The New Zealand Government has announced changes to the work visa process, increased remuneration thresholds and the re-opening of the parent category that has been closed since 2016.
Whilst a lot of detail is yet to be released, this month Ajuria New Zealand provides an overview of the changes that will affect employers.
Work to Residence Talent (Accredited Employer) Remuneration Increase
Effective from 7 October 2019, the new minimum base salary for those applying for a Talent (Accredited Employer) work visa increased from NZ$55,000 to NZ$79,560 for a 40 hour week. This new threshold applies to all new visas applied for on or after 7 October (ie those who already hold Talent visas are not affected by these changes, and employers do not need to give those employees a pay increase to meet the threshold.)
Essential Skills Work Visa changes
These changes will be phased in during 2021, so are still a little way off. However, the structure of the new work visa process will be somewhat familiar to those in Australia.
The new regime will see all employers requiring to hold an accreditation status with Immigration New Zealand. Then, once this is in place, there will be a ‘job check’ (similar to the nomination application in Australia) and then the last part will be the actual ‘worker check’, or visa application.
In a very welcome move, the need for an ANZSCO classification of the occupation will be removed, and instead the visa length will be based on remuneration alone. Labour market testing will also be removed for those earning above the median wage, and located outside of the main centres. Those in lower paid roles will have the ability to support family members reinstated.
In our next newsletter, Ajuria New Zealand will outline the changes to the Parent visa category, and advise of other significant changes as they are announced.
DISCLAIMER This information is current as ofand subject to change. The information contained in this publication is of a general nature only. It should not be used as legal advice. To the extent permissible by law, Ajuria Lawyers and its associated entities shall not be liable for any errors, omissions, defects or misrepresentations in the information or for any loss or damage suffered by persons who use or rely on such information. Liability limited by a scheme approved under Professional Standards Legislation.