Under section 78A of the Immigration Act 2009 (“Act”), by special direction, I extend for a period of five months from the date on which they would otherwise expire, the visas held by the following class of people:
Every person in New Zealand on 4 September 2020 who holds a visitor visa with an expiry date (or an event or period based expiry, in accordance with section 62(2)(c) of the Act), of 4 September 2020 to 31 October 2020 (inclusive), with the exception of holders of a critical purpose visitor visa granted under the critical purpose category (as referenced in COVID-19 Support Restricted Temporary Entry immigration instructions at H5.25.1) who arrived after the 23 March 2020 and holders of visitor visas held by guardians of student visa holders, partners, and dependants.
To avoid doubt, visitor visas held by partners and dependants of employer-assisted work visa holders that were extended by Special Direction dated 17 August 2020 (as published on the Immigration New Zealand website) are not affected by this extension.
To avoid doubt, visas that expire in accordance with section 63(2) of the Act are not included.
I am satisfied that the making of this special direction is reasonably necessary to manage the effects, or deal with the consequences of, measures taken under the Act or any other enactment to contain or mitigate the outbreak of COVID-19 or its effects. This is because with border restrictions, these visitor visa holders may face difficulty departing New Zealand and, due to the impact of COVID-19, there would be significant issues with processing further visa applications from this group.
This special direction expires on 31 October 2020.
Dated this 2nd day of September 2020.
Hon KRIS FA’AFOI, Minister of Immigration.
The effect of this special direction is to extend the visas of the class of persons described in this direction (being people who are onshore in New Zealand on some temporary visitor visas that expire during a specified time) as these visa holders may face difficulty departing New Zealand and, due to the impact of COVID-19, there would be significant issues with processing further visa applications from this group. Some types of visitor visas are not included due to their specific type of visitor visa being linked to a primary applicant (such as a student or long term worker). Certain other visitor visa holders whose visas have already been extended are not affected as the extension of their expiry dates means they fall outside of the class of persons this direction applies to. Any conditions attached to these visas continue.