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From 4 July 2022 there are significant changes coming to the NZ Immigration process for hiring migrant workers.

Immigration New Zealand are introducing a new Employer Accreditation. It will become mandatory to be accredited to employ a worker on the Employer Accredited Work Visa (AEWV).

Here is what you need to know about becoming accredited:

What are the different business types?

Standard businesses

For standard business models there are 2 different levels of accreditation depending on how many migrants you want to employ.

  • Standard accreditation — if you want up to 5 migrant workers on AEWVs at any one time.
  • High-volume accreditation — if you want 6 or more migrant workers on AEWVs at any one time.

This only includes migrants being employed after 4 July or renewing their existing Essential Skills Work Visa and will need an Accredited Employer Work Visa (AEWV). Migrants on other visa types (for example working holiday visas) are not counted toward the total migrants you wish to employ.

Franchisees and employers who place migrants with a controlling third party

Employers who place migrants with a controlling third party have stricter requirements to meet. If this is you please get in touch with Woburn International 04 569 4861 or to discuss.

What are the minimum requirements for all business types?

All employers wanting to hire migrants on AEWVs must meet minimum accreditation criteria. This is to ensure only employers who meet New Zealand employment, immigration and business standards have access to migrant workers on AEWVs

So, what are Immigration New Zealand looking for?

  • That you are a viable and genuinely operating business – Your business must be profitable, have positive cashflow of the last 6 months, sufficient capital or external investment and have a plan to ensure your business remains viable. It will be extremely challenging for new businesses to meet the requirements.
  • You have a history of compliance with immigration, employment and business standards – The Labour Inspectorate maintains a list of employers who are subject to a stand-down for breaches of employment standards. Immigration New Zealand can check if an employer, and its key people have not employed a migrant who did not have the right visa or provided false and misleading information to INZ.
  • Employer’s must complete learning modules – You must ensure everyone making recruitment decisions completes Employment New Zealand’s most recent online employer modules on employment rights. Records of this must be kept to show Immigration.
  • Provide settlement support and allow employees to complete learning modules – You must provide migrant workers with work-related settlement information within one month of the employee beginning their employment. You must allow migrant workers time to complete all of Employment New Zealand’s most recent online employee modules on employment rights during paid work hours within one month of the AEWV holder starting employment. Records of this must be kept to show Immigration. Talk to Woburn for Settlement Information support.

How long does the accreditation last?

  • When approved for the first time an employer will receive accreditation for 12 months.
  • Standard business will get accreditation for 24 months when they renew.
  • Franchisees and employers placing migrants on AEWVs with controlling third parties will only ever get 12 months.

What do you have to do to maintain your accreditation?

Immigration may do checks during the accreditation period to ensure you still meet the accreditation requirements. You will need to have good record keeping practices in place and ensure your staff always hold relevant visas to work for your company. You also have the option to upgrade from standard accreditation to high-volume if you find you need more migrant workers.

How can Woburn help?

We know what Immigration New Zealand are looking for to ensure a company is viable, genuine and compliant with immigration, employment and business standards. We can review your policies in place to ensure they meet Immigration requirements and ensure the process is straightforward and stress free.

Don’t get caught out from being able to employ migrants in future by not seeking professional help for your accreditation application. For the best advice and assistance, contact us today, on 04 569 4861 or