years of work, 2 points for two years of work, and 1 point for 1 year of work.

Granting residency under the Skilled Migrant Category is good for the migrants and good for the NZ economy.

With the new simplified points system under the SMC, applicants must get at least 6 points from one of the following categories:

  • NZ Professional Registration: 6 points for 6 years of training or work experience; 5 points for 5 years of training or work experience; 4 points for 4 years of training or work experience, and 3 points for 3 years of training or work experience
  • Qualification: 6 points for a Ph.D.; 5 points for a Master’s Degree; 4 points for an Honours Degree or Post-grad Diploma, and 3 points for a Bachelor’s Degree
  • High Income: 6 points if you earn 3 x the median wage and 3 points if you earn 1.5 x the median wage. (Migrants earning 2 x the median wage already has a pathway to residence under the Highly Paid Residence Visa).

Fee Paying Student Visa

If you are from overseas, you can apply for a visa to study full-time in New Zealand for up to 4 years. You will need to pay the full cost of your course and enroll with an approved education provider. While you are here, you can enjoy New Zealand’s high-quality teaching standards and gain internationally recognised qualifications.

With This Visa You Can:

  • Study full-time, including schools and tertiary (university and colleges) education
  • Work part-time up to 20 hours a week while studying and full-time in the holidays, depending on your visa conditions
  • Live by yourself if you are above a certain age, otherwise you’ll need to come with your parent or legal guardian

Mature Students:

  • We have assisted mature students to enroll in degree, masters and PhD courses. Their partners usually obtain work visas for the same period as the course. Based on the partner’s work visa, their children are granted student or visitor visas for the same period as their parents and can attend school as domestic students.

Active Investor Plus Visa

This new type of visa replaces the Investor 1&2 category visa.

It requires a minimum of $5 million investment for direct investment.

The investor must invest over a three-year period and a minimum IELTS score is required. Please contact us for more details

Accredited Employer Work Visa (AEWV)


Step 1: A client accepts and signs service agreement with IML.

Step 2: The agreement will be forwarded to our Licensed Immigration Adviser (LIA), who will review client’s details, reconfirm point assessment result, and send out a welcome email. LIA will advise pathways for the client’s migration and request necessary documents. In general, clients have approximately 2-4 months to gather documents needed for successful visa submission.

Step 3: Once clients gather all necessary documents and have his/her travel date set, IML will start applying for visitor visa. This process generally takes up to 4 weeks.

Step 4: Once visitor visa is issued, clients will travel to New Zealand for interviews with prospective employers. In most cases, he/she should receive job offer within four weeks after the interview.

Step 5: Should clients opt for the Job Application Service; New Zealand Recruitment will apply for jobs on a client’s behalf. This process is done through SEEK and Workhere New Zealand platforms. This service is applicable 60 days prior to client’s departure to New Zealand and 30 days post departure.

Step 6: Once clients obtain job offer from an Accredited Employer, and Job Check has been completed, they will receive a token from the employer. A client and his/her family will undergo a medical examination (includes chest x-rays). Health check result will be submitted to Immigration New Zealand, who will take 20 days to evaluate and issue the visa. Any health concerns/problems could potentially delay INZ decision-making process.

Visitor Visa Approval Criteria

  • An applicant should already have his/her interviews lined up prior to departure to New Zealand
  • An applicant should have a confirmed itinerary (i.e., transport, accommodation booked)
  • An applicant should be in good health and character
  • An applicant should have sufficient funds while residing in New Zealand (we recommend $5000 per month)
  • An applicant should show commitment to return to South Africa, such as having assets and/or family there

Children under the age of 5 can receive a Visitor Visa for the duration of the main applicant’s

Work Visa, provided that a child is in good health. (this should be placed into the next section, bottom of this article)

Work Visa

Below is a summary of work visa and its processes. Please note that this is applicable to most, but not all applicants. Should you have any questions or concerns, please contact your Licensed Immigration Adviser.

The objectives of New Zealand Work Visa are:

  • To allow skilled workers from overseas to fill shortages where New Zealanders are not available to provide work
  • To give New Zealand employers access to global skills and knowledge
  • To complement New Zealand Government’s education, training, employment, and economic development policies
  • To ensure that the employment of non-New Zealand citizens and residents does not undermine the wages and conditions of New Zealand workers

Eligibility for Work Visa

  • An applicant (a skilled migrant) has an employment offer from an Accredited Employer
  • An applicant has a relationship with a work visa or resident visa holder, or a NZ citizen

*Please note that there is no points assessment system for work visa

Requirements for Accredited Work Visa; The applicant must be in good health and character. Health

  • i. A person is unlikely to be a threat to public health
  • ii. A person is unlikely to incur significant costs or demands on New Zealand Healthcare System during their period of intended stay in New Zealand; and
  • iii. If a person is under 21 years of age and applying for a student visa, he/she is unlikely to qualify for Ongoing Resourcing Schemes (ORS) funding during the period of intended stay in New Zealand; and
  • iv. A person is able to undertake the work or study in accordance to the type of visa and job they have been offered.

    Any person who meets below criteria is considered to be of bad characters.

  • i. A person has been convicted of any offence, for which he/she is sentenced to five years (or more) of imprisonment.
  • ii. Within the preceding 10 years, a person has been convicted of any offence and was sentenced to twelve months (or more) of imprisonment.
  • iii. A person is prohibited to entry New Zealand under Section 179 or 180 of the Immigration Act 2009; or
  • iv. A person is excluded from New Zealand under any enactment; or
  • v. A person has, at any time, been removed, excluded, or deported from another country.
    Offer of Employment

    For an offer of employment to be suitable for a work visa application it must:

  • Be from an Accredited Employer (to find out how employers can become accredited with New Zealand Immigration, please contact your LIA).
  • Require 30 hours (or more) of work per week
  • Offer salary at the market rate as appears on website careers.govt.nz
  • Indicate salary that meets New Zealand median wage of NZD $27.76 an hour unless it is on the exempt list
  • Contain job description and employment agreement, along with the job token

    Partners of a New Zealand work visa holder, resident visa holder, or citizen can apply for work visa based on relationship scheme. From December 2022 onwards, you can apply for a work visa if your partner’s occupation is on the Green List or your partner earns more than $115,000 per year. If not, you will apply for a visitor’s visa that is linked to your partner’s work visa and find work with an accredited employer and apply for a work visa for yourself. In such case, it does not have to be a full- time work. You and your partner should have a genuine, stable relationship, and must be living together for at least 3 months prior to applying for work visa.

With an EWV, you come to New Zealand to buy or set up your own business and work in the business for up to 3 years. At the end of this time period you may be able to apply for residence if all criteria are met.

You can include your partner and dependent children aged 19 and under in your visa application.

If your business is in the science or ICT sectors and shows a high level of innovation or export potential, INZ may consider waiving the NZ $100,000 capital investment requirement.

You will not be granted an Entrepreneur Work Visa if you’ve been made bankrupt or been involved in a business failure in the last 5 years or if you’ve been involved in any kind of business fraud or financial wrong doing.

To find out if you qualify for an EWV, please complete our Free Assessment.

Family Category - Parent Resident Visa

You may be able to move to New Zealand to join your adult New Zealand citizen or resident child. You will have to submit an Expression of Interest explaining how you’ll meet the requirements for tier one or tier two of the two-tiered system and be sponsored by your child.

If you are invited to apply for residence and your application is successful, you’ll be able to live, work and study in New Zealand indefinitely. You can include your partner in the residence application.

Grandparents and legal guardians may be able to apply for residence under this category.

If you have dependent children, you are not eligible for this visa.