New Zealand Work Visa

Want to apply for a New Zealand work visa but don’t know where to start? Looking for a reliable, professional work visa immigration consultant who can prevent you from mistakes and declined visas? Zenith Immigration Solutions is ready to help you. We are the trusted immigration advisers with in-depth knowledge and long-lasting experience in the field. With our qualified assistance, you have all chances to get your work visa in New Zealand without problems in the shortest period possible.

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Partnership Work Visa NZ


Partner of a New Zealander Work Visa

This work visa will allow people in a partnership with a New Zealander to join their partner in New Zealand. To get this visa, the applicant must demonstrate that they are living together in a genuine and stable relationship with a New Zealander, who is eligible to support their visa application.


Partner of a Temporary Visa Holder

Partners of eligible work visa or student visa holders can apply for a New Zealand work visa based on their partnership. To see if you are eligible to get a partnership based work visa, click here.


If your partner is already in New Zealand, or you and your partner are applying for a visa to come to New Zealand together, you may be eligible for a visa based on your partnership.

Working Holiday Visa


This work visa in New Zealand is granted to citizens of certain countries. The quota is limited and closes after the places are filled.


This visa is suitable for the people whose main reason for coming to New Zealand is on holiday, but want to work or study during their stay here.


Working holiday visas are available to young people, usually aged 18-30, but 18-35 in a select few countries. They let you travel and work in New Zealand for up to 12 months or 23 months if you’re from the UK or Canada. If you apply for a 23-month visa, you must provide a General Medical Certificate. You need to have a return ticket or enough money to pay for one and be coming mainly on holiday, with work being a secondary intention.


It is suitable for people who want to come to New Zealand primarily for a holiday but want to work or study while you’re here.


Accredited Employer Work Visa (AEWV) 

From 23 May employers can apply for accreditation – from 4 July employers must be accredited to support an application under the AEWV. Accreditation is the first of three ‘gates’ before a migrant can be employed. The additional gates are job check and AEWV application. 



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Employer Accreditation

Standard businesses

For standard business models there are 2 different levels of accreditation depending on how many migrants you want to employ.


Standard accreditation — if you want up to 5 migrant workers on AEWVs at any one time.

High-volume accreditation — if you want 6 or more migrant workers on AEWVs at any one time.


This only includes migrants on AEWVs. Migrants on other visa types (for example working holiday visas) are not counted toward the total.


There is no difference in the accreditation requirements between standard and high-volume accreditation. Additional requirements for high-volume employers may be considered in the future.

Employers can pay a fee to upgrade from standard to high-volume accreditation.


Franchisees and employers who place migrants with a controlling third party

Franchisees, and employers wanting to place migrants on AEWVs with controlling third parties (including labour hire companies), must apply for the accreditation suited to their business model.

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Job Check

Once you are accredited, you need to apply for a job check for each job you want to hire a migrant worker for. Multiple positions for the same job can be included in one job check if the job details are the same and are all covered by the same advertising (where required) and proposed employment agreement.

You can only hire a migrant worker on an AEWV for a job if it passed the job check. Employers pay for a job check.

The job check confirms:

the job pays the market rate and meets wage thresholds applicable under the relevant job check pathway

the job’s terms and conditions comply with New Zealand employment laws and standards

the job is for a minimum of 30 hours a week

you have advertised the job to New Zealanders, if you need to, including the minimum and maximum expected pay rate and the skills or experience required.

If you offer the job to a migrant but do not hire them, you can offer the job to another suitable applicant. You do not have to redo the job check unless it has expired.


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Visa Application

If the job passes the job check the migrant worker can apply for a visa.

INZ checks if the visa applicant meets the requirements for the AEWV, including that they have the skills and experience for the job.


Requirements to get and maintain accreditation


1. Viable and genuinely operating business

  • You must be a viable and genuinely operating business.
  • You must be registered as an employer with Inland Revenue (IRD).
  • Your business must meet one of these:

- be profitable (before depreciation and tax over the last 24 months)

- have positive cash flow for each of the last 6 months

- have sufficient capital and external investment or funding (for example from a founder or parent company)

- have a plan to ensure the business remains viable.


