Work to residence – Tier 2

To be eligible to apply for residence with a Green List Tier 2 role, an applicant must have worked in a Tier 2 role in New Zealand for at least 24 months, and within the 30 months immediately prior to lodging their residence application. This period of work does not have to be obtained in consecutive months, or in the same Green List role, and it can also include any parental leave undertaken. Work comprising a Green List role and a highly-paid role can also be combined to achieve the required 2 years. Only work experience gained in New Zealand after 29 September 2021 can be counted, and so the earliest a Tier 2 residence application can be lodged will be 29 September 2023.

At the time of lodging their residence application the applicant must hold an Accredited Employer Work Visa or another work visa (eg; Essential Skills) applied for before 4 July 2022, and must have existing employment for a role on the Tier 2 list.

The role title does not need to exactly match that which is shown in the Green List, as it is the main tasks which are actually undertaken in the role which finally determines whether the role is a match to the Green List role. In considering these tasks Immigration New Zealand will refer to the ANZSCO occupation classification for the role, and the relevant tasks which are listed must comprise the majority of the applicant’s actual role in order for the roles to match.

An applicant must also have the pre-requisite requirements listed for that role on the Green List. These requirements are very specific to each particular role. For instance, most of the medical roles only require the appropriate New Zealand medical registration, however many other roles require either a named qualification, or a comparable qualification with additional requirements such as specific knowledge requirements and/or support from a professional association. Some overseas qualifications can be directly recognised because they are already identified within Immigration Instructions however if this is not the case an assessment of comparability must be obtained from the New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA). The electrician and plumber roles require vocational registration, while the dairy farmer roles require 3 years of relevant experience working on a commercial farm.

It must be appreciated that there is no ability to compromise on the stated requirements and applicants must take care to ensure they match these “to the letter” before progressing an application.

The Government has advised that Care Workers will be added to the Tier 2 list in due course and that such workers must be working full time (30 hours pw) and be paid at least $28.25 ph (Level 4 rate). Applicants will need to complete 2 years of work experience at this rate (or higher), and from after 29 September 2021 (we await further details/requirements to be published).

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