S4.20 Refugee Quota Family Reunification Category
The objective of the Refugee Quota Family Reunification Category, which is part of the Refugee Quota residence programme, is to:
- enable New Zealand to meet its international and humanitarian obligations;
- maintain the principle of family unity; and
- facilitate the successful resettlement of mandated refugees resident in New Zealand by providing them with an opportunity to sponsor immediate family members.
Note: The places available under this category are incorporated into the quota places available for the family reunification subcategory of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) mandated refugee residence category; however applicants do not themselves have to be mandated refugees.
S4.20.5 Who is eligible for residence under the Refugee Quota Family Reunification Category?
- An applicant may qualify for residence under the Refugee Quota Family Reunification Category if:
- they have an acceptable sponsor (see S4.20.10);
- they were declared as an immediate family member (see S4.20.15) in the sponsor’s original Residence Application for Mandated Refugees form, and they can provide satisfactory evidence of the relationship;
- they meet the character requirements at A5;
- they meet the health requirements specified at A4.74; and
- they have satisfied an immigration officer that:
- the circumstances and reasons for the separation from, and re-establishment of contact with, their sponsor are plausible and credible; and
- reunification will have a positive settlement effect on the sponsor; and
- they have the potential for successful settlement.
- Applicants are exempt from the requirement to have an acceptable standard of health (see A4.10), except for the health requirements specified at A4.74.
- If the applicant is a dependent child aged 21-24, evidence must be submitted to show dependence on the sponsor (see R2.1.30).
S4.20.10 Who is an acceptable sponsor under the Refugee Quota Family Reunification Category?
- An acceptable sponsor is a New Zealand citizen or resident who:
- was granted a residence class visa as a mandated refugee (see S3.22), excluding people granted permanent residence under the Community Organisation Refugee Sponsorship category (see S4.25); and
- is living in New Zealand; and
- is an immediate family member of the applicant (see S4.20.15); and
- has attended an interview with a Refugee Quota Branch immigration officer and been deemed to be an acceptable sponsor.
Note: A person granted permanent resident visa under this category is not able to be a sponsor under this category as they are not a mandated refugee.
- If the sponsor is a child aged 18 and under sponsoring a parent, the immigration officer must be satisfied that it is in the best interests of the child to grant a permanent residence visa to the parent(s).
- The immigration officer must be satisfied that the relationship between the sponsor and the applicant is credible and genuine. If the sponsor did not declare the applicant in their own residence application then R5.15 must be followed.
S184.108.40.206 Undertakings and responsibilities of sponsors
A sponsor under this category is exempt from meeting the sponsorship undertakings requirement at R4.10.
S4.20.15 Who is an immediate family member under the Refugee Quota Family Reunification Category?
For the purposes of the Refugee Quota Family Reunification Category, an immediate family member is defined as a partner, dependent child, or parent where the applicant is a dependent child.
S4.20.20 Requirements for making an application for the grant of a permanent resident visa
- Applications for a permanent resident visa under the Refugee Quota Family Reunification Category must be made in the prescribed manner (see R2.40).
- Applications can only be made to the Refugee Quota Branch, and only after the applicant’s sponsor has been deemed acceptable (see S4.20.10).
- Applicants are exempt from paying the application fee and immigration levy.
- Appropriately delegated immigration officers may waive by special direction:
- the requirement to submit an overseas police clearance certificate from any country where the sponsor has a well-founded fear of persecution; and
- any other mandatory requirement for lodgement except the requirement to complete and submit a residence application form together with two passport photographs of, and medical and X-ray certificates for, each person included in the application.
- If a birth certificate for any person included in the application is unavailable, a statutory declaration confirming the full name, date and place of birth and full names of both parents must be submitted.
- If documents relating to the custody of any child included in the application and aged under 16 are unavailable, a statutory declaration confirming the legal custody of the child must be submitted.
- The principal applicant and partner included in the application must supply evidence to show the nature and duration of their partnership, and that it is a genuine and stable partnership (see F2.20). A statutory declaration confirming the duration and nature of the partnership must be submitted if such evidence would be unduly difficult to obtain because:
- conditions in the relevant country are such that the country's governmental infrastructure is no longer functioning; and/or
- there are circumstances beyond the control of the applicants which prevent them obtaining the required evidence.
- If overseas police clearances are unavailable for any person aged 17 and older included in the application, a statutory declaration must be provided stating whether the applicant has been convicted, or found guilty of, or charged with, any offences against the law in the country or countries for which police clearance certificates are unavailable.