2. Businesses operating for less than 12 months must provide evidence of this criteria at application.

Evidence for businesses operating less than 12 months may include:

- evidence of start-up capital or funding

- cash-flow or revenue forecasts

- contracts for work

- GST returns

- PAYE returns.


Most other employers will not need to provide evidence upfront, but evidence may be required to show you meet the requirements once the application is submitted or at any time during your accreditation.


3. Compliance 


You or your key people must not have:

  • employed a migrant who did not have the right visa or visa conditions to work in that role
  • provided false or misleading information to INZ.
  • If you have, you need to have addressed the non-compliance and taken steps to prevent it re-occurring before you can get AEWV accreditation.
  • You or your key people must not be banned from acting as a director or have a pattern of immigration offences in other businesses you or your key people have been involved in.
  • A business with compliance failures cannot be closed and opened again under a new name to dodge those failures. We will still take the compliance issues in the previous business into account.


4. Completed employer learning modules


You must ensure everyone making recruitment decisions completes Employment New Zealand's most recent online employer modules on employment rights.

This could include hiring managers, human resource managers, sole traders, and partners. This only applies to those involved in hiring AEWV holders.

You must keep records of all of the modules being completed. The modules must be completed once within every accreditation period and finished before that period ends.


5. Pay recruitment costs


You must pay all recruitment costs in New Zealand and outside New Zealand.

This includes, but is not limited to:

- advertising

- recruitment agency fees

- employer accreditation fees

- job check application fees

- trade testing

- tools where the ownership is retained by the employer

- compulsory training and induction.

- You must not charge fees outside New Zealand which would be illegal if charged in New Zealand, including:

- payment to secure a job

- bonding agreements illegally binding workers to a business

- deductions that are unreasonable or not agreed in writing.


6. Provide settlement support


You must provide migrant workers with work-related settlement information within one month of the employee beginning their employment including:

- how to get an IRD number

- relevant industry training and qualification information and options

- specific job or industry hazards.

- accommodation options

- transport options

- cost of living

- how to access healthcare services

- Citizens Advice Bureau services

- information about relevant community groups.

- Your AEWV holder should be directed to appropriate websites with information about living in New Zealand.


7. Let employees complete learning modules


You must allow migrant workers time to complete all of Employment New Zealand's most recent online employee modules on employment rights during paid work hours within one month of the AEWV holder starting employment.


How long you can be accredited

When you are approved for the first time you will receive employer accreditation for 12 months.

At renewal, franchisees and employers placing migrants on AEWVs with controlling third parties will get accreditation for a further 12 months.

All other employers will get accreditation for 24 months when they renew, providing their previous accreditation has not lapsed for 12 months or more.


Maintaining accreditation

We may do checks during the accreditation period to ensure you still meet the accreditation requirements.

This could include requesting information or doing a site visit.

You must provide information requested, and provide access for site visits. If you do not, your accreditation will be revoked.

If we become aware at any point during the accreditation period that you do not meet the requirements, your accreditation will be revoked.

If you are under investigation or being prosecuted for breaching accreditation requirements, your accreditation can be suspended, and you won’t be able to support any job check applications.

If any of the details you provided in your application change you must tell us within 10 business days.

If you go through a restructure or merger, your accreditation cannot be transferred to a new legal entity. Any new entity will need to apply in their own right.

When you apply to renew accreditation, we may ask for evidence you have completed any activities you were required to do during the previous accreditation period.

Job Check 


Highly paid jobs


If the job is paid at least 200% of the median wage, you do not need to advertise the role.

Visas for these jobs can be for up to 3 years and can offer a pathway to residence. Further details for this pathway will be provided as part of the Skilled Migrant Category review.


All other jobs


All other jobs must pay at least the median wage and you must have advertised to New Zealanders.

Visas for these jobs can be for up to 3 years.


The Government is considering whether there will be any exemptions to the requirement to pay at least the median wage, and restrictions for some other roles.


Median wage


The median wage will increase from NZD $27.00 an hour to NZD $27.76 an hour on 4 July 2022, when the Accredited Employer Work Visa opens for applications.

The median wage increase will apply to job checks submitted from 20 June 2022, when applications for the job check open.


Advertising requirements


The terms and conditions of the job must be clear in the job advertisement. The employer must genuinely consider any New Zealanders who apply.


