Visa News
April 7, 2024

Parents – what’s happening?

Many migrants are anxious to be reunited with parents. The parent residence category causes frustration and the new Parent Temporary visa is on the to do list.
Parents – what’s happening?

Many migrants are anxious to be reunited with parents. The parent residence category has long been a source of frustration to migrants while successive governments considered what to do with this category (including putting it on hold for 6 years). Here is a snapshot of what’s been happening since this category reopened in October 2022 up to 1 February 2024.

5,500 Expressions of Interest (EOI) have been selected out of the parent pool. 25% of these EOIs were either declined or withdrawn. A total of 3,520 Invitations to apply for residence (ITA) have been issued. A residence application must be lodged within 4 months of the date the ITA was issued.

3,062 residence applications have been received by Immigration NZ. 847 applications have been decided with 815 approved and 32 declined (96% approval rate). Only 28% of the residence applications lodged have been decided as at 1 February 2024.

The annual quota for parent residence visas is 2,500 people to be approved in the year ending 30 June. The ballot (lottery) for parents has 8,000 EOIs. Each EOI may have one or two parents included (so potentially anywhere between 8,000 and 16,000 people competing for 2,500 annual places).

The main reasons for parent EOIs or residence applications failing is the sponsoring child did not met residence (time living in NZ) or minimum income requirements. Health issues are another factor that create problems.

A quicker option for residence is the Parent retirement category, but it requires the parent(s) to have available $1 million to invest in New Zealand for 4 years, plus $500,000 in cash or assets and an annual income of $60,000.

The coalition agreement includes developing a new Parent Temporary visa (valid for 5 years plus extendable for another 5 years with suitable cover for any healthcare costs incurred in NZ). In a recent media interview the Minister of Immigration, Erica Stanford, confirmed the new parent visa will happen sometime in this parliamentary term (so before the end of 2026). Meantime parents can secure a multiple 3 year temporary visa allowing a total stay in NZ of 18 months. Malcolm Pacific Immigration will keep you posted on the development of the new parent visa as more news comes to hand.

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