Second Migrant Exploitation Protection Visa

INZ are actively focused on preventing migrant exploitation and sanctioning employers who are found to have exploited workers.    From 24 October 2023, persons holding Migrant Exploitation Protection Visas (“MEPVs”) who have not found suitable employment can apply for a second MEPV provided they meet the following requirements:

  • Show they have been looking for appropriate work.  Applicants must provide documents showing they have sought at least 2 AEWV eligible jobs over a 4-month period or more while holding their initial MEPV;
  • Those 2 jobs must have been for a similar role to their original employer-specific work visa and be paid at the rate required to meet AEWV requirements ie. meet the AEWV median wage threshold or the exemption rate applicable to the role; and
  • Must not have been found to have deliberately made a false report of exploitation.

There is no application fee.  If successful, the second MEPV will:

  • be granted for the shorter of 12 months from the date the first MEPV started, or the expiry date of the applicant’s original employer-specific work visa;
  • have the same visa conditions as the first MEPV; and
  • allow holders to work for any employer.

The MEPV is a temporary measure to allow people to leave an exploitative employer and remain lawfully in New Zealand (“NZ”) to find another job or arrange to return home.  It has no travel conditions so holders cannot leave NZ and return on an MEPV.  Holders cannot support visas for partners or children located offshore to join them in NZ. 

Please contact us if you or another visa holder is being exploited or is at risk of exploitation in the workplace.  We can help.