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Applying for an initial licence

This policy sets out the requirements to apply for a New Zealand immigration adviser licence for the first time.

To become a licensed immigration adviser you must meet the requirements set out in the Immigration Adviser Competency Standards 2015 or the Trans-Tasman Mutual Recognition Act 1997.

The competency standards require initial licence applicants to hold an approved qualification or entry course, to have knowledge of New Zealand’s immigration advisers licensing scheme, to have knowledge of New Zealand immigration law and immigration instructions, to be able to prepare, lodge and administer immigration applications, to be able to communicate professionally in English, and to be able to conduct business professionally, ethically and responsibly.

Australian registered migration agents who wish to apply for an immigration adviser licence for the first time go to Licensing Toolkit - Trans-Tasman Mutual Recognition for more information.

Licence Type

Anyone who began their study towards an approved qualification from July 2015 is required to hold a provisional licence and enter into a supervision arrangement with a fully licensed immigration adviser for two years before they may upgrade to a full licence.

Initial Provisional Licence

From 26 November 2015, an initial applicant for a provisional licence must:

OR

The applicant must also have entered into a supervision arrangement with a supervisor who holds a full licence.

Everything you need to know about supervision arrangements is available in the Immigration Advisers Authority’s Supervision Toolkit

Initial Full or Limited licence

From 26 November 2015, an initial applicant for a full or limited licence must:

Approved qualifications and entry courses

The approved qualifications for a New Zealand immigration adviser licence are:

The approved entry courses for a New Zealand immigration adviser licence are:

The approved refresher courses are:

Initial licence application process

To obtain a licence, you need to lodge an online application at www.iaa.govt.nz. If you are not able to lodge an online application form, please contact the Authority to assist you.

Initial Licence Application

To complete the online application form you will need to provide:

Qualification details

The qualification section requires applicants to indicate which of the approved qualifications or entry courses they have completed, when they started studying and when the qualification was awarded.

Applicants will not be asked to upload a copy of their academic record as this will be verified with the Toi Ohomai Institute of Technology directly.

Applicants who have a choice will be asked to indicate licence type they wish to apply for.

Personal details

The personal details section requires the applicant to provide:

Contact details and addresses

The contact details section requires the applicant to provide:

Under section 77(2)(a) of the Act, the purpose of the register is to enable members of the public to know how to contact a licensed immigration adviser and to facilitate the compliance, audit and other supporting and administrative functions of the Registrar. The register must show a business and service address for the applicant.

The applicant may choose to have their postal address, business phone number, direct dial phone number, mobile number, fax number, business email address or business website shown on the public register of immigration advisers.

Under section 26 of the Immigration Advisers Licensing Act 2007, the applicant must inform the Authority if they work for any other businesses. If the applicant is working for any other businesses at the time of applying for a licence, they must provide the contact details and addresses for the other business(es).

Supervisor details

A provisional licence applicant must provide details about their proposed supervisor. Applicants can search the public register if they do not know the details of their proposed supervisor.

Applicants are required to provide the:

Further information about developing a supervision agreement and what is an acceptable supervision arrangement is available in the Immigration Advisers Authority’s Supervision Toolkit

Supervision agreement

The applicant and their proposed supervisor are required to have in place a supervision agreement for the approval of the Registrar. A copy of the signed supervision agreement must be uploaded to the application.

The Registrar has developed a model supervision agreement available on the Authority’s website www.iaa.govt.nz to help you.

Form 101A: Supervision Arrangement Application

The applicant must complete a Supervision Arrangement Application form to have their proposed supervisor and supervision arrangements approved by the Registrar.

Fitness for licensing

An applicant completing an initial application must complete a fitness for licensing questionnaire and provide any documentation required.

See Licensing Toolkit – Fitness for licensing for more information.

Identification

The applicant is required to attach one certified copy of their:

A person who is authorised to witness a statutory declaration must certify this document.

An applicant must provide one passport-sized and passport quality photograph, taken within the last six months.

This photograph will be used on the adviser’s wallet card and licence certificate. It will also be shown on the register.

