Non-principal applicant eligibility for permanent residence

People who were included in someone else's residence application, such as their parent's or partner's, can sometimes be granted a permanent resident visa without that other person becoming a permanent resident first.

For non-principal applicants to be eligible for a permanent resident visa, the principal applicant must hold a permanent resident visa. In some circumstances a non-principal applicant can be granted permanent residence on their own.

Eligibility for partners of principal applicants

If you were the principal applicant’s partner when you were included in their residence application, you may be eligible for a variation of travel conditions or a new resident visa if one the following apply to you:

Evidence to support eligibility

You’ll need to provide evidence to support your eligibility, which may include:

Eligibility for dependent children

If you were included as a dependent child in a residence application, your eligibility for a permanent resident visa, variation of travel conditions or new resident visa is the same as if you were still a dependent child.

If you’re under 16 and parents are no longer together, we’ll assess your eligibility based on the parent who has custody of you.

If you’re 16 or over, we’ll assess your eligibility based on the parent you live with. If you don’t live with either of your parents, we’ll assess your eligibility based on the parent who was the principal applicant at the time your parents applied for residence.

If the parent who was the principal applicant dies or becomes a New Zealand citizen, we’ll assess your eligibility based on your other parent.

We can assess you in your own right if one of the following applies:

Evidence to support eligibility

If you want to have your application for a permanent resident visa, variation of travel conditions or new resident visa based on the eligibility of a non-principal applicant, you have to supply evidence that supports your eligibility, eg custody arrangements.

Additional exceptions for non-principal applicants

You can be granted a permanent resident visa, even if the principal applicant doesn’t have one if any of the following apply.