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Work Visas

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Work Visas

Workers in New Zealand enjoy a more relaxed working environment than those in many countries. We value our work/life balance so that we may enjoy spending quality time with family and friends. Having a very low level of unemployment we need skilled people to help our country grow.

The most common work visas are:


Essential Skills Work Visa

This is for roles where we are unable to find a New Zealander to do the job. It must be a full-time role and you must have the necessary skills and qualifications for that occupation. Some roles may need registration in New Zealand.

You can stay in NZ for UP TO 5 years on this visa, depending on the skill level of the job you are offered. Whilst on this visa you can train and gain valuable NZ work experience, which may lead to assisting you towards residency. Your immigration adviser will be able to tell you how this could be possible.


Long Term Skill Shortage List Work Visa

This is for roles that are on Immigration New Zealand’s Long Term Skill Shortage List. It offers a pathway to a residence, as you can work here for 2 years and then apply for residency. Your offer of work needs to be full-time for 24 months and you will need to show you have the qualifications and prior work experience to do the job.

You can stay 30 months on this visa and permanently thereafter once your application for residency has been approved, or you can apply for a further work visa.


Talent (Accredited Employer) Work Visa

A number of NZ employers have been through an accreditation process which allows them to offer migrants work without the need to prove there are no New Zealanders for the job. If you have a full-time job offer for 24 months from an accredited employer and your salary is $55,000 or higher, you may be eligible for this visa. You must also be less than 56 years of age.

This visa lasts for 30 months, after which you may apply for residency or a further work visa.


Partner of a Worker Work Visa

If your partner is eligible for a work visa, then you may also be able to work here. You can stay for as long as your partner’s visa conditions allow. You can work at any job. Note that not all workers are eligible to support a partner to work. See your immigration adviser for details.