Bonus points for Family Support


The aim of providing bonus points for close family in New Zealand is to recognise that the presence of close family enhances prospects for employability and settlement.

A principal applicant qualifies for 10 points for a close family member in New Zealand if that close family member:

 is the adult sibling or adult child, or parent, of a principal applicant, or of the principal applicant's partner included in the application; and is in New Zealand; and is a New Zealand or Australian citizen or the holder, or is considered to be the holder, of a residence class visa that is not subject to conditions under sections 49 or 50 of the Immigration Act 2009.

In all cases, an immigration officer must be satisfied that New Zealand is the primary place of established residence of the close family member at the time the application under the Skilled Migrant Category is made.

Note: A principal applicant will only qualify for points for a close family member of their partner included in their application, if an immigration officer is satisfied that the principal applicant and their partner have been living together for 12 months or more in a partnership that is genuine and stable and otherwise meets Partnership instructions.

Definition of 'adult sibling' and 'adult child'

For the purposes of these instructions, 'adult sibling' and 'adult child' mean a sibling or child aged 18 years or older. Siblings and children aged 18 to 24 must only be considered 'adult siblings' or 'adult children' if they can satisfy an immigration officer that they are not dependent. 

Evidence of relationship to close family member

To obtain points for having a close family member in New Zealand, a principal applicant must provide birth certificates, which establish the relationship of the close family member in New Zealand to the principal applicant or their partner included in the application; or evidence of adoption which establishes the relationship of the close family member in New Zealand to the principal applicant or their partner included in the application.

Evidence that New Zealand is the primary place of established residence

Where required by an immigration officer, applicants must provide evidence that New Zealand is the close family member's primary place of established residence. Evidence may include but is not limited to an original or certified copy of one of the following:

  • correspondence addressed to the close family member
  • employment records
  • records of benefit payments from the Ministry of Social Development
  • banking records
  • rates demands
  • Inland Revenue Department records
  • mortgage documents
  • tenancy and utility supply agreements
  • documents showing that the close family member's household effects have been moved to New Zealand.

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Ask our Licensed Immigration Adviser

If you want to find out more about obtaining the right visa for New Zealand, contact Julia Cooke, Licensed Immigration Adviser at NZIC.

Ask Julia for a Free Assessment