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Accredited Employer Work Visa

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Accredited Employer NZ

Employer Accreditation is an important international recruitment and retention tool for any New Zealand employer. Many of our clients have utilised this policy to realise the significant benefits associated with this status.

In essence, gaining accreditation entails completion of immigration formalities even before you recruit. Therefore as long as your candidate fits into the criteria, Immigration New Zealand is deemed to have given you pre-approval to recruit. Hence, you not only save on expenses likely to be incurred on the recruitment process but also stand to mitigate the risk of not having been able to select the right candidate for your business, from Immigration point of view.

A brief overview of accreditation has been mentioned below.

Definition of an ‘accredited employer’

An accredited employer is a New Zealand employer who has had an application for accreditation to employ persons under the Talent (Accredited Employers) Work Instructions approved by INZ.

Objective

The objective of the Talent (Accredited Employers) Work Instructions is to allow accredited employers to supplement their own New Zealand workforce in their core area of business activity through:

  1. the recruitment of workers who are not New Zealand citizens or residence class visa holders whose talents are required by the employer; and
  2. the accredited employer having direct responsibility for those employees and their work output.

Benefits

If your business has a regular need for overseas skilled workers, obtaining Accredited Employer status from Immigration New Zealand (INZ) could streamline what is often a laborious process in the pursuit of your potential employee being issued a work visa. The policy provides for a temporary multiple-entry 30 month Work Visa which has the potential to lead to permanent residence as part of the Work to Residence category. The most significant benefit for an employer holding accredited status is to not having to illustrate whether a New Zealander can do the work – this is often an expensive and time-consuming task. This category enjoys faster processing timeframes with less documentation.

How to become an accredited employer

During the assessment of your accreditation application, Immigration New Zealand will need to be satisfied that your business has:

  • A sound financial position;
  • Good human resource practices;
  • Good workplace practices;
  • Commitment to train and employ New Zealanders.

Requirements under immigration instructions

To be eligible to be employed by an accredited employer, an overseas person must:

  • be aged 55 years or under;
  • meet immigration health and character requirements; and
  • be a bona fide applicant intending to comply with their visa conditions.

Offers of employment by an accredited employer to an overseas person must be:

  • for genuine employment in New Zealand in the capacity or position stated;
  • for employment in the accredited employer’s core area of business activity, and for which the accredited employer will have direct responsibility for the employee’s work output;
  • for a position with a minimum salary of NZ$79560 (based on a 40 hour week and not including any employment-related benefits like uniforms or medical insurance);
  • for at least 24 months;
  • for full-time employment i.e., amounting to, on average, at least 30 hours per week;
  • current at the time the work visa application is assessed by INZ, and at the time the overseas person is granted a multiple entry visa;
  • compliant with relevant employment law in New Zealand, including a written employment agreement that contains the necessary statutory specified terms and conditions, meet holiday and special leave requirements and other minimum statutory criteria and occupational safety and health obligations; and
  • when submitted to INZ, accompanied by evidence of full or provisional registration (or of eligibility for registration) if registration is required by law for that person to take up the offer.

The documentation required to apply for accreditation is relatively extensive, but we can provide you with advice on the entire process and assist you in getting accreditation. If you would like to discuss the possibility of your business becoming an accredited employer, what it involves or whether you qualify, please email at contact@nzimmigration.info or call us today on +64 9 379 0219

FAQ’s

The minimum requirements are:

  • New Zealand Business Number (NZBN)
  • Genuine Business (which means business is registered with Inland Revenue (IRD) and that the business should be profitable)
  • No recent history of regulatory non-compliance
  • If you have standard accreditation, you will be subject to a job quota of up to 5
  • Minimise risk of exploitation (which means migrant workers and people making recruitment decisions should complete Employment New Zealand’s online modules for knowing employment rights)

The documents required are:

  • New Zealand Business Number (NZBN)
  • IRD registration of the employer
  • Financial documents of the business showing profitability before depreciation and tax or positive cash flow or sufficient capital or plans to show viability of the business
  • Evidence that all recruitment costs in New Zealand and outside are paid.
  • Evidence that Employment New Zealand online modules are completed by the migrant workers and who make recruiting decisions

In addition to the above, if you want to hire 6 or more migrants on an AEWV, you must demonstrate a commitment to improving pay and conditions for all employees over time. To show this all jobs must either pay at least 10% more than the minimum wage at the beginning, or be covered by a collective agreement.

In addition to the documents mentioned in point 4 and/or 5, franchise employers must have been operating for at least 12 months, and have a history of hiring New Zealand workers

In addition to the documents mentioned above you must place AEWV workers in compliant businesses.  You should also be able to demonstrate:

  • That you have effective mechanisms in place to monitor on-site employment and safety
  • Have a 12-month track record of placing employees with controlling third parties
  • That at least 15% of your full-time employees who are placed with controlling third parties are New Zealanders

The job check verifies that the position pays the market rate, that the terms and conditions are in compliance with New Zealand employment laws and regulations, and that you have completed an LMT, if necessary.

Employers need to apply for a job check for each position that they intend to fill with a migrant worker. A migrant worker on an AEWV can only be hired for a job if it has passed the job check. A job check is paid for by the employer.

INZ will check the Labour Market Test (LMT) result.  It is a check done to ensure that there are no New Zealand citizens or residents available for the job by advertising.  LMT shows that an employer has advertised the job vacancy, have listed it with Ministry of Social Development (MSD) if the salary for the same is not below median wage and that suitable New Zealanders had a fair chance of applying for this position.

The fees are NZD $2130 per application cost. The employer must be a New Zealand employer in New Zealand to apply.

When accreditation is approved initially, the duration of the accreditation is 12 months. Franchisees and employers who place migrants on AEWVs with controlling third parties will be accredited for further 12 months at the renewal.

The LMT helps INZ to guarantee that New Zealanders get priority in the job market ahead of AEWV applicants /migrant workers. The LMT ensures that there are no New Zealand citizens or residents available for the job by advertising.

To confirm if a business is genuine the following will be required:

  • Business is registered with Inland Revenue (IRD)
  • Business has sound financial position (considering profitability, cash flow, sufficient capital etc.)
  • If partnership or sole trader, they must not be bankrupt or subject to No Asset Procedure (INZ does automated checks with Insolvency Register)

Yes, all recruitment costs in and outside New Zealand are paid for by the New Zealand employer. For in-depth details on the new employer accreditation and work visa please refer this link from Immigration New Zealand.

With so many minute details and intricacies it is understandable to get cluttered in your thoughts and processes of such applications. That is why, we, at Team Immigration Advisers New Zealand are here to assist you through the visa application process for new employer accreditation and work visas.

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