Post Study Work Permit in New Zealand: Visa Rules, Qualifications, Eligibility

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Aishwarya
Aishwarya Bhatnagar
Study Abroad Expert
Updated on Feb 1, 2023 19:02 IST
visanewzealand

All international students who have graduated from New Zealand with a valid qualification can apply for a post-study work visa (PSW). It is a visa of varying lengths that lets international students work for any employer in New Zealand. If you manage to find a job that is relevant to your stream of course then you can have your work visa extended for two years. Read on to know more about the number of years you qualify for. Check: How to get PR in New Zealand after studying?

New Zealand has over the years become one of the preferred study-abroad destinations for Indians and International students alike. The country has registered positive student footfall into the country, especially for top-ranking universities in New Zealand. Today student-friendly policies such as post-study work permits, part-time work options, easy admissions, and a friendly environment have made students seriously consider New Zealand as their study abroad destination. 

Latest Updates:

Nov 7, 2022: As per the recent changes in policy for obtaining a post-study work permit in New Zealand states that the applicants must:

  • Have studied a Level 7 degree qualification or,
  • Should have studied non-degree qualification below Level 7, but the qualification must be listed on the Qualifications Eligible for a Post Study Work Visa list. 
  • Having a job related to study subjects would be mandatory to prove if applying through the non-degree Level 7 option.

Those applicants who applied for their student visa on or before May 11, 2022, would be eligible for a post-study work permit in New Zealand, even if their qualifications are not enlisted on the Qualifications Eligible for a Post-Study Work Visa list. But, it is mandatory to have an acceptable qualification while applying for the PSW in New Zealand.

May 17, 2022: New Zealand announces extending the visas for those whose work or work residence visas expire between May 9 - December 31, 2022.

  • Those who were granted an open work visa like - Essential Skills Work Visa, Post Study Work Visa or Partner of a New Zealander Work Visa will be automatically given an extension. New dates of visas expiring would be available from May 25 onwards. This visa will be functional for up to 2 years even after an extension.
  • For work residence visas, the extension limit is only for 06 months. These visas include - Talent (Accredited Employers), Talent (Arts, Culture and Sports), Long Term Skill Shortage List, Skilled Migrant Job Search or South Island Contribution.

May 17, 2022: New Zealand is set to open its borders for 5,000 students under certain border exceptions and will fully open up by July 31, 2022. Read the article for more details.

April 12, 2022: New Zealand is set to open its borders for temporary work and student visa holders. In this third phase of border opening, New Zealand is set to welcome its international students studying in semester 2, which are over 5000. Australian citizens and permanent citizens can also return back in this phase. Those who are travelling to New Zealand in this phase must ensure the following:

  1. Evidence of a valid job offer if traveling on a work visa.
  2. Evidence of student visa which was initially granted for the same level of study, course and institution.
  3. Evidence of relevant funds required for staying or studying in New Zealand.

In case of any changes in the circumstances of granted visa conditions, visa holders may not be allowed entry into New Zealand. For travelling back to New Zealand they must apply for a fresh visa or renew their visas.

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Who can apply for a visa in New Zealand?

You must apply for the PSW visa within three months of the end date of the student visa. Ph.D. students are allowed to apply up to six months after the end date of the student visa. To apply for the PSW visa, you must have successfully completed a degree qualification that would gain points under the ‘New Zealand Immigration Skilled Migrant Category. Also, your qualifications must be either Level 4 or higher than that based on New Zealand Qualifications Framework (NZQF).

Post-Study Work Visa Rules for New Zealand

With effect from 2018, the Government of New Zealand following a public consultation has ushered in changes to immigration policies that impact post-study work rights for international students. Read on to understand what they are and how they are going to affect you. Here for the benefit of our readers, we have provided the earlier version of the rule and how it has been changed for the students currently pursuing their course. 

Level 4 to 6 and non-degree Level 7 qualifications:

  • Earlier: Prior to the changes, students who studied for 24 months were entitled to a one-year open work visa and then a two-year employer-assisted work visa.
  • After Change: Now, a two-year employer-assisted work visa has been removed and a one-year open work visa is retained. However, those who pursue their education outside Auckland can get a two-year open work visa.

