As of April 2023, the New Zealand government has introduced new rules and regulations for those applying for a marriage visa. A marriage visa, also known as a partner visa, allows a non-New Zealand citizen to enter and live in the country with their New Zealand partner.
The main changes to the marriage visa application process include the following:
- Financial requirements: The sponsor, or New Zealand partner, must show that they can provide financial support to their non-New Zealand partner. This can be in the form of employment income or self-employment income, and the minimum income threshold is NZD $43,322 per year.
- English language requirements: Non-English speaking partners must provide evidence of their English language proficiency by taking a recognized English language test.
- Health requirements: Non-New Zealand partners must undergo a medical examination and provide a certificate to prove that they are of good health and have no infectious diseases.
- Length of visa: The initial visa granted will be for 12 months, with the option to apply for an extension for a further two years. After three years on a partner visa, non-New Zealand partners may be eligible to apply for residence.
- Application process: The application process has been made more streamlined, with the introduction of an online application system. Applicants can now upload documents and track the progress of their application online.
It is important to note that the process for applying for a marriage visa can be complex and time-consuming. It is highly recommended to seek the advice of an immigration lawyer or specialist to ensure that you meet all the requirements and submit a strong application.
These new changes to the marriage visa application process aim to ensure that non-New Zealand partners entering the country are able to integrate successfully and contribute positively to society. By meeting the financial and language requirements, non-New Zealand partners can improve their chances of successfully obtaining a marriage visa and starting their new life in New Zealand with their partner.