Partnership Visa Information

Here we share some general information about Partnership Visa policy. This material is for information purposes only. Contact one of our Licensed Immigration Advisers for personal immigration advice.

Partnership Visa Information

Partnership Visa Policy

Non-New Zealanders can gain residence in New Zealand on the basis of their relationship with a partner who is a New Zealand Citizen or Resident.

But what seems like a simple and obvious policy is not always straightforward. The government expects a couple will be able to document a relationship to a high standard before residence is approved. Proving a genuine relationship to the satisfaction of an immigration officer is complex. Taking care to get-it-right will avoid disappointment. Read more about the partnership visa nz guide here.

How is Partnership Defined?

Partnerships can be defined as two people of the same or opposite sex who have lived together in a genuine and stable relationship for at least 12 months. The types of partnerships that are recognised include:

  • a legal marriage
  • a civil union
  • a de facto relationship

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The Malcolm Pacific Immigration advisers and experts take away the stress and worry of navigating the complex world of New Zealand Partnership policy, visas and immigration.

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Partnership Visa Approval

Approval is based on an assessment by Immigration New Zealand of whether the relationship is “genuine and stable” and whether the partners have been “living together” for 12 months or more at the time the nz residence application was lodged and then decided. The presence or otherwise of a legal marriage is not a deciding factor on its own. The rules apply to both straight and gay couples.

The biggest frustration for applicants is that they know their relationship is 'genuine and stable' but proving that with documentation can be difficult. Frequently couple's have been separated due to employment, family commitments, or visa barriers, which adds additional complication to documenting 12 months of living together.

The Complex Criteria

With such subjective criteria and a wide variety of customs in different cultures and religions, it is not surprising that this policy has been used in the past by some people - to gain an unfair advantage or that Immigration New Zealand has developed complex strategies to defeat such frauds!

Even the most genuine and straightforward partnerships can find themselves subject to a very intrusive set of requirements. While you may know that your relationship is “genuine” and “stable”, how do you “prove” that to a suspicious third party; how do you prove how long you have lived together; what if a couple has travelled or spent some time apart?

General Comments

Health and character requirements apply, and there is a limit on how many times a New Zealander can sponsor a partner.

Historical actions (or lack of action) by applicants that were innocent at the time can create serious problems in the context of an Immigration New Zealand assessment.

All this is complicated by the emotions involved when a relationship is placed under a microscope by a third party and when children are involved.

Even the most straightforward cases should talk to Malcolm Pacific Immigration from the very beginning.

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