Appeals, Reviews and staying legally in NZ

  • Has your visa been declined or has it expired?
  • Do you face deportation?

To stay in New Zealand once your visa has been declined or if something happens so you no longer meet the conditions of your visa, it is important to act quickly.

There are ways to appeal and challenge visa declines, and avenues to get a visa granted by special direction. There are usually very strict requirements for these appeals and reviews to succeed, and using a qualified and licensed immigration adviser can improve your chances of success because a successful appeal is based on a legal challenge not an emotional plea. They best way to make a strong case for a visa is by making a strong legal case for your situation. Since the decision to grant a visa through an appeal is up to INZ's discretion, sad stories of why you can't go home are not often successful. 

If you want to appeal or ask for a review because INZ have declined your visa application it is very important to contact us as soon as possible. There are very tight time restraints on when you are able to ask for a review and the currency of your current visa can be important too. If you wait too long you may miss out on the chance to appeal and you may be deported. In some cases you need to be unlawfully in NZ before you make an appeal, it depends on your situation.

Specialist area of law and immigration law

It is in your best interests to have a professional prepare and manage your appeal as we have special knowledge of administrative justice as well as the case law around areas of judicial review which may be vital to the success of the appeal. As INZ staff are generally not legally trained, the mistakes they make vary in many ways. Members of the IPT are legally trained so an appeal from a legal perspective adds strength and value to your appeal case by helping the immigration officer or Immigration Protection Tribunal (IPT), more clearly understand the circumstances that make it appropriate for your to be granted a visa to stay in New Zealand. We talk to you about your case in language you can understand, and present your case to the proper authorities in language that they respect. In this way your chances of success are much improved.

This is an area that we like to specilaise in and while it can be very difficult at times, it is very satisfying to be able to reverse an injust decision. 

Section 61 request

A section 61 request is a special type of appeal that can help if you have no other way to stay in New Zealand. There are very specific conditions to being able to submit a section 61 request, and this is generally an emergency type of action, not something you would plan to do from the start. This type of appeal is a request to consider your situation, and can be refused for no reason if they wish.

To be eligible to submit a section 61 request, you must:

  • Be unlawfully in NZ (no current visa)
  • Must not have been served with a deportation or removal order
  • Have a very good reason why you deserve special consideration

Reconsideration Request

If you are still legally in New zealand and you think INZ has made a mistake on your application, you can ask for it to be reconsidered. There needs to be strong legal reasons why the reconsideration should be made, not just because you don't agree with the decision. These can be successful if done quickly and if there is clear evidence that the case officer hasn't done their job properly. This is reasonably common, but there is still a lot of difficulty with this type of request because INZ do not often readily admit their mistakes.

Overstaying in New Zealand

Whatever happens, the first thing you need to do is get professional advice. if you end up overstaying or working illegally, this will only make your situation worse. We can help you plan the most advantageous pathway for the long term. This may include an appeal, or a new application if possible, and it may also include a strategic withdraw from New Zealand to be able to come back stronger. Everything depends on your unique situation. 

Ministerial intervention

It is possible to ask the Minister of immigration to intervene directly in your case. The Minister does have the discretion and power to do so, and receives many requests for such assistance. This tends to be the very last resort, and is not a very successful option in most cases. If your situation is such that it is in the Minister's or Government's interests that your appeal should succeed, then we may be able to make a case for you to the Minister with a positive outcome.

A direct request to the Minister needs to be very special and there needs to be a good reason why the request would be granted.

Process to appeal or ask for a review?

If you have a situation where you think you might be eligible for an appeal, or if you have no other avenue and you need to do something, then contact us by email, either or . Please send your decline letters or any other correspondence from INZ first.

If you are appealing to the IPT or asking INZ for a review or special request, then it is very important that you act quickly. There are various time frames for appeals and if you are too late, you may have no choice but to leave New Zealand.

We will get back to you as soon as possible after receiving your information. if you do not get our answer within 24 hours, please contact us directly by phone 027 275 2677