UPDATE: 5th May 2020
There are a few developments as they have occurred as follows:
1) INZ Operations under Alert Level 3
As everyone is aware that DNZI LTDposted latest updates regarding INZprocesses on 20th April 2020 updating everyone is to what progress INZ has made amid COVID 19.
This is the second week New Zealand entered Alert Level 3 in the response to COVID-19.
It is important to be aware that for Immigration New Zealand, most of their operations remain the same as they did under Level 4.
There have been no immediate changes to the border restrictions or visa processing priorities although INZ will soon start processing a wider range of visa applications.
INZ is now allowing a limited number of staff to re-enter onshore visa offices at Alert Level 3, starting with the National Documentation Office.
Some staff are currently working remotely, however, INZ’s ability to process visa applications is significantly reduced.
INZ are now able to safely collect some paper applications from their National Application Document Office, however, all processing remains focused on visa categories that have been prioritised.
INZ is not currently processing any paper applications from people onshore however this will change over the coming weeks as INZ’s staff are able to re-enter offices at ALERT LEVEL 2.
We understand there are many migrants who are waiting on visa applications in other categories and will be anxious for more information on when INZ can expect their visa to be processed.
We don’t know the answer to this at this stage however we can assure you that we shall update you all to provide more certainty of the processes as soon as possible.
2) What’s Ahead at ALERT LEVEL 2
INZ’s anticipates bringing in more staff to be able to return to the office under Alert Level 2 which will enable them to commence processing some paper-based applications.
INZ is committed to ensuring that they keep us and every one up to date with any new information /decisions they are making.
There are a lot of unknowns at the moment, not just in the immigration space but in New Zealand’s the economy and labour market as a whole and this has an impact on our business which is why the NZ Government is granting itself stronger visa law powers for next 12 months.
Migrants have lost jobs, lost homes and their daily lives not knowing what is around the corner for them. This news will and should bring a relief to all migrants who have been negatively been affected by COVID19.
As you can appreciate, we are patiently awaiting more directions from respected authorities and how to prioritise our work and assist you all.
3) Border updates
As of 30th April 2020, INZ has now received 5,962 expressions of interest (EOI) from people who believe they meet exceptions to the border closure.
Of the 5,838 EOIs decided so far, 1,231 meet the criteria and have been invited to apply for a visa.
The New Zealand border currently remains closed to all but New Zealand citizens and residents.
There are a limited number of exceptions for other travellers, however, he/she should seek approval from Immigration New Zealand before travelling.
4) What’s happening to OFFSHORE OFFICES
All offshore offices remain closed. At present moment INZ does not know as to when they will be in a position to reopen their offshore offices, however, they are continually reviewing the respected local market conditions they based individual countries to determine when they may be able to reopen.
INZ is not currently processing any applications from people who are offshore unless they meet the strict criteria to be granted an exception to the Border closure.
5a) Student Visa Holders Amid COVID 19
At the present moment, Student Visa holders can no longer enter New Zealand. Exceptions to the border closure can be made by Immigration New Zealand for exceptional circumstances.
As you all are aware that Educational facilities are closed due to New Zealand’s current COVID-19 Alert Level, student visa holders cannot attend classes in person.
However, students are expected to study online or remotely. You must contact us or your education provider urgently to discuss your learning arrangements.
We are aware that Online Attendance will be recorded.
5b) Student Visa changes to support Essential Services
Changes have been made to relax visa restrictions for some visa holders to work in essential services to support New Zealand’s response to COVID-19.
Students currently employed in an essential services role, or by supermarkets or the healthcare sector, will be able to work for more than 20 hours in certain circumstances.
If this applies to you and you want to work more than 20 hours, you will need to discuss your plans with your education provider as you still must meet the study requirements of your student visa.
6) Visa processing
As re-iterated earlier in the post of 20th April 2020, INZ is continuing to process urgent COVID-19 related applications including applications from individuals who have a critical purpose for coming to New Zealand.
INZ continues to prioritise the following visa categories:
* Temporary visa applications for Victims of Domestic Violence
* Partnership category temporary visas (including reassessments)
* Full fee-paying student visas
* Post-study work visas
* Exceptions to border restrictions
INZ will also take into account any impacts on an individual’s employment history as a result of COIVD-19 during the assessment of any future applications and decisions will be made on a case by case basis based on their individual circumstances.
At this moment INZ is unable to give any long term certainty to migrants on temporary visas at this time as there are a number of unknowns.
