The Parent Category requirements and processes have changed. Changes include the introduction of an Expression of Interest (EOI) system and two tiers, each having separate requirements. To gain residence, a person needs to meet the requirements for either tier one or tier two as well as the generic requirements for the category. The previous Parent Category has been closed and the new category opened on 30 July 2012.
Yes, any applications for residence under the Parent Category (which have all the required documentation) that Immigration New Zealand (INZ) accepted for processing on or before 15 May 2012 will be processed. These will need to meet the requirements for the Parent Category that were in place at the time the application was accepted for processing.
Several changes have been made to Parent Category requirements and processes:
It costs NZ$420 to submit a Parent Category EOI. If you are invited to submit an application under the Parent Category, the fee is NZ$930 for applicants in New Zealand and citizens of Australia and the South Pacific. For citizens of all other countries the fee is NZ$1600.
The extra NZ$420 fee for Parent Category EOIs pays for the work INZ undertakes in processing them. This work is separate from the work done in processing Parent Category applications, so INZ needs to charge a separate fee for it.
An EOI system means that a person will need to submit an EOI and be sent an invitation to apply for residence (ITA) before they can make a residence application. EOIs submitted will be entered into a pool and drawn later, depending on the number of places available in the New Zealand Residence Programme. Pool draws will occur every three months. Drawn EOIs will undergo a face-value check before potential applicants are either sent an ITA or have their EOIs declined if it appears they do not meet the residence requirements.
You will need to complete a Parent Category Expression of Interest Form and send it along with the fee to INZ at:
Immigration New ZealandPO Box 276118Auckland Mail CentreAuckland 2241New Zealand
Immigration New ZealandPO Box 276118Auckland Mail CentreAuckland 2241New Zealand
If your form is incomplete or you do not include the correct fee, INZ will not accept your EOI.
Yes. If you are invited to apply for residence, you will need to lodge your residence application within four months of the date of the letter inviting you to apply.
A two-tiered system means that Parent Category EOIs and applications will be divided into two groups. Each of these groups will have different requirements. Tier one EOIs and applications will be prioritised and processed before tier two.
A limited number of EOIs will be drawn every three months, based on their tier and in date order. The number of EOIs will be enough for approximately 1,000 people, depending on the New Zealand Residence Programme.
The two-tiered system for the Parent Category means that tier one EOIs, existing Parent Category applications and tier two EOIs will be assessed in order of priority. Tier one EOIs will be drawn first to fill available places, in date order; if places are available, existing applications (accepted on or before 15 May 2012) will then be processed, also in date order; if further places are available, tier two EOIs will be drawn after this, also in date order.
The queue of tier one EOIs is currently estimated to be six months.
The queue of existing applications lodged under the previous Parent Category, which are not yet under process, is currently estimated to be five years.
The queue of tier two EOIs is currently estimated to be seven years.
This is the approximate length of time it could take for your EOI to be selected from the Pool. These timeframes could change depending on how many tier one EOIs continue to be received. See the updated timeframes.
INZ is limited in the number of resident visas it can grant under the Parent Category each year to approximately 4,000 people. This number is determined by the New Zealand Residence Programme and the number of people approved through other residence categories. Because more people are interested in applying under the Parent Category than the places available, the applications not processed in any year are placed in a queue. It can take some time for an EOI or application to reach the front of the queue.
EOIs are sent to INZ branches via secure mail the week after a draw is made. Depending on the location of the branch it could take up to three weeks for them to receive their allocation. The number of EOIs allocated to a branch depends on the breakdown of EOIs selected from the pool.
It is difficult to predict how long it will take for branches to assess EOIs as the numbers allocated to branches will vary, however it is anticipated that EOIs would be assessed and ITAs issued before the next draw is made.
The two tiers will have some common requirements and some that are specific to each particular tier.
