Visa applications can now be made online


On 14 June 2015 the "Immigration ONLINE" service went live to employers or advisers submitting applications on behalf of their employees or clients respectively.

Also, some applicants will now be issued e-visas instead of a stamp or endorsement in their passport.

What is Immigration ONLINE?

Immigration ONLINE is the new service first launched in August 2014, to allow visa applicants to apply online.

What type of visas can be applied for online?

Only student visa, visitor visa and work visa applications can be made online. All other visa types, as well as any application where a family member is included, must still be submitted physically.

Immigration New Zealand (INZ) will allow additional types of online applications later this year.

Is there any advantage to using Immigration ONLINE?

Yes. Applications are being assessed in less than half the time of standard paper applications.

Can I or my employee still submit a paper application?

Yes. This is completely up to you and/or your employee.

How do I or my employee submit an application via Immigration ONLINE?

First, you need to go to the immigration website ( and create a RealMe account.

After you have a RealMe account you can complete an online form, upload the required documents, pay the application fee and submit. The application fee must be paid by credit card.

Can Cavell Leitch use Immigration ONLINE to submit my or my employee’s application for me?

Yes, we can. We can also make the entire process much more user-friendly and easy to follow.

Do the requirements for the visa change if the application is submitted using Immigration ONLINE?

No. All requirements remain the same.

Do I or my employee still need to include evidence of my employment and qualifications?

Yes. Any evidence that is normally required will need to be scanned, in colour, and uploaded to Immigration ONLINE.

How will my or my employee’s passport be endorsed if the application is online?

If you are in New Zealand and use Immigration ONLINE to apply for either a work visa (if you are from a visa-waiver country) or visitor visa (excluding Chinese nationals) then you will be issued an e-visa.

If you are not in either of those categories, you must send your passport to INZ, after you have submitted the application. Immigration ONLINE will tell you the address.

What is an e-visa?

An e-visa is an electronic visa. The visa details are on a PDF document that INZ sends by email. You/your employee must keep a copy to show when departing and re-entering New Zealand.

Is the e-visa any different to a normal visa?

No. An e-visa has the same validity and conditions as a visa that has been endorsed in your passport.

Can I get some help or advice in using the new Immigration ONLINE system and to understand e-visas?

Yes. Please feel free to telephone us or to come to one of our regular seminars. Our next seminar will discuss the online visa application process, which is on 11 August 2015. Please do not hesitate to contact Emma Morgan -, or the head of the Immigration Team, Nicola Appleton -, if we can help in any way.

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Copyright © Cavell Leitch. All rights reserved. Redistribution is only permitted with express written permission. For enquiries please contact us. This article by its nature cannot be comprehensive and cannot be relied on by clients as advice. It is provided to assist clients to identify legal issues on which they should seek legal advice. Please consult the professional staff of Cavell Leitch for advice specific to your situation.