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Positive changes for NZ’s Essential Skills Visa (from 19 July 2021)

The Immigration Minister announced that from Monday 19 July, the maximum duration of Essential Skills visas for jobs paid below the median wage, will increase from 12 months to 24 months.

In addition to the extended duration announcement, the application process for Essential Skills visas will also be simplified for workers remaining in their current roles:

  • Employers will not be required to complete a labour market test where a worker is applying for a visa for a full time role which the worker already holds. (A labour market test will still be required where employers are filling a job vacancy to prove there are no New Zealanders available before a migrant worker can be hired).
  • The worker won’t need to provide medical and police certificates to Immigration New Zealand if that information has been supplied previously.

The new Accredited Employer Work Visa, which was due to come into effect on 1 November, will be delayed until the middle of next year. An update will be provided as soon as an exact date is confirmed.

To read the full release from the NZ Government, click here.

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