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New Zealand: Accredited Employer Work Visa

New “3-check” Work Visa policy – Old Work Visa streams replaced by the new Accredited Employer Work Visa (AEWV)

The Government is introducing a new temporary work visa called the Accredited Employer Work Visa (AEWV). The Accredited Employer Work Visa will be introduced on 1 November 2021 and will replace six of the existing
temporary work visa categories.

The system will require 3 checks before an employer can hire a migrant worker.

1. Every employer need accreditation*
2. The job check
3. The migrant worker check.

Employer accreditation

There are two types:

  • Standard accreditation for those employers employing less than 5 work visa holders;
  • High-volume Accreditation – for those employers employing over 5 work visa holdes.

* employers can apply for accreditation from late September.

The Job Check

Employers will pay for this and they can only hire a migrant worker if the job check has been passed. The job check will confirm the job pays the market rate, the terms and conditions comply with New Zealand employment laws, and the employer has done a labour market test if required.

  • For jobs paying below median wage, the labour market test will include lodging the vacancy with MSD.
  • In cities, jobs that are on the skills shortage list and paying over the median will not need a labour market
  • For those jobs paying over twice the median wage, no labour market check required either.

Migrant worker check

This is the last step in the new AEWV process and can be paid for by the migrant or employer. In this step, the migrant must show that they meet all visa requirements, including having the skills and experience as stipulated by the empoloyer in the employer’s job check application.

These changes were originally signalled by INZ some 18 months ago and will have a number of impacts on employers and their migrant workers.

If you or someone you know is planning to apply for a new employer-assisted work visa in the near future, please contact our team to explore your options before the new employer-led visa application process kicks in.