Entrepreneur Resident Visa

The Entrepreneur Resident Visa is aimed at individuals who have already been living and working in New Zealand, either as self-employed or operating a self-employed business.

Applicants must have been living and working as self-employed in New Zealand for at least six months, and will have to meet additional eligibility requirements if they have been self-employed for less than two years.

Who can apply for an Entrepreneur Resident Visa?

In order to submit an application for an Entrepreneur Resident Visa, an individual should:

  • have started or purchased a minimum of 25% of a business in New Zealand, and have run that business for a minimum of six months
    • the business must be profitable
    • the business must be meeting or exceeding the goals in its business plan
    • the business must be demonstrably making a contribution to the economic growth of New Zealand
  • have invested in their business to at least the extent stated in their business plan, and to a value of at least NZD $500,000 if they have been running the business for less than two years
  • have been living and working in New Zealand on a valid visa, either:
    • an Entrepreneur Work Visa if self-employed for less than two years
    • another current work visa if that visa permits self-employment, and the individual has been working in their own business for a minimum of two years
  • have not drawn upon any welfare benefits or assistance since they were granted their initial work visa
  • be able to demonstrate they have sufficient ability to speak and understand English
  • meet the standard good health and character requirements for New Zealand visas

What does an Entrepreneur Resident Visa offer?

If granted, an Entrepreneur Resident Visa gives ths holder permission to remain in New Zealand in order to continue running their business, as well as the wider right to live, work and study in the country.

This visa also permits applicants to include their partner and any dependent children (24 or younger) in their application.

An Entrepreneur Resident Visa can be issued for an indefinite period of time, but will have conditions which will likely require action by the holder within or at the end of the first two years. For example:

  • This visa’s travel facility will expire after two years unless renewed or the holder applies for and receives a Permanent Resident Visa
  • If the holder has not run their business for at least two years, in order for their visa to remain valid they will be required to:
    • continue working in their business for a minimum of two years
    • continue investing in their business as planned for a minimum of two years
    • continue to employ people in any jobs that have been created by the business for a minimum of two years

Failure to meet any of these conditions may result in the holder and any dependants losing their right to live, work and study in New Zealand.

How do I apply for an Entrepreneur Resident Visa?

In order to apply for this visa, individuals should prepare sufficient supporting information about their business, including:

  • a business plan
  • accounts or profit/loss statements
  • information on how the company contributes to New Zealand’s national growth, such as:
    • details of how the company introduces or enhances new or existing technology
    • creates or expands export markets
    • creates full-time jobs

Applications are submitted online, and applicants may be asked to provide additional information about their business by New Zealand Immigration if there is not enough for them to make an informed decision.

Application fees for an Entrepreneur Resident Visa vary depending on the nationality of the applicant. For citizens of some countries, there is no application fee or immigration levy charged by New Zealand Immigration. Individuals who are not exempt from paying an application fee should expect to pay an application fee of around NZD $6,860.

Mohamed Anas Sirajur Raheem

BA (Political Studies), LLB (VUW)

Mohamed is an enrolled Barrister and Solicitor of the High Court of New Zealand, specializing in immigration law.

He is a former New Zealand Immigration Officer (Visa Services) and Border Officer at Auckland International Airport. He has several years of experience working in various Government Departments in New Zealand and has also worked as a Licensed Immigration Adviser at a prominent New Zealand Immigration firm.

His areas of expertise and interest are in the fields of General Skilled Migration, Temporary Work (Long and Short Stay), Business visas, Partner, Parent and Child Visa streams.

Mohamed was inspired to pursue a career in immigration by his own migration experiences. Over the years he has assisted individuals, families, large corporations, Professional sportspeople, and Entertainers (singers, speakers, and actors) to come to New Zealand.

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