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NEW ZEALAND – Changes to Residence Processing Priority Rules

Effective 24 February 2020, applications under the Residence for Work (RFW) programme will no longer be prioritised over those under the Skilled Migrant Category (SMC).

Applications will now only be prioritised where an applicant requires professional registration or earns at least twice the New Zealand median wage (currently NZD 106,080 per year).

Processing times for RFW applications are therefore likely to increase, and temporary entry visas may need to be renewed while the applicant is waiting for a residence decision.

Our Advice

  • Employers are advised to prepare and submit residence applications as soon as possible, and employees should be prepared to renew their temporary entry visas due to extended RFW processing times.
  • Employers who may be affected are encouraged to contact a Newland Chase immigration specialist for case-specific advice.
DISCLAIMER: The information contained in this immigration alert has been abridged from laws, court decisions, and administrative rulings and should not be construed or relied upon as legal advice. If you have specific questions regarding the applicability of this information, please contact Peregrine © 2019 Peregrine Immigration Management Ltd.