In both tiers, applicants will need to meet common requirements to:
The specific requirements for each tier are outlined below:
Note for settlement funds: Parents applying under tier one of the Parent Category and attempting to meet requirements using settlement funds will need to transfer these funds to New Zealand. INZ requires settlement funds to be transferred through the banking system to ensure the continuous ownership of the funds during the application process. This policy applies to migrants of all nationalities.Applicants from China should note that the settlement funds requirement may be difficult to meet because of local laws and regulations in China. There are no plans to change this policy as it is considered the best way of ensuring the continuous ownership of funds.
The minimum income requirement can be met by personal income gained from a combination of sustained paid employment, regular self-employment and regular investment income, or any one of these sources. To use interest from a term deposit as regular investment income, you need to show that you will receive on-going, regular payments at a sufficient level. Payments must be made at least once a year.
You will need to bring NZ$500,000 to New Zealand from outside New Zealand, whether before or after your application is lodged. Funds can be generated from the sale of assets held outside New Zealand, provided they have been obtained legitimately. Once liquidated, funds must be transferred to New Zealand in accordance with the requirements of the Parent Category. Funds may also be brought to New Zealand before a Parent Category application is made and may be used to buy property in New Zealand, for example. Evidence of the lawful transfer of NZ$500,000 in settlement funds must be provided, however they are used. Funds generated from within New Zealand will not be accepted.
The evidence that is needed will vary for each Parent Category requirement. The evidence will include proof of your relationship to your sponsor, evidence of how you meet the minimum income requirements, evidence you meet English language requirements and evidence that you meet INZ’s health and character requirements. More information on evidential requirements is available in the INZ Operational Manual.
Documented evidence that you can meet the requirements of the Parent Category will need to be provided when you submit an application, not an EOI. You will not need to provide documented evidence with your EOI. When completing an EOI form you will be asked to declare how you meet each of the requirements under the Parent Category for the tier you wish to apply under.
Note: Providing false or misleading information to INZ is an offence under the Immigration Act 2009 and can result in your EOI or application being declined, or you becoming liable for deportation, fined or imprisoned.
You can submit an EOI and enter tier one, provided you meet the requirements at face-value. You will have to pay a NZ$420 fee for the EOI, but the fee for any resulting application will be waived. You will also need to provide a new Parent Category application form and your sponsor will need to complete the new sponsorship form. If you subsequently apply for the Parent Category, your previous application will lapse.
The documents you have already submitted can be used with an application under the new Parent Category instructions, including your medical and police certificate. INZ retains the right to ask for updated medical and police certificate. You will need to provide evidence to show how you meet the new, additional parent category instructions such as English language.
You may be able to make an application under another residence category. New Zealand has several other residence categories which you might consider – these include family-based, skills-based, investment-based, and humanitarian categories. We encourage you to search through the options available.
The Parent Retirement Category is separate from the Parent Category and is not affected by the changes discussed above. However, some changes are also happening to the Parent Retirement Category. Applicants:
INZ generally will not refund an EOI fee once the EOI has been accepted for processing and entered into a queue. This is because a significant amount of work is undertaken and resources used to enter EOIs into the queue.
Yes. The same sponsor income can be used to sponsor both sets of parents. Both sets of parents will need to submit separate Expressions of Interest.
Your parents can submit an EOI before you meet the three-year requirement, however please note that if your parents’ EOI is selected before you are an eligible sponsor, then the EOI will be declined, they will not be invited to apply for residence and will need to start the EOI process again.
For tier one applicants who wish to submit their EOI before their sponsor is eligible, we would advise you not to submit your EOI before your sponsor has been a New Zealand resident for at least two years eight months. If you submit an EOI sooner than this, your EOI is likely to be declined and you will need to start the EOI process again.
You can visit your local INZ branch, or phone:
• 0508 55 88 55 (if you are within New Zealand but outside Auckland), • 09 914 4100 (if you are calling from Auckland), or • +64 9 914 4100 (if you are calling from outside New Zealand).
Note: The Sibling and Adult Child Category closed permanently on 16 May 2012. Please see the FAQs for the Sibling and Adult Child Category for more information about this.