Criminal record history/police certificates

Applicants are required to provide criminal record histories or police certificates, obtained within the last six months, from each country that they have lived in for a total of 12 months or more in the last 10 years. These countries must be listed in the application form.

New Zealand Criminal Record History

Overseas Criminal Record History or Police Certificates

When requesting your criminal record history or police certificate you must supply all of the names you have listed in the Personal Details section of this application form.

If the applicant cannot get a police certificate because they are not available or are difficult to obtain, they will need to provide a statutory declaration in English or in their own language and English.

This statutory declaration needs to detail the applicant’s attempts to obtain a criminal record history or police certificate and whether they have been convicted or charged with any offences in each country that they have lived in for 12 months or more over the last 10 years. The applicant needs to include information confirming their good character. This statutory declaration will need to be uploaded to the application.

Declaration

By ticking the declaration checkboxes in the online form, the applicant is declaring that:

WARNING: The giving of false information in the application form is an offence under section 66 of the Immigration Advisers Licensing Act 2007 with penalties of imprisonment of up to two years and/or a fine of up to $10,000 and will result in the application for a licence being refused.

Place of residence

Applicants are required to indicate if they have been lawfully present in New Zealand for more than 183 days in the past 12 months. A person is ordinarily resident in New Zealand if they have spent more than 183 days in New Zealand in the immediately preceding 12 months and is not unlawfully in New Zealand.

Fee and levy

The applicant must pay the licence application fee when applying for the licence. The immigration adviser’s levy is payable only if the Registrar approves the application.

The Authority only accepts payments in New Zealand dollars. Payments can be made online using Visa or Mastercard.

For applicants who are ordinarily resident in New Zealand the initial application fee is NZ$909.78 and the immigration adviser’s levy is NZ$1129.55.

A person is ordinarily resident in New Zealand if they have spent more than 183 days in New Zealand in the immediately preceding 12-month period and is not unlawfully in New Zealand.

For applicants who are not ordinarily resident in New Zealand the initial application fee is NZ$791.11 and the immigration adviser’s levy is NZ$982.22.

Applicants completing an online application will immediately be able to download an invoice and receipt.

Certifying supporting documentation

Where required to make a statutory declaration, it must be made in front of a person authorised to witness a statutory declaration. A person who is authorised to witness a statutory declaration must also certify documents that are required to be certified.

The following persons may witness a statutory declaration made in New Zealand:

The following persons are authorised to witness a statutory declaration made outside of New Zealand:

Assessment of licence applications

Applications submitted online are then allocated to a Technical Advisor.
If required the Technical Advisor undertakes a fitness assessment (see Licensing Toolkit – Fitness for licensing for more information). The Technical Advisor makes a recommendation to the Registrar who will decide if an applicant is fit to hold a licence.

Once an applicant has been declared fit to hold a licence, the Technical Advisor will assess each application against the Immigration Advisers Competency Standards. You can read the competency standards in full on the Authority’s website www.iaa.govt.nz.

The Technical Advisor will contact the applicant if they require further information. They may also interview an applicant to obtain further information or clarification during the assessment process.

Once the Technical Advisor has finished assessing the application, they will make a recommendation to the Registrar. The Registrar will decide whether the application meets licensing requirements and if the applicant should be granted or refused a licence.

Grant of licence

The Registrar will approve an application if they are satisfied that the applicant:

If the application is approved, the Authority will inform the applicant and will request the immigration adviser’s levy from the applicant.

The levy may be paid online at www.iaa.govt.nz by logging in, and must be paid within 20 working days. Applicants will immediately be able to download an invoice and receipt.

Once the levy has been paid a licence will be granted. A licence pack containing a wallet card and licence certificate will be sent to the applicant once a licence is granted. The register will be updated with the applicant’s details.

All licences are valid for 12 months from the date the Registrar grants it.

If a licence application is refused, the applicant will be informed by letter. The applicant has a right to appeal the refusal of a licence to the New Zealand District Court.


Footnote

[1] Toi Ohomai Institute of Technology was formerly the Bay of Plenty Polytechnic and Waiariki Bay of Plenty Polytechnic. Approved qualifications and courses issued by these organisations are also recognised.