New Zealand: Skilled Migrant Residence Visa Eligibility Criteria Restricted

The Skilled Migrant Category Resident Visa eligibility criteria has been restricted, including an increase in the points threshold for selection and a requirement for some applicants to complete formal tests to prove their knowledge of the English language.

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Oct 14, 2016
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The Skilled Migrant Category Resident Visa eligibility criteria has been restricted, according to an announcement by the Minister of Immigration. The points threshold for selection has been increased from 140 to 160 (regardless of whether an applicant has a job offer) and some applicants must now complete formal tests to prove their knowledge of the English language.

All other policies, including work and work-to-residence visas, remain unchanged.

Employees who are no longer able to qualify for the Skilled Migrant Category may be able to apply for a temporary work visa or work-to-residence visa. Depending on the role, the employer may need to conduct a labor market test.

What This Means for Employers and Foreign Nationals

Foreign nationals with a pending Expression of Interest or Skilled Migrant Category Resident Visa application should contact their immigration professional as Immigration New Zealand will be contacting such applicants to request more information in the next few days.

This alert is for informational purposes only. If you have any questions, please contact the global immigration professional with whom you work at Fragomen or send an email to fragomenclientcorrespondence@fragomen.com.

© 2016 Fragomen, Del Rey, Bernsen & Loewy, LLP, Fragomen Global LLP and affiliates. All Rights Reserved.

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