Interim visa policy change

Interim visas are granted to visa applicants in New Zealand, in cases where their request for a further temporary visa has not been decided by Immigration New Zealand (INZ) by the time their underlying visa has expired.  They are issued for a period of 6 months and are valid until a decision is made on the new visa application.

INZ has announced that from Monday 27 August 2018, the currency of interim visas has been amended slightly.  In the event that a visa application is withdrawn or declined instead of the interim visa expiring the day of that decision (rendering the holder illegally present the day after), they will now only expire 21 days after the further temporary visa application is declined or withdrawn.

This amendment will be welcomed by visa applicants and employers alike as the current position effectively requires of interim visa holders, with valid work rights, to immediately cease work the day their application for a further visa is declined because they would effectively become unlawful in New Zealand the day thereafter.

Such interim visa holders will now be able to continue working for a period of up to 21 days to either allow a more orderly hand-over of workplace responsibilities and lawful departure, or temporary measures to be put in place to allow the applicant to challenge the underlying decision and potentially secure a new visa to recommence employment.

This is a positive change, and reflects fairness in situations where in many instances the applicant is able to ultimately secure a new visa due to some type of miscommunication or processing error in the prior visa application.

For further information or advice regarding immigration law contact the Workplace Law team at Lane Neave by calling 0800 802 800, or visit our dedicated immigration law website at

Workplace Law team

If you have any queries in respect of the above, or any other Workplace Law issues, please contact a member of Lane Neave’s Workplace Law team:

Employment: Andrew Shaw, Fiona McMillan, Gwen DrewittMaria Green,  Hannah Martin, Joseph HarropHolly StruckmanAlex Beal, Giuliana Petronelli, Abby Shieh
Immigration: Mark Williams, Rachael Mason, Daniel Kruger, Nicky Robertson, Julia StrickettKen Huang, Mary Zhou, Shi Sheng Cai (Shoosh)Sarah Kirkwood, Janeske SchutteLingbo Yu
ACC: Andrew Shaw
Health and Safety: Andrew ShawFiona McMillan

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