Welcome to GO Immigration Ltd | New Zealand Immigration Services

Talk to expert

+64 21 02852718

Call Now

New 2021 Resident Visa / One-Off Residence Visa Pathway

30 September 2021BY Sanela.barac

Tuesday, 30 September 2021

Long anticipated residence visa announcement came this morning from the Minister of Immigration, Kris Faafoi.

Today, 30 September 2021, a new one-off residence visa pathway was announced.
Applications for this one-off residence visa pathway will become available in two phases:
  • Phase 1 – from 1 December 2021 for some eligible applicants; and
  • Phase 2 – from 1 March 2022 for remaining eligible applicants.
  • The category will remain open for application by 31 July 2022.


    Phase 1 – Eligible from 1 December 2021 will be those who:
  • Have already applied for residence under the Skilled Migrant Category (SMC) and Residence from Work categories before 29 September 2021, OR
  • Have submitted a Skilled Migrant Category Expression of Interest, and have included dependent child in the Expression of Interest aged 17 years or older on 29 September 2021.
  • The Immigration New Zealand will send an email to those who are eligible to apply from 1 December 2021 by the end of October with further information.
    Phase 2 – Eligible to apply from 1 March 2022 will be all other eligible applicants who met the imposed criteria (you can find out more about the criteria in the text below), including all others who have submitted a Skilled Migrant Category Expression of Interest.

    Who will be eligible?

    The new residence visa pathway will be available for:
  • Some temporary work visa holders currently in New Zealand; and
  • To some critical purpose visa holders arriving in New Zealand between 30 September 2021 and 31 July 2022 on long-term visas.

  • Partners and dependent children, including those currently outside New Zealand, can be included in residence applications.


    Applicants must have met 2 different sets of criteria on 29 September 2021.

    1. Must:
  • Have been in New Zealand on 29 September 2021, AND
  • Be on an eligible visa or have applied for an eligible visa on or before 29 September 2021 that is later granted.

  • AND in addition

    2. Must also meet one of the three criteria:
  • Have lived in New Zealand for three or more years (to met this criteria the applicant’s date of arrival to New Zealand must be on or before 29 September 2018, and the applicant must spent a minimum of 821 days in New Zealand between 29 September 2018 and 29 September 2021 (inclusive), or
  • Earn at or above the median wage ($27 per hour or above) on 29 September 2021, or
  • Work in a role on a scarce list on 29 September 2021 (Jobs on the Long Term Skill Shortage List, Jobs requiring occupational registration in the health or education sector, Personal carer and other critical health workers, Specified primary sector jobs).

  • Applicants who are in Australia and have been unable to return to New Zealand by 29 September 2021, may be considered eligible if they meet the criteria for eligibility as listed above.

    Visas eligible to support New 2021 Resident Visa – One-Off Residence Visa Pathway

    On 29 September all applicants must have been on (or have applied for and later granted) one of the following visas:
  • Post Study Work Visa
  • Talent (Accredited Employer) Work Visa
  • Essential Skills Work Visa
  • Religious Worker Work Visa
  • Talent (Arts, Culture, Sports) Work Visa
  • Long Term Skill Shortage List Work Visa
  • Silver Fern Practical Experience Work Visa
  • Trafficking Victim Work Visa
  • Migrant Exploitation Protection Work Visa
  • Skilled Migrant Category Job Search Work Visa
  • Victims of Family Violence Work Visa
  • South Island Contribution Work Visa
  • Work Visa granted under Section 61 (provided the applicant held another eligible visa type within 6 months before being granted a Section 61 visa)
  • Some Critical Purpose Visitor Visa (CPVV) holders as long as you arrive in New Zealand and apply before 31 July 2022 including those:
  • – Critical health workers for longer term roles (6 months or longer), and
    – Other critical workers for long term roles (more than 6 months).

    This residence pathway is not available for short-term visa holders, such as visitors, students, working holiday makers, and seasonal workers (like those on the Recognised Seasonal Employer Scheme, those who enter as short-term critical workers including fishing crew, agricultural and horticulture mobile plant operators and shearers).

    Other requirements

  • All and applicants, and their included family members, must meet the heath and character requirements.
  • Overseas police certificates will not be required (unless specifically requested by INZ).
  • Limited medical certificates and chest x-ray certificates may be required for some people (INZ may request further information as part of the application process).

  • Individuals who do not meet the criteria will need to look at what other residence pathways or temporary visa options may be available to them.

    More information about fees and the application process will be released by the end of October 2021.

    Processing timeframes

    Intention is for the majority of applications to be processed within 12 months, with most being processed much faster.

    Are you eligible for the New 2021 Resident Visa – One-Off Residence Visa Pathway? Not sure? Need assistance to apply?

    Get in touch with GO Immigration today for assessment and assistance.

    Source: Beehive.govt.nz – Official website of the New Zealand Government

    Source: Immigration.govt.nz – Official New Zealand Immigration website