If you want to apply for residence as the parent of a New Zealand resident or citizen, you will first need to submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) and then be invited to apply. Once you have received an invitation to apply, you may make a residence application. The Parent Category cannot be applied for without first receiving an invitation to apply.
The Parent Category is a two tier scheme where people can submit an EOI under either tier one or tier two of the category. Tier one has the first priority and has higher income and financial requirements than tier two. Applications lodged under the previous Family Parent Category take second priority. Tier two EOIs and applications are processed only after tier one.
Enough previous Family Parent Category (and the Sibling and Adult Child Category) applications will be processed each year in order to approve residence for about 1,410 people.
Demand for Parent Category residence places currently exceeds the number of places available. A queue is needed to manage Parent Category EOIs because Capped Family categories (which includes the Parent Category) are currently allocated 11,000 places between July 2014 and June 2016 under the New Zealand Government Residence Programme.
The time taken to allocate an EOI/application for processing varies depending on which tier you submit your EOI under, or whether you have an application lodged under the previous Parent Category.
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 are received.
A draw will take place every three months. The number of places available in the draw will depend on the number of places available under the New Zealand Residence Programme.
Once allocated, the average processing timeframe is four to six months, but this can be longer depending on issues that have to be assessed, such as health. Please note that the times given for allocation and decision are indicative only and may be subject to change.
See the results of recent draws.
If you have already lodged a Family Parent Category application before 16 May 2012, your application will be in a separate queue. From July 2014, it is expected that it will take about three years to make an initial assess of all applications lodged under the Parent Category before 16 May 2012.
Timeframes for initial assessments of applications are outlined below.
Date an application was lodged
When to expect an initial assessment
On or before 31 December 2011
Before 1 July 2015
On or before 30 April 2012
Before 1 July 2016
On or after 1 May 2012
After July 2016
Residence applications will need to meet the requirements that were in place on the date they were received by INZ.
Between July 2014 and June 2016, 2,820 places are available under the New Zealand Government Residence Programme for people to be approved residence if they have already made an application under these categories:
If you think you are able to meet the requirements of tier one, you may be eligible to have your application fee waived if you re-apply. You will still need to submit an EOI and pay the EOI fee first. If you are invited to apply, your application fee will be waived. Only people applying under Tier One will be eligible for this fee waiver, not those applying under Tier Two. You will however need to pay the immigration levy.
If your EOI is selected and you are invited to apply for residence (under tier one or two), your medical and police certificates from your current Family Parent Category residence application may still be considered valid for your new application. You will not need to submit a new medical or police certificate with your application. However, an immigration officer may request an updated medical or police certificate if they believe it is necessary.
See if you are eligible.
For more information, please visit our Frequently Asked Questions or Parent Category changes factsheet PDF [41KB].
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