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Parent residence category reopens February 2020

Parent residence category reopens February 2020

New Zealand parent category to reopen in February 2020

After being ‘paused’ for almost 3 years, the parent category reopens in February 2020. New Zealand residents will be able to sponsor their parent(s) to come over and become residents themselves. Exact policy has not been released yet but it will be capped at 1,000 applicants/year and there will be requirements of guaranteed minimum income from the New Zealand child who sponsors their parents.

What changes?

The New Zealand Government is reopening the Parent resident visa category in February 2020. The requirements will differ from current policy, with the first selection scheduled for May 2020. Applicants will not be able to submit expressions of interest (EOIs) from 7 October 2019 to February 2020, while new policy is being finalised.

What are the new requirements?

An annual quota

When the parent category reopens in February 2020, it will be capped at 1,000 residence places per year.

Old criteria removed

Under current policy there are two tiers. The changes will remove Tier Two. Also, the visa applicant’s income will no longer be considered: both settlement funds and guaranteed income are removed.

New criteria implemented

The new key criteria will involve sponsorship from the New Zealand child (and their partner if applicable). Their annual income will be used to determine whether they can sponsor their parents for a residence application. The threshold will depend on the sponsor’s yearly income (or combined income with the partner, if in a relationship).

RatioIncome thresholds
1 sponsor / 1 parent2 x median salarycurrently NZD $106,080
1 sponsor / 2 parents3 x median salarycurrently NZD $159,120
Sponsor +  partner / 1 parent3 x median salarycurrently NZD $159,120
Sponsor +  partner / 2 parents4 x median salarycurrently NZD $212,160
Applicant’s guaranteed lifetime incomeNo longer used for eligibility
Settlement fundsNo longer used for eligibility
Applicants must still meet the acceptable standards for health and character

What happens if I have an EOI in the queue?

If your EOI has not yet been selected as of 7 October 2019, it will be assessed under the new policy once selected. It will also be selected based on the time it was submitted.

You should receive a notification from Immigration New Zealand shortly and be offered to update or withdraw your Expression of Interest, and claim a fee refund if you do not meet the new policy criteria.

What happens if my application is being processed?

If your EOI has been selected and your application is being processed, it will be assessed based no policy at the time of the EOI selection.

I no longer qualify… what can I do?

If you have an EOI in the queue, you can contact INZ and ask for a fee refund.

Other visa options include the parent retirement category (which requires investment) and the grandparent visitor visa.

Questions? Drop us a line!

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