From 4 July 2022, employers who have gained Employer Accreditation and completed the relevant Job Check(s) will be able to start supporting migrant workers on Accredited Employer Work Visas. This includes new migrant workers (including ones from offshore) and existing migrant worker visa renewals.
Employers will need to gain Employer Accreditation and complete the relevant Job Check(s) before they can support migrant workers on Accredited Employer Work Visas.
This article will focus on the key considerations and components relating to Accredited Employer Work Visa applications.
Briefly, the Accredited Employer Work Visa 3-step process is as follows (in order of application):
- Step 1 – Employer Accreditation: This is where Immigration New Zealand will check for employer regulatory compliance, confirm sound financial position, and confirm that the employer has carried out migrant worker settlement support activities. This step opened on 23 May 2022, with an estimated 10 working day processing timeframe for Standard Accreditation and High-Volume Accreditation.
- Step 2 – Job Check: This is the new Labour Market Test (advertising test) where Immigration New Zealand will check to see if the role(s) is/are genuine and where employers will need to prove to Immigration New Zealand that there are no New Zealand Citizens or Resident Visa holders to carry out or be easily trained to carry out the role(s). Job Check Labour Market Test evidence is not required for roles paid twice the median wage or for roles on the Green List . This step opened on 20 June 2022, with an estimated 10 working day processing timeframe.
- Step 3 – Accredited Employer Work Visa Application (Migrant Worker Check): This is where Immigration New Zealand checks the migrant worker to confirm that they are of good health, good character, and if they are suitably qualified through qualifications and/or relevant experience. This step opens on 4 July 2022, with an estimated 20 working day processing timeframe.
Immigration New Zealand’s application fees are as follows:
|Employer Accreditation (Paid By Employer)||
|Job Check (Paid By Employer)||
|Migrant Check (Paid By Migrant)||
What The Accredited Employer Must To Do Initiate The Accredited Employer Work Visa Application
Prior to inviting a migrant worker to apply for an Accredited Employer Work Visa, it is a good idea for the Accredited Employer to check whether the migrant worker meets the job requirements (including skills, experience, qualifications, and/or occupational registration) the Accredited Employer listed when applying for the Job Check, as this is what Immigration New Zealand will also look at.
Accredited Employers must have their relevant Job Check approved first. Once approved, the Accredited Employer can invite the migrant worker to apply for their Accredited Employer Work Visa by entering the migrant worker’s details into the enhanced Immigration Online system dashboard. To do this, you will need to:
- Click “Employ Migrants”.
- Go to the “My Accredited Organisations” section.
- Next to your company and under “Options” click “View Organisation”.
- Go to the “Approved Jobs” section.
- Next to the correct job title and under “Options” you should see the option to invite the migrant worker to apply.
- Enter the migrant worker’s full name and email address.
Once done, a unique Job Token will be generated. The migrant worker will then be emailed the unique Job Token and a unique link. The migrant worker can then follow this unique link to confirm the role that they have been offered and the Accredited Employer’s details.
Accredited Employers must also provide the migrant worker with a copy of their signed job offer, employment agreement, and the relevant detailed job description. This should be relatively straightforward, as it is the same acceptable job offer, employment agreement, and a detailed job description template provided to Immigration New Zealand during the Accredited Employer’s Job Check application. In practice, the Accredited Employer should only need to update the templates with the migrant worker’s details.
Accredited Employer Work Visa Application Overview For Migrant Workers
All documents must be in English. If not, the documents must be officially translated.In addition to the application form, migrant workers should prepare the following for their Accredited Employer Work Visa application:
- Job Token email which has been initiated by their Accredited Employer;
- A RealMe login to access the enhanced Immigration Online system (if applying without an immigration lawyer or licensed adviser);
- An acceptable electronic passport photo;
- A copy of the signed job offer, employment agreement, and the relevant detailed job description;
- A way to pay for the Immigration New Zealand application fee (such as a Debit Visa or Credit Card);
- Scan of their passport photo page;
- Police certificate(s) dated within 6 months of the application date and any other character evidence, if required;
- Evidence of relevant (to what was listed in the Accredited Employer’s Job Check) qualifications, work experience, and/or occupational registration, if required; and
- If the migrant worker is not living in their country of citizenship, then visa evidence from the country they currently live in.
Please note that migrant workers can include additional evidence if they feel that it is necessary. Immigration New Zealand will check if a Full General Medical or Chest X-ray is required after the Accredited Employer Work Visa has been submitted. If further information is needed, this will be requested by an Immigration Officer by email.
If a migrant worker has provided their qualifications and/or work experience with a previous application accepted by Immigration New Zealand, or if the migrant worker holds occupational registration, they may not need to provide evidence of these.
It is interesting to note that the application form now directly asks if the migrant worker is a family member of the Accredited Employer. Care should be taken here.
Who Should Pay
Usually, the migrant worker would pay for the Accredited Employer Work Visa as Immigration New Zealand has deemed this a migrant worker cost. However, some generous Accredited Employers may choose to pay for their migrant workers as a talent attraction incentive.
Accredited Employer Work Visa Application Processing, Variations, & Duration
Please note that the 20 working day processing estimate is for decision-ready applications. This means applications that are well-prepared and have no issues. Applications will be processed in submission order.
It is possible for Accredited Employer Work Visas to apply for a Job Change.
Applications where the migrant worker is paid ‘at or above the median wage’ will be granted an Accredited Employer Work Visa for 3 years. Application where the migrant worker is paid ‘below the median wage’ due to the role being on the Roles Exempt From Accredited Employer Work Visa Median Wage Threshold List, will be granted an Accredited Employer Work Visa for up to 2 years. If a migrant worker is subject to a stand-down period within 2 years, Immigration New Zealand will only grant the paid ‘below the median wage’ Accredited Employer Work Visa for the remaining pre-stand-down period duration.
Eligibility To Support Their Partner On A Partnership Open Work Visa
Only Accredited Employer Work Visa holders who are paid ‘at or above the median wage’ will be able to support their partners on a Partnership Open Work Visa (provided they also meet the relevant requirements).
Immigration New Zealand has indicated that Partnership Open Work Visas for partners of some work visa holders may be phased out in April 2023.
How We Can Help
This article was written to provide general guidance only. It is correct at as the date of this article and is subject to further updates. Stay Legal is always happy to provide immigration guidance and solutions. If you have any questions about the contents of this article, please do not hesitate to contact us. Please call us +64 7 575 2882 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.