Meeting the criteria

The criteria and evidence below will provide you with the information you need to meet the requirements.

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Identity

You must provide proof of your identity

  • 1 acceptable photo if you apply online, or 2 photos if you use a paper application.
  • Your passport or certificate of identity.
  • A copy of your full birth certificate if you apply online, or your original, full birth certificate or a certified copy if you use a paper application form.

 

Acceptable photos

If you apply online, you must upload a copy of your passport. After you’ve applied, we’ll tell you when to send us your passport.

If you use a paper application form, you may send us your passport, or a certified copy. If you provide a certified copy, we’ll tell you when to send us your passport.

Character

You must be of good character

You may need to provide police certificates as proof of your good character.

If you're aged 17 and over and will stay in New Zealand for more than 24 months, you must provide police certificates from:

  • your country(s) of citizenship
  • any other country where you’ve spent 12 months or more over the last 10 years, even if you didn’t spend that 12 months all in one visit

You don't need to provide police certificates if you have provided them to us with an earlier visa application, and they were issued in the previous 24 months.

Good character
Police certificates

If you provide a police certificate that is not in English, you must provide an English translation.

This includes police certificates that record no convictions.

Your partner’s immigration status

Your partner must be a New Zealand citizen or resident

Your partner must provide one of the following:

  • a New Zealand passport
  • a New Zealand birth certificate
  • a certificate of New Zealand citizenship
  • a New Zealand residence class visa.

If your partner is a New Zealand resident because of their citizenship or residence status in Australia, they may provide their Australian passport, permanent residence or resident return visa.

If you apply online, you must upload a copy of this evidence with your application.

If you use a paper application form, you must send us either the original document, or a certified copy.

Your partner’s place of residence

Partners who have New Zealand residence because they have an Australian passport, permanent residence or resident return visa, must live in New Zealand

If this applies, your partner must provide evidence that they live in New Zealand, this could include:

  • letters or bills addressed to them
  • employment records
  • records of benefit payments from Work and Income, or tax records from Inland Revenue
  • mortgage, tenancy or utility supply agreements
  • documents showing their household effects have been moved to New Zealand
  • any other documents you think prove they live in New Zealand.

Your partner’s character

Your partner must be of good character

Your partner must provide a police certificate from any country they have spent 12 months or more in over the last 10 years. This applies whether the time was spent in one or more visits.

Your partner will not meet our character requirements if they have any convictions for domestic violence or sexual offences. If your partner does not meet our character requirements, we will consider whether they are eligible for a character waiver.

How to get a police certificate

Your partner's character

Your partner doesn’t need to provide a New Zealand police certificate – we can arrange this on their behalf.

Eligible NZ supporting partner

Your partner must be eligible to support your application

To be eligible to support your resident visa application your partner must not:

  • have supported a successful residence application for more than one previous partner
  • have supported a successful residence application for a previous partner in the last 5 years
  • have included a previous partner in a successful residence application in the last 5 years
  • have been included as a partner in a successful residence application in the last 5 years
  • be liable for deportation, or have their deportation liability suspended.

Your partner must complete a ‘Partnership support form for Residence/temporary entry’ as evidence of their support’.

Partnership Support Form for Residence (INZ 1178) PDF 273KB

You can read more about residence in the 'Self-Assessment Guide for Residence in New Zealand'.

Self-Assessment Guide for Residence in New Zealand (INZ 1003) PDF 299KB

Your relationship with your partner

You and your partner must have been living together in a genuine and stable relationship for 12 months or more

You must provide evidence that you and your partner are living together in a genuine and stable relationship.

Your evidence should show:

  • how long you’ve been together
  • how long you’ve been living together
  • that you share finances and other responsibilities
  • that you spend time together, eg photos together, emails and social media conversations between you
  • that other people recognise your relationship
  • anything else you think shows you and your partner are living together in a genuine and stable relationship.

Partnership

Bring family

Your dependent children must meet the requirements for a resident visa

To include dependent children in your residence application:

  • they must meet the identity, health and character requirements for this visa
  • they must be single and 24 or under
  • they must rely on an adult for financial support
  • you must be their parent or legal guardian
  • you must have the legal right to remove them from their home country (if aged 15 or under).

Dependent children

Dependent children

Your children must be single and 24 or under

For us to consider your children dependent, they must be single and either:

  • 17 or under
  • 18-24 with no children of their own.

We’ll ask you to sign a declaration that your children are single when you complete your residence application.

We’ll use the documents you provide as proof of your children’s identity to confirm their age.

Dependent children

Children living with a partner are not considered to be single, even if they’ve been living with their partner for less than a year.

Partnership

Children aged 21-24 are only considered dependent if they rely on an adult for financial support.

Dependent children aged 21 - 24

Children aged 21-24 must rely on an adult for financial support

When we assess if your children need financial support, we’ll look at whether they:

  • are working, if the work full-time or part-time, and how long they’ve been working
  • are able to support themselves
  • live with a family member and how much support is provided 
  • are studying and if they study full-time or part-time.

We may ask for evidence that your children are financially dependent.

Children aged 21-24 are only considered dependent if they rely on an adult for financial support.

Your relationship with your children

You must be the parent or legal guardian of your dependent children

You must provide evidence that confirms your relationship to your children, which  may include:

  • full birth certificates 
  • adoption papers, or if the adoption was customary, a written declaration stating you’ve adopted the children and the date and country the adoption took place
  • any other documents that confirm your relationship to each other.

If you’re a New Zealand resident and your dependent children were eligible to be included in your residence application, but weren’t included, we may ask you to explain the reason for this.

If your children joined your family through customary adoption, we may seek confirmation of the adoption from the children’s biological parents.

Custody of children 15 and under

You must have the legal right to remove dependent children from their home country

If you’re separated or divorced, you must provide legal documents that show that one of the following applies:

  • you have the sole right to decide where your children live
  • you have the right to remove your children from their home country
  • you have custody of the children and your children’s other parent agrees they can move to New Zealand if their application is approved.

If your children’s other parent has died, you must provide their death certificate.

If you apply online, you must upload a copy of this evidence with your application.

If you use a paper application form, you must send us either the original document, or a certified copy.

If you have a statutory right to the custody of your children and it’s not possible to get legal documents to confirm this right, we will assess your right to remove the children on a case-by-case basis.

 

Partner visa

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