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Thread: Immigration with dependants

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2024
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    UK
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    Default Immigration with dependants

    Hello all,

    I would be grateful for some advice about moving the whole family from the UK to NZ.
    My wife and I have started to look into moving to NZ and various visa options. We've got 3 primary school age children, and at the moment I am the sole earner in the family, so for moving, it looks like it will be an STR/SMC for me, and 4 dependents visas for the Mrs and the kids.

    I'm qualified for a green list job (albeit, I haven't practiced it for several years). The most obvious option seems to be an STR visa based on a green list job offer + 4 resident visas for the family: this provides the kids with access to education, and secures healthcare for the whole family. However, there's 2 issues that I can foresee:
    1) STR expected timeline is 4 months and I need a job offer to apply for the visa. Here in the UK it is very unlikely that an employer will wait that long for you to start work - is it more common in NZ for employers to wait for several months?
    2) What makes it even worse, STR is 4 months, but dependents visas are listed as 9 months. If I apply for all 5 at once, will they be on the same timeline? E.g. that my visa may take up to 9 months too?

    I'm not open to moving to NZ for half a year alone, so if there are any better options for getting the dependents over, I'd be grateful if you let me know about them.

    I am aware of the SMC, which, as far as I understand, provides the same benefits as STR, but can apply to any job offer not on the Green list. From reviewing the points system, I qualify for full 6 points either on skills, or on pay, so SMC (if I understand it correctly) looks like an option, but I still have the same issues with bringing the dependents over. I can't find the timelines for SMC on the website, but the process requires submitting an EOI - to me this sounds like a longer timeline than STR.
    Is my SMC understanding correct?

    Thank you.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Location
    New Zealand (ex: South Africa)
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    1,233

    Default

    A few things:

    • The Straight to Residence Visa is given processing priority over the Skilled Migrant Category Resident Visa (see SR1.1(c)).
    • Most primary applicants are able to include their partner and dependent children in their application for a residence class visa: see R2.1. If this applies to you, there will be no need to apply for separate residence class visas for your partner and your dependent children: you would simply include them in your application. Additionally, note that if your partner and dependent children are not declared in your residence class visa application, any future application for a residence class visa under the Family Category is likely to be declined (see F2.5(e) and F5.1(c)).
    • If your future employer is not prepared to wait until your Straight to Residence Visa is granted, you may need to consider the Accredited Employer Work Visa as a stepping stone (been there, done that myself, although in my case this was an older Work Visa category that is now closed). Your partner and dependent children would need separate temporary entry class visas: usually, this would be the Partner of a Worker Work Visa for the partner and either the Dependent Child Student Visa or the Child of a Worker Visitor Visa for the dependent children (which one of the two usually depends on whether or not the child in question is of school going age).
    • For the Skilled Migrant Category, submitting an Expression of Interest is no longer relevant -- this was for the previous criteria, no longer in effect since 9 October 2023.


    Another strategy (that I have seen some Licensed Immigration Advisors promoting recently) is to apply for Australian permanent residence visas instead: provided that there are no character issues, holding one of these entitles one to the grant of an Australian Resident Visa at the New Zealand border.

    If, after considering all the factual information that I have provided you, you are still unsure of which pathway is best for you, I would recommend engaging the services of a Licensed Immigration Advisor: they can provide you with advice tailored to your specific circumstances and needs, and this forum is legally prohibited from providing that level of support. The good ones do not come cheap, but my advice here is to consider whether the cost of getting things wrong is greater.
    Last edited by Kelerei; 24th May 2024 at 10:58 AM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2024
    Location
    UK
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    Default

    Thank you very much.
    Immigration Advisor will certainly be very useful, but at a later stage I think. It makes sense to go to them with a list of questions prepared. Right now it's all about trying to find out as much information as I can and making a plan. And selling off whatever I can / don't need to reduce the volume of my possessions in the meantime. Softly, softly, catchee monkey.

    If SMC and STR end result is the same, this really opens up the non-green-list jobs for me, which is great. However, the government website still seems to require an EOI. Has anyone here applied for an SMC since 9 Oct 23?

    In regard to family members, I've read those paragraphs, but my understanding was that by "including" them in the application, it just meant submitting 4 more visa applications at the same time. I see that instead, I just include them on my application, which resolves the timing issue. Do you know if there is still ~$3k fee per head for including dependants on my form, as it would be with separate visa applications?

    Work visa + separate visas for family: it looks like the children will still be eligible for state-funded schooling (great). Is healthcare eligibility the main difference between residence and work visa? [Ignoring anything to do with house purchases, as I'll have to rent for a few months regardless of the type of visa). Did you use your work visa purely to get the foot across the border, and then applied for resi as soon as you were there?

    Thanks!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2024
    Location
    UK
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    PS I also note that work visa is linked to a job, which is quite unpleasant, while residence is not. But if SMC residence can be applied for on day 1 in NZ and granted within 4 months, then the job link is not that relevant, imho.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    Re: eligibility for health care, see here. https://www.govt.nz/browse/health/pu...alth-services/ If you are granted a work visa with a duration of two years, you and your family will be covered (depending on meeting certain criteria in particular cases, but generally, you're in)

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
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    New Zealand (ex: South Africa)
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    Quote Originally Posted by wholelotashakin View Post
    Did you use your work visa purely to get the foot across the border, and then applied for resi as soon as you were there?
    The Skilled Migrant Category had a very different points system back in 2018/19 than it does today: 160 points required, and awarded for a plethora of attributes. However, very few could attain 160 points without skilled employment in New Zealand, and I was one of the many who needed skilled employment in New Zealand to meet the 160 point threshold, so for me it was a matter of obtaining skilled employment in New Zealand and then applying for a Work Visa to start working in that employment -- shortly thereafter, the Skilled Migrant Category Resident Visa process was set into motion. I was fortunate in that, after my EOI was selected and the application itself was lodged, it was processed and granted in 2 months: a lot of people had processing times of over a year back then (hence applying for the Work Visa first).

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2024
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    UK
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    Thank you very much.

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