Bachelor-level qualifications:

  • Earlier:  After 12 months of study students were entitled to a one-year open work visa and a two-year employer-assisted work visa.
  • After Change: One-year open and two-year employer-assisted visa is replaced with a three-year open work visa.

Post-graduate level qualifications:

  • Earlier: After pursuing 12 months of study, students were entitled to a one-year open work visa and after that, a two-year employer-assisted work visa.
  • After Change: One-year open and two-year employer-assisted visa is replaced with a three-year open work visa.

These visa rules are applicable to those who hold a student visa or whose student visa application has been accepted by Immigration New Zealand:

Level of study

Duration of course

Eligibility of visa

Level 7 Bachelor’s degree or

above

At least 30 weeks in New Zealand

Three-year open work visa

Non-degree Level 7

qualification

At least 30 weeks in New Zealand

Three-year open work visa

One qualification at Level 4-6

At least 60 weeks in New Zealand

Three-year open work visa

Two qualifications at Levels 4-6

Study 60 weeks in total, 30 weeks for each qualification.

The second qualification is higher than the first level.

Three-year open work visa

Temporary work visa in New Zealand stands suspended since 2020 when COVID-19 hit the globe. New Zealand is only allowing those people to come and work who come from a quarantine-free zone and also from a safe zone but a mandatory negative report before departure to New Zealand is required upon arrival.

To know more go to, Changes in Post-Study Work Rights for International Students in New Zealand

How to apply for a post-study work visa in New Zealand?

You can choose to apply through the INZ online application portal, Immigration Online, or through the print form INZ1015. You will need the following documents and bank balance before applying:

  • Work Visa application form INZ1015
  • Evidence that you have completed your qualification
  • Bank statement showing a balance of a minimum NZD 5,000
  • Three months' bank statement
  • Passport
  • Two recent passport-size photographs

Read: New Zealand Student Visa Processing Time

Post-study Work Visa Duration in New Zealand

The duration of a post-study work visa in New Zealand depends upon the applicant's area and level of study. Area wise there are three major distinctions which are beneficial factors in deciding the post-study work visa duration in New Zealand:

Applicants who Studied in Auckland

Students who have completed their higher studies in Auckland can work for the following years:

  • Applicants with a 3 years bachelor's degree and those who have achieved Level of 7, then he/she is eligible to apply for a post-study work visa for 3 years.
  • The Level 7 Graduate Diploma holders can apply for a 1-year post-study work visa.
  • Levels 4-6 qualified applicants can also apply for a 1-year post-study work visa.
  • Applicants are eligible to apply for 1 year extra for a post-study work visa only if they are into occupational registration and are authorised.

Applicants Studied Outside of Auckland

Those applicants who have completed their studies before December 31, 2021, are eligible for a 2-3 year duration post-study work visa in New Zealand. While those who complete their qualifications after December 31, 2021, may be eligible for a 1-year post-study work visa. The following conditions are proposed by New Zealand Immigration Department:

Level 7 Qualification or Higher

Level 7 bachelor's degree holders can apply for a post-study work visa for 3 years duration. While graduate diploma holders who fulfil either of the following conditions are eligible for getting a post-study work visa:

  • A 2-year work visa can be availed by those who complete their degree on or before December 31, 2021. Or
  • Those completing their degrees after December 31, 2021, can apply for a 1-year work visa only.

Level 4-6 Qualification Holders

Applicants who hold either of the Level 4 or 5 or 6 qualifications can apply if:

  • A 2-year work visa if the degree completes on or before December 31, 2021. Or
  • The applicant will be eligible for a 1-year work visa if they complete their degree after December 31, 2021.

Applicants Studied Off-Campus

Students who complete their degree in the distance mode or off-campus are eligible for a work visa in New Zealand which is the same as for those who studied in Auckland. The duration of the visa would also be the same depending upon the applicant's qualification level.

Related Articles:

Part-time work options in New Zealand for international students

New Zealand Student Visa Guide

Scholarships to Study in New Zealand

Job prospects for Indians who have studied in New Zealand

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Post Study Work Permit in New Zealand FAQs

Q. What is the minimum duration of any post-study work visa in New Zealand?

A. Full-time international students who are above 18 years can apply for a student visa which can be useful for working for a minimum of 4 years. The minimum duration varies between 6 months to 4 years.

