Work Visas

NEW ZEALAND WORK VISAS

If you have specialised skills and have a qualification that meets New Zealand standards, you’ll find that there are great career opportunities for you here. New Zealand is a fantastic place to have work life balance and enjoy what the country has to offer on your time off.

There are a few accelerated pathways for migrants who have the skills New Zealand desperately needs. These are known as our Skill Shortage Lists:

The Long Term Skill Shortage List (LTSSL) – Includes occupations where there is a sustained and on-going shortage of highly skilled workers throughout New Zealand. This also includes a direct pathway to residence.

The Regional Skill Shortage List (RSSL) – Includes occupations where skilled workers are immediately required in some, or all regions of New Zealand. This is a great way to get your work visa approved quickly.

There are plenty of other ways you can get a work visa in New Zealand, but for those on either of these lists, you are in luck. New Zealand has a dynamic and fast moving labour market, so if you find your skills in demand, you should apply quickly. Both of these lists are reviewed and changed often. So if you leave it too long, you might find that other migrants have filled the shortages before you, leaving your application waiting in the queue.

If you’re already in New Zealand on a work visa, or you’re not sure if you want to migrate – make sure you check these lists. There may be several visas you are eligible to apply for – each with its own criteria and application process, but being on a skills shortage list will almost always make it easier for you to secure your next visa.

TALK TO ONE OF OUR LICENSED IMMIGRATIONS ADVISERS TO CHECK YOUR ELIGIBILITY AND OPTIONS.

COMMON WORK VISA TYPES

If you have been offered a full time role and you have the necessary qualifications and/or work experience for that role you may be eligible for this visa.  In most cases your employer will need to advertise the role and prove that there are no New Zealand citizens or residents available for the role.

The length of the visa can be from 6 months to 3 years depending on the pay rate offered.

Your visa will state the job title, employer and region where you may work.  If these circumstances change you may need to apply for a new visa.

Your partner or dependent children may be able to apply separately for visas based on their relationship to you.

Essential Skills Work Visas are intended to fill temporary skill gaps, so they do not lead directly to a residence application. However, if you have an Essential Skills work visa based on a skilled job, you may gain enough points to qualify for residence through the Skilled Migrant Category.

If you have been offered a full time role with an accredited employer and you have the necessary qualifications and/or work experience for that role you may be eligible for this visa.  Your pay rate would be required to be over $79,080 per annum.

The length of the visa is 30 months and in most circumstances you can apply for residence after working on this visa for 24 months.

Your partner or dependent children may be able to apply separately for visas based on their relationship to you.

If you have been offered a full time role and you have the necessary qualifications and/or work experience for that role you may be eligible for this visa if you fit the criteria for the occupation of the Long Term Skill Shortage list.

The length of the visa is 30 months and in most circumstances you can apply for residence after working on this visa for 24 months.

Your partner or dependent children may be able to apply separately for visas based on their relationship to you.

ALERT: Applications from outside New Zealand for most working holiday visas are currently suspended unless you are applying from a Quarantine-free travel zone for certain citizenships.

Working holiday visas are available to young people, usually aged 18 to 30, but 18 to 35 in a select few countries. They let you travel and work in New Zealand for up to 12 months, or 23 months if you are from the UK or Canada.

You need to have enough money to pay for a return ticket, and be coming mainly to holiday, with work being a secondary intention. Each country working holiday visa has specific conditions.

This visa is for people who need to come to New Zealand for a specific purpose or event. To apply you’ll need to have skills related to your specific purpose or event and be able to define the time you’ll need to complete your specific purpose or event. Examples of people who may be able to apply include business people on secondments, sports players, professional coaches, specialist installers or services, and Philippines nurses seeking occupational registration.

You can’t include your partner or dependent children in your visa application, but they can apply for visas based on their relationship to you.

If you have acceptable qualifications(s) that you completed in New Zealand, you can apply for a visa to work here. Depending on your qualification and where you studied, you can work for any employer for between 1 and 3 years, and do almost any work.

On this visa you can work for any employer in almost any job and can be self employed.

Your partner may be eligible to apply for a work visa and your dependent children can study fee-free as domestic students.

If you wish to change your circumstances, employer, job or area you may be eligible to apply for a variation of conditions or you may need to apply for a new work visa.  There is strict criteria for each specific type of work visa you are currently on to be able to apply for a variation of conditions.