Immigration News

Partners now eligible for critical purpose entry

As of 5 October 2020, you may be able to travel to New Zealand while the border is closed if you’re the partner or family member of a New Zealand citizen or resident.

 Updates to list of critical purpose reasons to travel

The New Zealand government is now slowly reopening the border to more critical purpose categories. This time, it’s partners of New Zealand citizens or residents who are from Australia or a country on the visa-waiver list. Family members who don’t have a relationship-based visa but are travelling with a New Zealand citizen or resident or normally live in New Zealand may also apply for consideration.

You can only submit an expression of interest (EOI) to travel to New Zealand while the border is closed if one of these critical purpose reasons applies to you:

Partners of New Zealand citizens and resident Australian citizens or permanent residents who are based in New Zealand

From 5 October 2020, if you are an Australian citizen or permanent resident and in a genuine and stable relationship with a New Zealand citizen or resident, you can request to travel to New Zealand based on your relationship. You may include any dependent children. If your Request to Travel is successful, you will be granted a single-entry Resident Visa to travel to New Zealand.

In your Request to Travel, you will be asked to provide proof of your relationship your partner. This evidence can include, but is not limited to:

  • the description of your partnership, including details of any previous shared living arrangements
  • any supporting documentation that demonstrates your partnership (including marriage certificate, joint tenancy agreement or joint bank account)
  • confirmation of your identity, your partner’s identity, and any dependents included in your Request to Travel
  • recent travel movements of you and your partner

If you include dependent children, you need to supply evidence of the relationship, such as a birth certificate, adoption certificate, or evidence of legal guardianship.

Partners from visa-waiver countries

From 5 October 2020, if you hold a passport from a country on the visa-waiver countries list, and are in a genuine and stable relationship with a New Zealand citizen or resident, you can make a Request to Travel to New Zealand based on this relationship. You may include dependent children. If your request to travel is approved, you will be invited to apply for a visitor visa to travel to New Zealand.

You will need to meet all the requirements of this visa. If this visa is approved, you will be granted a visa up to 6 months and can travel to New Zealand.

In your visa application, you will be asked to upload evidence of your relationship to your partner. This evidence can include, but is not limited to:

  • a description of your partnership, including details of any previous shared living arrangements
  • any supporting documentation that demonstrates your partnership (including marriage certificate or joint bank account)
  • travel movements of you and your New Zealand partner
  • evidence that your New Zealand partner supports your travel to New Zealand
  • any other evidence showing a commitment to a shared life

Family members of NZ citizens or residents who do not hold relationship-based visas If you are a partner, dependent child, or legal guardian of a New Zealand citizen or resident and you do not have a visa based on this relationship — like a partner visa — you may be able to travel to New Zealand, but you must be travelling with your New Zealand citizen or resident family member or normally live in New Zealand.

Unsure if you meet these critical purpose criteria? New Zealand Immigration Law can help. Contact Aaron Martin for clear, expert advice.