WORK TO RESIDENCE VISA
This part of immigration policy is designed to assist and facilitate the short term (and long term) employment of individuals with high levels of skill that are readily transferable to New Zealand, or individuals with particular skills sets that are sought after and needed by important New Zealand employers.
There are two main work to residence applications.
- TALENT (ACCREDITED EMPLOYER) WORK POLICY
- Certain employers in New Zealand are accredited. Accredited employers enjoy a position of trust with the New Zealand Government and are able to recruit their own employees who they deem necessary for the fulfilment of their business and financial objectives.
- In order for an applicant to obtain a work to residence visa the applicant must be paid a minimum base salary of $55,000.00 per annum and, among other things, satisfy health and character criteria usually applied to applications for New Zealand residence.
- On approval, a visa will be granted for a 30 month period, and following the applicant being employed in New Zealand for a period of two years for their accredited employer they will be eligible to apply for and obtain New Zealand residence under the residence from work scheme.
- An important point to note (as with the long term skill shortage talent visa below) is that in order for an individual to qualify for New Zealand residence after two years of employment, they must be less than 56 years of age when they submit their residence application.
- LONG TERM SKILLS SHORTAGE LIST
- If an applicant obtains a full time offer of employment in New Zealand in an area of absolute skill shortage the applicant will be granted a 30 month visa to allow the individual to be employed in that occupation in New Zealand.
- The difference in this policy, compared to the accredited employer scheme, is that if an individual is able to obtain an employment position in an area of absolute skill shortage, then the individual can be employed by any employer as long as the person is paid a base salary of a minimum of $55,000.00 per annum, and meets the requirements specified in the long term skill shortage list (minimum qualifications/experience).
- Like the accredited employer work to residence visa, it is also important to note that the individual must be less than 56 years of age when they submit their residence application.
HOW DO WORK TO RESIDENCE VISAS FIT WITHIN SMC POLICY?
- Many employees under the work to residence category (either accredited employer list or long term skill shortage list) are under the misunderstanding that in order for them to qualify for New Zealand residence they will be required to work for their New Zealand based employer for a period of two years.
- In fact, most individuals who travel to New Zealand on a work to residence visa actually also qualify for New Zealand residence under the SMC.
- While applicants can apply for a work to residence visa, once the applicant travels to New Zealand an application for New Zealand residence under the SMC should be lodged as soon as possible. This allows New Zealand residence to be granted to the individual, giving the right to reside in New Zealand indefinitely.