Navigating the Maze: Losing Your Job on an AEWV in New Zealand

Navigating the Maze: Losing Your Job on an AEWV in New Zealand
Losing a job is never easy, but for those who are in New Zealand on an Accredited Employer Work Visa (AEWV), it can be especially nerve-wracking. In this blog, we will provide you with an informative and engaging guide to navigating the maze of uncertainty that follows. We’ll cover the consequences, the steps you need to take, and the resources available to you.

Understanding the AEWV and Its Implications

The AEWV replaced the Essential Skills Work Visa. This visa allows people to work in New Zealand for an accredited employer for a duration of up to three years. Here are some key points to keep in mind:
  • The AEWV is job-specific: it allows you to work for a specific employer in a specific role.
  • If you lose your job, you may no longer meet the requirements of the visa.
  • There are grace periods and provisions available to those who lose their jobs, which we’ll explore further below.

Consequences of Losing Your Job

When you lose your job on an AEWV, there can be several consequences:
  • You may be required to find a new job within a specific time frame.
  • Your ability to remain in New Zealand may be jeopardized.
  • You may face challenges when attempting to find a new job and/or visa.

Steps to Take Immediately After Job Loss

Here are the steps you should take if you lose your job while on an AEWV:
  • Notify Immigration New Zealand (INZ): Inform INZ of the change in your employment situation as soon as possible.
  • Check your visa conditions: Understand the grace period and provisions applicable to you.
  • Begin the job search: Start looking for a new job immediately.

Your Rights and Responsibilities

If you lose your job while on an AEWV, you should be aware of your rights and responsibilities:
  • Grace period: You may be allowed a grace period (usually around 1-3 months) to find new employment.
  • Your new job must meet AEWV requirements: The new job you find must meet specific salary thresholds and be with an accredited employer.
  • You may need to apply for a new visa: If you find a new job that meets the AEWV requirements, you must apply for a variation of conditions on your existing visa or a new visa altogether.

Exploring Your Options for a New Visa

If you can’t find a suitable job within the grace period, you may need to explore other visa options:
  • Skilled Migrant Category Resident Visa: If you have the skills, qualifications, and work experience needed in New Zealand, you may be eligible for this visa.
  • Talent (Arts, Culture, Sports) Work Visa: If you have exceptional talent in a specific field, you may be eligible for this visa.
  • Partner or Dependent Visas: If you have a partner or dependent in New Zealand, you may be eligible to apply for a visa under their sponsorship.

Tips on Finding a New Job in New Zealand

Here are some tips to help you find a new job in New Zealand while on an AEWV:
  • Update your CV: Ensure your CV is up-to-date and tailored to the New Zealand job market. Highlight your skills, qualifications, and relevant work experience.
  • Networking: Reach out to contacts in your industry or attend networking events to expand your connections.
  • Job search websites: Make use of job search websites such as Seek, Trade Me Jobs, and Work and Income New Zealand.
  • Recruitment agencies: Register with reputable recruitment agencies that specialize in your field of expertise.
  • Social media: Utilize professional social media platforms like LinkedIn to showcase your skills, connect with potential employers, and search for job opportunities.
  • Volunteering: Volunteering in your industry can help you gain experience, make connections, and demonstrate your commitment to potential employers.
  • Be prepared for interviews: Research common interview questions and practice your answers. Be ready to demonstrate your knowledge of the company and your enthusiasm for the role.

Resources and Support Available

There are several resources and support services available to help you navigate the challenges of losing your job on an AEWV:
  • Immigration New Zealand (INZ): INZ provides guidance on visa options, eligibility criteria, and application processes. Visit their website or contact their helpline for more information.
  • Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB): CAB offers free, confidential advice on a range of topics, including employment and immigration issues.
  • Work and Income New Zealand: This government agency provides information on job opportunities, job search support, and financial assistance for those who are eligible.
  • Community Law Centres: These centers provide free legal advice on a variety of issues, including employment and immigration law.
  • New Zealand Human Rights Commission: If you believe you have been treated unfairly or discriminated against in the workplace, the Human Rights Commission can provide information and support.


Losing your job while on an AEWV in New Zealand can be a challenging experience, but with the right information, resources, and support, it is possible to navigate the process and bounce back. By understanding the implications of your job loss, taking immediate action, and utilizing available resources, you can increase your chances of finding a new job and maintaining your visa status in New Zealand. Stay proactive, stay informed, and never lose hope!

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