For this very reason, the New Zealand Government has considered temporary pragmatic solutions to immigration challenges requesting for granting them exceptional powers for the next 12 months. Details are stated below.
7) Temporary Pragmatic Solutions To Immigration Challenges Under COVID-19
As you may already be aware that the Government has made an announcement of the introduction of an Immigration (Covid19 Response) Amendment Bill to parliament.
The Bill will introduce a decision making framework that would enable the Minister to get around the current operational policies. As you are aware of the current problems that INZ are facing in dealing with individual applications due to the COVID 19.
Following the perusal of the information so far made available to us, it appears that these powers will be used for the benefit of migrants, not their detriment.
The proposals may relate to classes of people rather than individuals.
The proposed changes will take effect on 15 May 2020.
A brief summary of the information released by MBIE is enclosed herein at the bottom of this post.
8) DNZI Appointments
At this moment, DNZI is unable to confirm any appointments. However, if you wish to meet us either at HAMILTON or AUCKLAND BRANCH, please text Hema on 0211361167. We shall note your details and thereafter contact you the moment NZ Government is able to give us an indication as to when we all are permitted to return to our Offices. This is highly likely to take place at Alert Level 2.
DNZI are preparing to reopen our branches at Covid-19 Alert Level 2 – meaning that we are hard at work preparing for your return!
Your health is our number one priority and we can assure you that DNZI has put in place robust health and sanitisation practices to ensure you feel safe. Detailed instructions will be relayed to individuals upon confirmation of their appointments.
ALL OUR CONSULTATIONS ARE FREE OF CHARGE
Important Notice Regarding Self Isolation
Self-isolation rules and any other government health measures must be obeyed at all times.
New visa conditions: We have been informed that Visa holders who do not comply with instructions from a Health Officer can be detained and deported.
For more information, you may contact or visit the Ministry of Health’s website.
0800 358 5453 | Healthline
Self-isolation guidance | Ministry of Health
UPDATE: 20th April 2020
We continue to work remotely from home and are open to take any queries you may have regarding Immigration New Zealand. You may contact via text or call to HEMA PAREKH SINGH on 0211361167 or email her on email@example.com. Zoom Meeting or Skype can be arranged at the present moment as well.
What we know till date as of 20th April 2020:
IS IMMIGRATION NEW ZEALAND (INZ) PROCESSING VISA APPLICATIONS?
INZ is continuing to process certain types of applications being:
Student visa applications
Partnership Visa applications ( including reassessments)
Pending Post Study Work Visa applications
Visa applications for Victims of Domestic Violence
EXPRESSION OF INTEREST AND OTHER POOL DRAWS
* EOI and other pool draw will remain suspended until further notice and this will be decided by INZ as to when the next draw will take place.
Visa validity periods 2 April 2020 and 9 July 2020
Temporary permit holders whose Visa expire between the following periods, 2 April 2020 and 9 July 2020, have been automatically can be extended by INZ until 25th September 2020. These include:
* Visitor Visa
* Work Visa of any Category
* Student Visa
* Interim Visa
* Limited Visa
MIGRANTS OFF SHORE HOLDING A TEMPORARY VISA ( with an expiry date of entry to New Zealand)
If a person is OFFSHORE and they may apply to to extend the entry date on their visa and their family’s visas. The individual person/s will need to use INZ form 1020.
The respected person/a will need to send the form and passport to the nearest Visa Application Center: https://www.vfsglobal.com/newzealand/
Updates on Travel Restriction & Self Isolation, you may visit INZ Website or contact MSD.
IRRESPECTIVE OF THE ABOVE:
We encourage clients to provide and submit all documentation via email to us and allow us to start preparing for the lodgement of the applications.
We understand and anticipate that once work resumes to normality, INZ will be receiving and processing the influx of cases which may be queued as they are received, so therefore our recommendation is to provide us as many documents as possible to allow us to check them. These documents can be emailed on or firstname.lastname@example.org.
IS YOUR EMPLOYMENT AFFECTED IN ANY WAY:
Despite INZ’s leniency amid COVID 19
if your Employment has been affected in any way you must contact us so that we can guide you accordingly as to what steps need to be taken and if a Variation of Condition is possible or not.
It is pivotal that INZ is updated at all times with any change of circumstances.
ONCE AGAIN YOU MAY CONTACT HEMA ANYTIME ON:
0211361167 (text or call)
Arranged Zoom or Skyped Meeting
We are all in this together and will continue to support you.
Thank you all and be safe!!!!