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Changes to 90-day trial periods on AEWV & AEWV labour hire (triangular) employment threshold workers

Updated: Oct 19, 2023


Effective from October 29, there are important changes to the employment rules for Accredited Employer Work Visas (AEWV) in New Zealand. Here's a simplified breakdown:

1. No More 90-Day Trial Periods for AEWV Holders

  • Starting October 29, accredited employers cannot use 90-day trial periods when hiring individuals on AEWV.

  • This change aims to ensure fair treatment of migrant workers, encouraging employers to hire based on genuine labour needs or skills gaps.

  • Job Check applications must not include trial periods in employment agreements.

  • Using trial periods may lead to the revocation of an employer's accreditation.

2. Changes to Accreditation Suspension

  • Effective from October 29, an employer's accreditation can be suspended during any active steps by immigration authorities or other regulators to confirm compliance with various standards.

  • Accredited employers are not allowed to pass certain costs on to migrant workers (both new visa applicants, as well as those who already hold a visa).

3. AEWV Labour Hire Threshold Increased

  • From November 27, accredited employers in the labour hire (triangular) sector placing migrants in specific construction occupations must have at least 35% of their workforce as New Zealand citizens and residents (up from 15%).

  • The threshold will be assessed both during accreditation and Job Check stages.

  • Existing employers won't lose accreditation if they continue to meet the 15% threshold, but new Job Checks won't be approved until the new 35% threshold is met.

4. Specific Occupations Affected

  • A triangular employer is one who employs staff to assign them to a controlling third party. This employment arrangement involves three parties, each with distinct relationships.

  • The increased threshold applies to labour hire employers dealing with specific construction occupations, including bricklayers, carpenters, plumbers, and more

5. Processing Time Changes

  • Immigration New Zealand has adjusted the AEWV assessment approach, leading to longer processing times.

  • Most applications are taking more than 10 days to process.

  • Employers are encouraged to allow at least six weeks for accreditation and Job Check applications.

6. How Employers Can Help

  • For employer accreditation, evidence of a genuine and viable business, such as financial statements, should be provided.

  • Job Check applications should focus on current vacancies, and all required documentation must be included.

  • Multiple vacancies in one job check should include additional evidence of their genuineness.

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