Immigration NZ announces large scale Resident Visa Opportunity

In September 2021, INZ announced some good news for New Zealand in general and the migrant community in particular.

No doubt this was a result of the increasing and broad weight of the political pressure they were under to recognise NZ’s future depends on the migrant community.

INZ will open Resident Visa applications in two phases, starting from 1 December 2021 for those who

  • have been in NZ on 29 September 2021 and hold an eligible work visa; or,
  • are a critical worker and families who enter NZ in a 6+ month roles until 31 July 2022).

To apply, you must also meet one of the following criteria (specific to the dairy industry):

  • lived in NZ from before 29 September 2018 and for at least 821 days to 29 Sept 2021 ; or,
  • earn $27 per hour or more for 30+ hours of work per week; or,
  • work in a role on the Long Term Skill Shortage List) or in a primary industry (includes farming and fisheries, for example)

In addition to being able to prove the above eligibility, you must still be able to meet health and character standards.  INZ have updated requirements and confirmed that English language test would not be required but for partners/spouses  to be included, the must meet ‘genuine and stable’ relationship criteria.


The application process is promised to be simplified to deal with applications as quickly as possible (INZ have said the target is 80% applications decided within a year) and is divided into two phases:

1 December 2021, for 1 March 2022, for
  • people who have submitted a Skilled Migrant Category (SMC) or Residence from Work (RfW) application
  • those with dependent children 17 years or older who currently have an SMC Expression of Interest (EOI) submitted
  • all other eligible applicants, including any others in the SMC Expression of Interest pool (those who have no dependents or children <17 years old)
  • Eligible Visas: Essential Skills, Work to Residence, and Post Study Work visas
  • Ineligible Visas: visitor, student, working holiday Visa, and Recognised Seasonal Employer (SSE) workers.


  • The cost for the INZ application is $2160 including gst and made up of  $1,880 application fee and $830 immigration levy

Next Steps

The eligibility bar is low but, for the application to be successful, it must be complete and correct for you and your family to meet INZ resident visa requirements. And, as there are expected to be 4000 applicants from the dairy industry alone, you also want to make sure that the application is ‘submission ready’ for 1 March so you’re in the front of the queue.

Given how important this process is for you and your family, we would strongly recommend that the first step is to contact us to do a formal assessment with our licensed immigration advisers, particularly if you are looking to include dependents. This will help ensure that you

  • meet eligibility criteria
  • are clear on what documents you need and have for you and your family
  • identify early any potential issues and solutions
  • have all the documents ready to go

The assessment cost for this is $500+gst which can be applied to the cost for FRENZ application service, if you elect.

You can call us at 09 303 3505  or  email our immigration team here

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8 Adelaide Street, Auckland 1010. New Zealand

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