Q. What is the variation of conditions in New Zealand?

A. Variation of conditions in New Zealand if a person wishes to study for 3 years or more in part-time.

Q. How are visa applications for employer-assisted accepted in New Zealand?

A. An employer-assisted post-study work visa is accepted before 26 November and the concerned applicant can only then choose to either take the job or leave it.

Q. How is the employer changed on a post-study work visa in New Zealand?

A. Any applicant who wishes to change his/her employer can only do so if he/she holds an Essentials Work Visa in New Zealand. Holding this visa can help the applicant in changing his/her employer or job only if they don't fall in the list of skill shortages.

Q. What all documents are required in the application to modify a job or employer in New Zealand?

A. In New Zealand, work visa holders can modify their job or employer by submitting an application with documents like - an employment offer, employer agreement, INZ 1113 completed by the new employer and a cover letter if a notice period needs to be served.

Q. Why are visa conditions followed strictly in New Zealand?

A. Visa conditions in New Zealand for post-study work visa holders is nothing but a legal document which states the details of the work visa the applicant holds like date of entry and exit in New Zealand, type of work visa held, etc.

Q. Is it mandatory to be fully vaccinated before travelling to NZ for work?

A. Yes, international students who come to New Zealand for post-study work have to be fully vaccinated only then can their visa be approved.

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About the Author
Aishwarya Bhatnagar
Study Abroad Expert

A passionate writer and a literature fanatic, Aishwarya Bhatnagar has 4+ years of experience - working in EdTech with a strong focus on studying abroad. She holds a postgraduate degree in Linguistics from Delhi Univ... Read Full Bio

Comments

(3)

a

ajith t s

3 months ago

Hi, I am planning to apply for masters in NZ. I wish to take my wife with me after completing course. I wanted to confirm if that is possible and if yes what are the requirements!

Reply to ajith t s

A

Aishwarya BhatnagarStudy Abroad Expert

3 months ago

Hello Ajith! Yes, your wife can travel with you on a dependent visa. You can find more details about Student's Spouse Visa in New Zealand at https://studyabroad.shiksha.com/student-spouse-visa-for-new-zealand-applycontent5767 for requirements and application process.
All the best!

P

Poonam Singh

4 months ago

Hi, I am applying for Masters in NZ (Level 9) and my spouse will accompany me. my spouse will be applying for partnership visa on my student visa basis.
I just wanted to confirm that will he be able to work in NZ while I am studying and will it be a full time work permit?

Reply to Poonam Singh

A

Aishwarya BhatnagarStudy Abroad Expert

4 months ago

Hello Poonam, yes your husband would be able to work in New Zealand if he accompanies you, while you are on your student visa. He will also be allowed to work in New Zealand on a full-time basis. You can also check our dedicated page for more details - https://studyabroad.shiksha.com/student-spou...Hello Poonam, yes your husband would be able to work in New Zealand if he accompanies you, while you are on your student visa. He will also be allowed to work in New Zealand on a full-time basis. You can also check our dedicated page for more details - https://studyabroad.shiksha.com/student-spouse-visa-for-new-zealand-applycontent5767
All the best!

U

Umang Dave

7 months ago

Hi, I had received student visa in March 2020 (Had paid full fees and received e-visa) to study Graduate Diploma Level 7 (*Outside Auckland) but I could not enter NZ at that time because the border got shut due to the pandemic. Now, I have again applied for the student visa as I have got a place ...Hi, I had received student visa in March 2020 (Had paid full fees and received e-visa) to study Graduate Diploma Level 7 (*Outside Auckland) but I could not enter NZ at that time because the border got shut due to the pandemic. Now, I have again applied for the student visa as I have got a place in the Cohort 4 (border exception for 5000 students) and will be starting the same course (Graduate Diploma Level 7) from July intake. I wanted to understand, what will be the duration for the post study work visa in my case? Due to the pandemic I could not travel to NZ despite having the visa issued and hence, could not complete the course before 31st Dec 2021. Will I still get 2 year post study work visa or only 1 year as I could not complete the course before 31st Dec 2021? Please help me.

Reply to Umang Dave

A

Aishwarya BhatnagarStudy Abroad Expert

7 months ago

Hello Umang! You will have to get in touch with your provider for more details in order to to see how much your course was completed and how many weeks are still left to be completed to be eligible for a PSW in NZ. Good luck!

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