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Immigration & Visas

The University may offer you a job if you do not have a Work or Residency Visa and Permit but it will be conditional on you obtaining a Work or Residency Visa and Permit. You cannot start working for us until you have obtained the relevant permit. It will be your responsibility to obtain the necessary permit. The University of Otago is NOT involved in the visa process.

The University will do what it can to support you with your visa application but cannot provide any Immigration advice.  A NZ Immigration advisor Act came into effect on 4th May 2009 and it requires anyone providing immigration advice about New Zealand to be licensed. Anyone that provides immigration advice, who is not licensed, can face penalties (prison and/or fines). The University of Otago is not licensed to provide advice. 

Meeting the Immigration requirements takes time so we suggest that you initiate contact with a NZ Embassy or Consulate as soon as possible.

To access the forms and information you require please contact your nearest New Zealand Embassy or access the New Zealand Immigration website at http://www.immigration.govt.nz/  or you can phone free 0508 55 88 55 (+64 9 914 4100 from outside NZ)

To access information regarding current skill shortages in New Zealand, this link will be useful http://www.newzealandnow.govt.nz/skills-needed-in-new-zealand~18.html.

Permanent/Confirmation Path appointment

Any person intending to settle in New Zealand (other than Australian citizens or the holder of a current Australian permanent residence visa including a current Australian resident return visa) must have an appropriate residence visa. This should be obtained from the nearest New Zealand embassy or consulate or from New Zealand Immigration Services in New Zealand.

There are two options for skilled workers to apply for New Zealand residence: the Skilled Migrant category and the Work to Residency policy.

As an Accredited Employer under the Work to Residence - Talent Policy, the University of Otago is part of a small group of New Zealand organisations who are able to recruit highly talented and skilled individuals through the fast tracked "Talent Visa" scheme.

Provided all the necessary documentation is submitted with the initial application, and there being nothing of note on the medical certificate and the police clearance, a Talent Visa will take approximately 5 days to process. This is substantially faster than the process for obtaining a standard work visa and work permit and much faster than the process of applying for Permanent Residency – Skilled Migrant Category (which can take from 6-8 months to complete).

Who does the Talent Work Policy apply to?
You may be eligible for a Work Visa or Permit under the Talent Work Policy if you:

  • Are aged 55 years or younger, and;
  • Have an offer of full-time employment (of at least 30 hours per week) for a minimum of 24 months, and;
  • Will be paid a minimum base salary of NZ$55,000, and;
  • Have met immigration health and character requirements, and;
  • Have met, or are able to meet, any of the necessary New Zealand occupational registration requirements to take up the offer (if required).

Once issued with a Talent Visa and Permit, you will be granted multiple entry work visas and permits enabling a stay of 30 months in New Zealand. Your visa and permit are subject to the condition that you may work for an Accredited Employer only.

You will then be in a position to apply for permanent residency in New Zealand after 2 years and will qualify for residence.

Fixed-term appointments

If you are accepting a fixed-term appointment, you will be required to obtain the appropriate work visa and permit (or a Talent Visa may be appropriate – please see requirements above) for the length of your appointment. The University will support your application to a Work Visa and Permit under the Essential Skills Work Policy by providing a job offer and an Employer Supplementary form.

Frequently Asked Questions about Immigration


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