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Introduction of Migrant Exploitation Protection WORK Visa (MEPV)

Migrant Exploitation Protection Work Visa

What do you need to know?

Effective 1st July 2021, Immigration New Zealand has introduced a new visa called the Migrant Exploitation Protection Visa (MEPV). It is an open work visa that will enable migrant workers to leave exploitative employment situations quickly where the migrant makes a report of exploitation that is assessed as credible.

What is Migrant Exploitation?

Migrant exploitation is behaviour that causes or increases the risk of material harm to the economic, social, physical or emotional well-being of a migrant worker. This includes breaches of minimum employment standards or breaches of health and safety and immigration laws.

Common types of exploitation 

You may be a victim of exploitation if you:

  • don’t have the written employment agreement/contract
  • have to give back part or all of your wages to your employer
  • are made to work for an excessive number of hours, with no breaks
  • are not paid for public holidays or annual leave

Anyone who sees or suspects a breach of minimum employment rights can report it to Employment New Zealand.

How to apply for MEPV?

  • Before applying for this visa, the migrant must have his/her report of exploitation assessed by Employment New Zealand and have been given a Report of Exploitation Assessment Letter issued by MBIE. The MEVP application must be lodged within one month of reporting your exploitation along with the letter.

  • Applicants for a MEPV and their partners or dependents are not required to pay fees or provide medical or police certificates with their application (unless requested by INZ). They are exempt from the requirement to pay an application fee, immigration levy or the International Visitor, Conservation and Tourism Levy. A new offer of employment or evidence of funds or sponsorship is not required.

What is the currency of the MEVP visa and conditions?

  • A MEPV will be granted for 6 months or for the duration remaining on the migrant’s current visa, whichever is shorter. A MEPV will allow the migrant to work for any employer.

  • Holders of a visa granted under these instructions are not eligible to apply for a further MEPV visa based on the same report of exploitation.

What about the Partners and children of MEPV holders?

Partners and dependent children who already hold a visa based on their relationship to a person granted a MEPV may be eligible for a further visa of the same type. They will have to lodge a separate application and cannot be included in the principle migrant’s application and cannot be included in the principle migrant’s application.

To know more about this visa category, please email Immigration Advisers New Zealand Ltd. Our team of experienced and licensed immigration advisers is here to assist and navigate you on all your immigration-related queries and confusions. Please get in touch with us by sending an email at contact@nzimmigration.info or call on +64 09 3790219.

Author Details

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Vandana Rai

(LIA 201400900)

Vandana Rai is a Senior Licensed Immigration Adviser and has built a reputation around her rare set of skills, which could be considered ideal for her legal profession.

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