The accreditation process

Before you can invite a worker to apply for an Accredited Employer Work Visa (AEWV) you must apply to us for employer accreditation, advertise the role if you need to, and apply for a Job Check.

Apply for employer accreditation

You can apply for 1 of 4 different levels of accreditation.

  • Standard accreditation is for standard businesses hiring up to 5 migrants.
  • High-volume accreditation is for standard businesses hiring 6 or more migrants.
  • Franchisee accreditation is for businesses that are part of a franchise. There is no limit to how many migrants you can hire.
  • Controlling third party accreditation is for businesses who place migrants with third parties while being the direct employer named in the employment agreement. There is no limit to how many migrants you can hire.

You will pay a fee depending on the type of accreditation you need.

You need to have:

  • an NZBN unless you are a foreign diplomatic mission
  • a business IRD number.

We aim to process complete standard and high-volume applications from compliant employers within 2 weeks.

Check what you need and apply


Most applications are taking longer than 2 weeks to process. Check our wait times page to find up to date information on how long we are taking to process applications. We are working to improve these.

Work visa and employer accreditation wait times

Common topics - Accredited Employer Work Visa (AEWV)

Advertise the role

Before you can apply for a Job Check you may need to advertise to check there are no New Zealand citizens or residents available for the job.

This is a way of giving suitable New Zealanders the chance to apply for work before it is offered to someone from overseas, and making sure employers offer attractive wages to New Zealanders.

You must list the job for at least 2 weeks on a national listing website or channel where suitable New Zealanders are likely to apply, and meet other advertising requirements. Advertising must take place within the 90 days before you submit an application.

You will not need to give evidence of advertising if the job:

Check the Green List

Median wage comparison calculator

What you need to include in the job ad

The job ad needs to show:

  • the job description
  • minimum and maximum pay
  • location
  • minimum hours of work
  • estimated actual earnings if the job pays by piece, commission or there are other rates or bonuses
  • minimum skills, experience and qualifications for the role
  • a pay range that is at least the market rate for that role, and
  • that you pay at least NZD$29.66 an hour (the February 2023 median wage rate), unless the role is on an exemption list.

We will ask you to upload a copy of the job ad and tell us the dates you advertised and the channels you used in the Job Check application.

AEWV roles exempt from paying the February 2023 median wage

Job advertisement guide for accredited employers PDF 543KB

Apply for a Job Check

Once you have accreditation you must apply for a Job Check.

You need to include:

  • a job description
  • an employment agreement
  • the results of any advertising you had to do.

Job Checks are valid for 6 months or until you no longer have accreditation.

We aim to process Job Checks within 2 weeks for straightforward applications. Straightforward applications include all required information and do not need follow up contact from us.

Your Job Check application will take longer than 2 weeks to process if it is:

  • missing information
  • requires follow up contact from us, or
  • for a role that is not a current vacancy.

From 29 October 2023, accredited employers are not allowed to use trial periods in employment agreements when hiring people on an Accredited Employer Work Visa (AEWV). You must commit to this when applying for employer accreditation. If you have a Job Check application in progress with us and it includes an employment agreement with a trial period, we will either decline it or request updated information. 

The 90-day trial rule will not apply to:

  • Job Checks approved before 29 October 2023
  • migrants who already hold, or have applied for, an AEWV based on a Job Check that was approved before 29 October 2023.

We will either decline your Job Check application or ask for updated information if there is a trial period in the employment agreement.

How to apply for a Job Check

Ask the migrant to apply

Once the Job Check is approved, you can ask the migrant to apply for their visa.

You must give them a copy of the employment agreement and a copy of the signed employment offer.

The required experience and qualifications for the job you offer them must match the approved Job Check.

You must send the migrant a request to apply from your Immigration Online dashboard. This sends an email to the migrant with a unique link also known as a job token. The migrant must open the link and accept the request before they can begin their application.

If their visa is approved the migrant can work in the job under the terms of their visa.

We aim to process complete visa applications within 4 weeks.

Accredited Employer Work Visa

Once you are accredited

You must continue to meet your obligations as an AEWV employer during your accreditation.

Meeting your AEWV accredited employer obligations

You must notify us within 10 working days if the key people in your organisation change. You can notify us if your AEWV holder leaves your employment.

Call our employer line if your situation changes or if you are unable to meet your obligations.

Employer line:

0508 967 569

Renew your accreditation

Your initial accreditation lasts for 12 months before you need to renew it.

Once you renew it will last for:

  • 24 months for standard businesses, as long as it has not lapsed for 12 or more months
  • 12 months for franchisees and employers placing migrants with controlling third parties.

When you renew we may ask for evidence you have completed activities you committed to do during the previous accreditation period.


The initial accreditation periods for accredited employers will be automatically extended by 12 months if you apply before 4 July 2023.

Extension for employers accredited under the AEWV system

Help for employers

The employer line is open between 8am and 6pm, Monday to Friday. Call toll-free from NZ landlines only:
0508 967 569