NEW 2021 Resident Visa

We want to use this opportunity to let you know that on 30 September 2021, Immigration New Zealand announced a new one-off residence category, "2021 Resident Visa". The purpose of this Visa is to provide eligible migrants with the opportunity to remain in New Zealand permanently.

An applicant will be eligible if the person has been in New Zealand on 29 September 2021. In addition, the applicant must hold or have applied for, and granted subsequently, one of the eligible visas.

Applicants also need to meet ONE among the following criteria: ('settled' criteria) live in New Zealand for a period of three or more years; OR ('skilled' criteria) have earnings that are at or above the median wage ($27 per hour); OR (‘scarce’ criteria) worked in a role on the scarce list. An applicant is required to meet one of the above-listed criteria only. That means that once you're employed, for example, as a dairy cattle farm worker (‘scarce’ criteria - role in primary sector), you're not expected to be paid $27+ as an hourly rate or live in New Zealand for three or more years.


The eligible applicants are people who held on 29 September the types of visas listed below and some holders of Critical Purpose Visa (for six months or more) arriving in New Zealand any time between 30 September 2021 and 31 July 2022.

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 Visas (CPVV):

Critical health workers for longer term roles (6 months or longer), and

Other critical workers for long term roles (more than 6 months).


Please click HERE, Scarce List will open in a new window.


There will be no age requirement (age cap).


Eligible applicants are permitted to include their partners and dependent children in their applications, irrespective of where they are based, whether in New Zealand or offshore. However, partners are expected to meet the 12 months requirement of 'living together in a genuine and stable relationship.'


There is no requirement to provide evidence of English language ability.


If you have provided a medical certificate within the last 36 months and were assessed as having an acceptable standard of health, you will not need to provide a further medical certificate. If you have not provided a medical certificate within the last 36 months, or your health has changed, or you were previously assessed as not having an acceptable standard of health, you must provide a new limited medical certificate. Applicants are not required to get overseas police certificates unless there are specific concerns. INZ will request a New Zealand Police check on the applicant's behalf.


The total of cost of the 2021 Resident Visa will be $2,160 including GST.


2021 Resident Visa applications can be submitted online. The submission of all 2021 Resident Visa applications will be open for applications in two phases.

Phase 1: beginning from 1 December 2021, those who have submitted a Skilled Migrant Category (SMC) or Residence from Work (RFW) application and those applicants with dependent children 17 years or older who have an SMC Expression of Interest (EOI) submitted can begin the application.

Phase 2: from 1 March 2022, every other eligible applicant, including those in the SMC Expression of Interest pool, can apply.


Like many other resident types of applications, you are required to have a valid temporary visa during the period that your application for the 2021 Resident Visa is being processed.


Please follow the link below to check if you are eligible to apply for the 2021 Resident Visa.



We have provided information on this page to serve as a guidance only based on our understanding of information that was made available to date by the New Zealand government. We encourage you to contact Immigration New Zealand for a detailed information or establish your eligibility.


We will be glad to provide you with immigration advice related to the 2021 Resident Visa. Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions about the 2021 Resident Visa.


Please fill out our contact form below.
Our licensed immigration adviser will contact you as soon as possible to discuss your eligibility.

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