October 16, 2020

New Zealand Announces Further Border Exceptions

Immigration New Zealand issued a policy outlining some additional exceptions to current border and entry restrictions that will be applicable to certain entrepreneurs and current work visa holders. The exceptions apply only to those who have been living in New Zealand already and are returning to the same role or to continue their work being carried out under an entrepreneur work visa.

What has changed?

Those individuals who are returning to the country to resume the same role or position they were in before leaving, or who are returning to continue running a business as part of their entrepreneur work visa are now permitted to request a border exception. In order to be eligible, they must have:

    • Departed New Zealand between December 1, 2019 and October 9, 2020;
    • Spent a minimum amount of time in New Zealand before their departure; and
    • Be in position of a current entrepreneur, work-to-residence or essential skills visa (mid-skilled or higher) which is not due to expire before January 1, 2021, unless a renewal application was submitted prior to August 9, 2020.

The exception will not apply to those who resigned or were made redundant. Dependent partners and children will also be eligible for an exception request if they still currently hold a dependent visa or held one when they departed the country. Parents or guardians of dependent children born on or after December 1, 2019 can also apply for exceptions on their behalf.

It is estimated that approximately 850 individuals will be eligible to apply and meet the above criteria for the border exception under this new policy.

What you need to do

For further information on entry into New Zealand, please contact the Sterling Lexicon immigration team at immigration@sterlinglexicon.com.

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