Skilled migrant visa

Skilled Migrant category visa

Please Note:Substantial policy changes from 17.08.2017-Refer to INZ web page for more details

SMC Visa (Skilled Migrant Category) gives you and your eligible accompanying family members the best option to obtain residency status from the Government of New Zealand. This visa gives you the opportunity to live, work and study in New Zealand legally with no time limit, and enjoy all the benefits of a resident of the state. After two years you will be granted permanent residency in New Zealand.Thereafter you can apply for a full Citizenship after holding a Residence-Class visa for 5 years.

The objectives of the visa for New Zealand:

The objective of the Skilled Migrant Category is to provide a resident visa to people who demonstrate that they:

  • have skills to fill identified needs and opportunities in New Zealand;
  • are able to transfer those skills to New Zealand and link with local needs and opportunities;
  • are able to demonstrate an ability to contribute to New Zealand both economically and socially;
  • are able to demonstrate an ability to successfully settle in New Zealand.

In meeting these objectives the Skilled Migrant Category will maximize and accelerate the contribution of immigration to New Zealand’s:

  • capacity building, sustainable growth and innovation.
  • global connectedness;
  • thriving and inclusive communities through focusing on a range of source regions to achieve a balanced program and linking global talent with local opportunities
  • healthy – (including accompanying family).
  • have no substantial criminal record or a refusal / restrictions preventing entry to other countries.
  • show command of the English language and the ability to conduct a conversation.
  • have a profession recognized by the of Immigration Authority of New Zealand and the competent professional authority.
  • have proven professional experience.
  • Principal candidate must be under the age of 55.

A resident visa is the most common choice for people looking to make a long term transition without limitation and call New Zealand a home.
This visa is based on a scoring system. To be eligible to apply you must meet the level set by the Immigration Authority of New Zealand which since October 2016 is 160 points.These points are awarded based on various criteria relating to professional training, work experience, age, partner education, bonus points and personal data.

 EOI selection statistics reveal the following:

  • EOIs with 160 or more points in total that have skilled employment or Master study in New Zealand for more that 2 years will be selected for the residency pathway.Applicants with 160 points without job offer or study of 2 years M.A study will get a work to residence open work visa for 1 year in order to find a job.

Since the process of determining and evaluating the points you are entitled to is complex, we recommend that it will be done with the help of a licensed immigration consultant in order to avoid mistakes and paying out unnecessary sums of money.
Following an initial eligibility assessment we can submit your EOI request (Expression of Interest). If your EOI is accepted by the Immigration Authority, you will be invited to submit an application form for resident visa in New Zealand.
Visa advantages:

  • At the end of the process you get the best visa – a permanent residence visa which gives you all the rights of a resident of New Zealand and at the end of the required period (which starts from the moment of approval) – citizenship and a New Zealand passport.
  • Holders of this visa begin their “New Zealand citizenship count” upon receiving the visa.
  • The process is suitable for those who need a longer time for preparing and organizing the transition.
  • Visa / permit cover the whole family with one application.
  • Whoever receives the visa has a very good chance of finding work in New Zealand.

Please visit the SMC visa time line simulation