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Applications open for new 2021 Resident Visa

The first round of applications for New Zealand’s new 2021 Resident visa open today.

“This one-off pathway provides certainty for a great many migrant families who have faced disruption because of Covid-19 and it will help retain the skills New Zealand businesses need to support the economic recovery,” says Minister of Immigration Kris Faafoi.

It’s estimated up to 15,000 migrants who have lived in New Zealand for the last three years or who work in skilled or scarce jobs, and were in New Zealand on September 29, 2021, will be able to apply in this first round.

To be eligible for this first phase a person must also have already submitted either a:

  •   •  Skilled Migrant Category (SMC) application; or

  •   •  Residence from Work application; or

  •   •  SMC Expression of Interest (EOI) which includes dependent children who were 17 years or older as at September 29, 2021.

“The Government has created this new one-off residence pathway recognising the immense contribution migrants have made to New Zealand during Covid-19 and appreciating the uncertainty they have faced with border restrictions,” says Faafoi.

“We are expecting high demand in the first few weeks, with lots of people wanting to submit their application early, but we ask people to be patient.

“We recognise that some of these individuals have been waiting for residence for a long time and are eager to get their applications in quickly, but they have plenty of time to apply.

“Applications for both Phase One and Phase Two will be open until July 31, 2022.

“The Government has been working hard to make sure the new 2021 Resident Visa application process is simple, streamlined and easy for individuals, and Immigration New Zealand is committed to processing the vast majority of these applications within 12 months, with some much sooner,” says Faafoi.

It’s estimated that around another 150,000 migrants could be eligible for the 2021 Resident Visa in Phase Two which opens for applications from March 1, 2022.

More information about the 2021 Resident Visa is available on the Immigration New Zealand website, including an eligibility checker, a “How to Apply” video, outlining the application process, and an Application Checklist.

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