Are you thinking about hiring overseas people? Or do you currently hire immigrant workers? This information is relevant to you.

New Zealand's population is becoming more and more culturally diverse. Overseas residents come to New Zealand to look for work and set up a new life, and bring with them a range of unique skills and expertise. Skilled migrant workers can be invaluable to business- however some employers might be concerned of the legal implications involved.

An employer must check that the migrant is legally able to work in New Zealand before hiring them, or agreeing to hire them. Citizens and residents of New Zealand and Australia do not need a work visa to legally work in New Zealand. Citizens from other nations will normally have a work visa label or stamp in their passport, which verifies that they have correctly applied to work in New Zealand.

If the person you wish to employ does not have a valid visa for the work you wish them to perform, you can assist them in making an application for a visa or to alter their current visa.

It is an offence to employ a migrant who is not legally entitled to work in New Zealand.

What does this mean for HR Managers?

1. Check all entitlements to work in NZ of every staff member in your organisation.

2. Keep proof of this on file: e.g. a copy of the NZ passport, birth certificate or citizenship certificate with photo ID; residence class visa or endorsement in a foreign passport indicating NZ citizenship; Australian passport or Australian permanent residence visa.

4. Check people working in your organisation even if they have been referred by a third party such as a recruitment agency.

5. Do not offer an employment contract to anyone until you see proof that they can work in NZ.

Immigration New Zealand has released a helpful guide for employers who are currently or seeking to employ migrant workers. This booklet can be accessed via the link below:

Written by Michelle Carabine, Rebecca Catley at 09:00




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