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Thread: Residence visa approved and other matters

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2013

    Default Residence visa approved and other matters

    I got a job in NZ in April of last year. Since my employer was accredited with INZ, I got a 30-month visa pretty quickly. I had do the medical and police clearance among other things. The immigration advisor with my employer suggested that I should also apply for residence under the SMC category. There was the option of applying for Work to Residence, however, it would take longer to process and it would not be approved by the time I join work in July. The SMC route was costly, but it allowed me to use the same medical and police clearance documents that I had submitted with my work visa. Anyway, I applied for the SMC Residence visa in mid-July at the London branch. A case officer was quickly assigned. Sometime in September, that person left INZ and another person took over. This person requested some additional documents, which I provided, and my application was approved in principle in late November of last year. I sent in my passport for getting the Residence visa in early March. I was told they have a queue of 1 month to get the passport stamped. I am awaiting to get my passport as well as all my precious original documents that have been sitting with INZ for over 8 months now. Fairly positive experience with INZ; it is good that the immigration officers are available by email and generally answer promptly. The process appeared quick too (Perhaps because I had a job offer).

    I want to know after I get my residence visa on my passport, do I need to enter NZ with that visa to get it activated. Most other countries have this system. In that case, I will have to plan a trip. I understand that this visa turns into a permanent residence (PR) visa after 2 years (subject to meeting some conditions and applying for the PR visa). From the discussions I have read on this forum, this PR visa is actually permanent. In other countries, the PR status is lost if someone is away from the country for sometime.

    Is there any difference between a PR and citizen, apart from getting a passport? I noticed that a PR can also vote in general elections. Does anyone know the rules for bringing in a partner? If I am on a residence visa, does my partner also need to get a residence visa, or that person can come on a temporary visa and later apply for residence? Thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2008


    If you are in NZ when your Residence is granted, it is activated at once, automatically, and your two years' travel conditions start running then, without your having to do anything extra. You do not need to leave the country and come in again.

    A person’s first day in New Zealand as a resident is either:
    the day their resident visa is granted in New Zealand; or
    the day they are first granted entry permission on the basis of their resident visa, if they were outside of New Zealand when their resident visa was granted.

    I understand that this visa turns into a permanent residence (PR) visa after 2 years (subject to meeting some conditions and applying for the PR visa). From the discussions I have read on this forum, this PR visa is actually permanent.
    Yes, if you apply for PR and meet the conditions in one of the possible ways. Two years is the minimum time to pass - it may take some people longer than that to meet the conditions, depending on their circumstances and what they do. And yes, PR is permanent, as the law stands at the moment.

    Citizenship - have it straight from the NZ government.

    Residents can vote.

    About a partner. INZ defines a partner as someone with whom you can prove a steady and ongoing live-in relationship. What you can apply for to start with varies with the length of partnership you can prove. If your partner is currently not in NZ, which sounds as if it's the case from what you have said, you may well need to look at the requirements for a partner-sponsored temporary work visa, which you can apply for with just a few weeks'/months' proof. Details here. Depending on the nationality of the partner, they may be able to enter NZ as a visitor without many formalities (visa-waiver country), or they may need to apply for a partner-sponsored visitor's visa, see here, in order to set up home with you and start to gather partnership evidence.

    Once you have 12 months' partnership proof, your partner can apply for partner-sponsored Residence.

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