Advertising must:

  • be for a minimum of 2 weeks on a national job listing website where suitable New Zealanders are likely to apply, or another advertising channel more likely to attract suitable New Zealanders to the specific role
  • show significant terms and conditions including the minimum and maximum pay rate, the minimum guaranteed hours of work, the location of the job
  • show the estimated actual earnings where a significant portion of the pay is by piece rate, commission or other rates or bonuses that are not guaranteed
  • show minimum qualifications, work experience, skills or other specifications necessary to do the job.


Calculating the minimum pay rate


To accommodate the median wage threshold, INZ will provide more flexibility when calculating the minimum pay rate for the AEWV.


From 4 July 2022, employee’s pay will be averaged over the number of hours paid in the pay period. Employers will need to guarantee in their worker’s employment that the equivalent of the median wage will be paid per hour, in each pay cycle. Some employers may need to change employment agreements to provide these guarantees.


Multiple positions


Multiple positions for the same job can be included in one job check if the job details are the same (for example they have the same occupation, pay range, region or city and minimum job requirements), and are all covered by the same advertising (where required) and proposed employment agreement.



Job check fee — NZD $610.

Reconsideration of declined job check — NZD $240.

Job check duration

An approved job check is valid for 6 months or until you no longer hold accreditation, whichever is earlier.

Looking to get Accredited? or Hiring Migrant Workers?



If you’re planning to apply for work visa NZ, you definitely need a knowledgeable and experienced immigration adviser to help you make the whole process problem-free and fast.  Zenith Immigration Solutions is ready to become your reliable assistant in receiving a New Zealand work visa. When you entrust us with your particular case, you get a number of undeniable benefits available only with our highly-qualified immigration lawyers.

New Zealand Work Visa - Excellent Success Rate

Excellent Success Rate

We check all the documentation properly to ensure all requirements for a visa category are met. We will be with you throughout the process to guide you.

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Our dealings with our clients are ethical and professional. We will not mislead or misguide you. This can be confirmed by many happy clients who have dealt with us in the past.

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We know the immigration process personally and are dedicated to using our knowledge to help you overcome any challenge you might face.

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Client Focus

Our successful record shows we know how to help people, including offshore applicants in getting visas even after declined visas.

Applying for a New Zealand Work Visa


We strive to keep our clients well-informed on the process to avoid any unexpected inconveniences and delays when it comes to getting a work visa for New Zealand. Here are several hints that will help you better organize all the necessary documentation as well as pass the process successfully.


If you want to apply for a work visa, you will have to provide either evidence of a current full-time job or a job offer. You should be registered if your profession demands it. You can do this here.


Before you apply for a New Zealand work visa:


  • Ensure your job meets the criteria for minimum wage and salary threshold
  • Ensure the income band of the job meets the criteria.
  • Gather the employer’s documentation, including the fully signed contract. You may also need the employer to show evidence that the job was advertised to the local market, and that it could not be filled by an adequate candidate, depending on whether Shortage List requirements are met.
  • Provide proof of your identity (with a valid passport and a photo of yourself taken within the last six months) and of good character (with police certificates from countries you’ve lived in for more than five years since you turned 17). You may also need to provide medical certificates or a chest X-ray from a doctor approved by Immigration New Zealand (INZ). All documents not in English should be translated into English by a professional translator.
  • Set up a New Zealand Government RealMe account to upload your digital documents for the online application.


Submitting the visa application


Give your application the best chance of success by getting it checked by a licensed practitioner. Seeking expert advice like ours is the best way to ensure your New Zealand work visa application is approved.


If necessary, INZ may ask you for more information to grant you a fair chance to obtain your New Zealand work visa. INZ will let you know about your visa status as soon as it’s decided.


After getting the visa


Once you have your work visa, apply for a tax record number, which you can do through the IRD. You’ll have to give this number to your employer once you have it and use it for all your tax matters.


Be aware of your rights as an employee. 


Once you have all of the above sorted, you will be well on your way to living and working in New Zealand.


Want to Find Out if You Are Eligible for a New Zealand Work Visa?

Fill out our online assessment form right now to get an exhaustive consultation from a professional immigrant adviser.