Are you considering immigrating to New Zealand? The process of obtaining a visa can be a daunting one, with numerous requirements that need to be met. In this article, we will guide you through the various visa options available and the requirements that must be met to be eligible for immigration to New Zealand.
To be eligible for immigration to New Zealand as a skilled migrant you must meet the basic visa requirements:
- You must be under 56 years of age;
- You, or you and your family, must meet all health, character, and English ability requirements; and
- You must be able to meet a pass mark of 100 points in the Points System to register an Expression of Interest.
What are the Visa Requirements?
To be eligible for immigration to New Zealand, you must meet the requirements for the specific visa you are applying for. The following are the general requirements that must be met for all types of visas:
1. Good Character
To be eligible for a New Zealand visa, you must have a clean criminal record. This means that you must not have been convicted of any crimes or have any pending charges against you.
The NZIS considers a person of good character to be one who does not pose a potential security risk and is unlikely to have served time in prison, been deported from any country or been involved in any criminal or dangerous activities.
2. Health Requirements
You, your partner, and any dependent children under 17 years of age must complete a health declaration in the Expression of Interest stage to ensure you meet all standards of health requirements. This includes providing evidence of good health and having a chest x-ray and medical examination if required.
3. English Language Requirements
Applicants under the Skilled Migrant category, including those aged 16 or over who are accompanying you to New Zealand, will need to meet these English language requirements. This can be done by providing evidence of English language proficiency or by taking an English language test.
4. Age Requirements
Some New Zealand visas have age requirements. For example, to be eligible for a skilled migrant visa, you must be under 55 years old.
5. Skill Requirements
If you are applying for a work or resident visa, you must meet the skill requirements. This includes having the necessary qualifications, experience, and skills that New Zealand needs.
6. Financial Requirements
You must provide evidence of financial support to be eligible for some New Zealand visas. This includes showing that you have enough money to support yourself and any dependents while in New Zealand.
Overview of Visas
New Zealand offers a range of visas for people who want to work, study, invest, or settle permanently in the country. The following are the most common types of visas:
- Work Visas: A work visa is for people who want to work in New Zealand for a specific employer or on their own. To obtain a work visa, you must have a job offer from a New Zealand employer, meet the skill and health requirements, and have a valid passport.
- Student Visas: Student visas are for people who want to study in New Zealand for more than three months. To obtain a student visa, you must have an offer of place from a New Zealand education provider, meet the English language requirements, and provide evidence of financial support.
- Visitor Visas: Visitor visas are for people who want to visit New Zealand for tourism, business, or to visit family and friends. To obtain a visitor visa, you must have a valid passport, be of good character, and meet the health requirements.
- Resident Visas: Resident visas are for people who want to live and work in New Zealand permanently. To obtain a resident visa, you must meet the character, health, and English language requirements, and have the skills, qualifications, or experience that New Zealand needs.
1. What is the processing time for a visa application?
The processing time for a New Zealand visa application varies depending on the type of visa you are applying for and your individual circumstances. It can range from a few weeks to several months. You can check the estimated processing time on the New Zealand Immigration website.
2. Can I apply online?
Yes, you can apply for a New Zealand visa online through the Immigration New Zealand website. The online application process is generally faster and more convenient than the paper-based application process.
3. What are the fees?
The fees for a New Zealand visa vary depending on the type of visa you are applying for and your individual circumstances. You can check the fee schedule on the New Zealand Immigration website to find out the specific fee for your visa.
4. Can I appeal a visa application that has been declined?
If your visa application has been declined, you will receive a letter outlining the reasons for the decision and the appeal process. You have the right to appeal the decision to the Immigration and Protection Tribunal.
5. Do I need to provide evidence of health insurance?
This depends on the type of visa you are applying for and your individual circumstances. You can check the specific health insurance requirements on the New Zealand Immigration website.
6. Can I apply if I have a criminal record?
If you have a criminal record, it may affect your eligibility for a New Zealand visa. However, the severity of the offense and the time since the offense will be taken into consideration. You will need to provide details of any criminal convictions when you apply for a visa.
7. Can I bring my family with me on a work or study visa?
If you are granted a work or study visa for New Zealand, your spouse, partner, and dependent children may be eligible to apply for visas to accompany you to New Zealand. However, they will need to meet certain eligibility criteria and provide evidence of their relationship with you.
8. How long can I stay in New Zealand on a visitor visa?
The duration of your stay in New Zealand on a visitor visa will depend on the type of visa you have been granted. Generally, visitor visas are valid for up to nine months, but some visas may allow for longer or shorter stays.
9. What happens if my visa expires while I am in New Zealand?
If your visa expires, you will become unlawfully present in the country. This can have serious consequences, including being deported and barred from returning to New Zealand. It is important to apply for a new visa or an extension of your current visa before your current visa expires.
10. Can I work in New Zealand on a visitor visa?
No, you are not allowed to work on a visitor visa. You will need to apply for a work visa that is specific to your occupation and employer. If you want to check if your occupation is eligible for a skilled visa, you can refer to the Skilled Occupation List (SOL) provided by the New Zealand government.
Obtaining a New Zealand visa can be a complex process, but by understanding the requirements and following the guidelines, you can make the process smoother. Whether you are looking to work, study, invest, or settle permanently in New Zealand, there is a visa option available to suit your needs.