Variation of travel conditions and giving birth for Australians in NZ
Hello, I have two questions.
We are an Australian couple and we would like to give birth in NZ. What would be the steps in terms of finding a midwife or registering with a hospital? Do we just show up at the hospital and that's it?
Second question is about the "variation of travel conditions". I understand that residence is automatically given to Australians upon entry and we can apply for "variation of travel conditions" in order to leave NZ and enable continuation of our residence visa. As we were thinking of applying for formal permanent residence in NZ how long can we stay out of NZ under this "variation of travel conditions"?
I read that it can be granted for even two years. Does that mean that we could obtain the residence in NZ, have the "variation of travel conditions" granted, be out of NZ for a bit less than two years, then come back and obtain the permanent residence?
Thanks for your help.
The majority of Midwives here are independent of the District Health Boards (DHB's) and you would approach one directly that has been recommended in the community or by friends etc. There is also an online database for a list of midwives Find Your Midwife
Once you know a midwife name and contact details you would get in touch and ask that they take you on. The midwife would ask you a series or questions to ascertain if you would be a good fit for them, depending on workload, potential for a difficult birth etc etc. If they take you on they would be at your beck in the community or at home 24/7 all through your pregnancy and for a fixed period afterwards. Maternity services are free for NZ residents. If the midwife took you on they would claim funding for taking you on their books until the fixed period after the birth has ended.
If the midwife couldn't take you on they may recommend another.
If you couldn't register with any of these midwives, you can of course register at a local hospital or with the local District Health Board and their team of midwives in the maternity unit, however a single midwife would not be at your beck and call 24/7.
As Australian citizens and assuming you meet the basic criteria for character and health you can live study and work in NZ without the need of obtaining a visa before travel. Assuming you declare you want to remain in NZ permanently, you would be given an NZ Resident Visa at the border by Immigration NZ but that visa comes with immediate expiry travel conditions meaning if you left NZ the NZ Resident Visa would expire. If you remained for a period of 2 years without leaving NZ you could apply for NZ PR which does not have any travel conditions allowing you to remain in NZ permanently but also allows you to come and go as you please. After a total period of 5 years you could apply for citizenship.
If you did leave NZ whilst here on the NZ Resident Visa, it would expire the moment you left the country and you would just get a new one on your return (as you are Australian).......but the clock for PR and Citizenship would start ticking again from that point and it would be another 2 years till you could apply for PR and another 5 years for citizenship.
There is such thing as a 'Variation of Travel Conditions', however in the case of the NZ Resident Visa available to you (i.e. ones that have an immediate expiry travel condition) I don't think you can change that fact so I don't think you would be successful in applying for that Variation. The 'Variation of Travel Conditions' are only usually approved in extreme cases and only for temporary periods. In your case there are other options in that you could easily get back in to the country as you are Australian so would get another NZ Resident Visa on your return. The fact that you lose visa continuity and lose eligibility to apply for PR and ultimately citizenship is your predicament and not something that is considered by INZ.
To be eligible for PR you must have held NZRV for at least 2 years AND meet ONE of five set criteria. The ONE that most people meet is that they have spent sufficient time in NZ in the previous 2 years prior to applying for PR....must have spent at least 184 days in NZ in the previous 2 years prior to applying for PR.
Also, if you are pregnant now you may not meet the required acceptable standard of health for entry in to NZ and/or entry for pregnant ladies may be restricted ? Your health status must be declared as part of Immigration Law and prior to entry. INZ may refuse entry permission before you have given birth as you will be a cost to the NZ healthcare system and any child born to you in NZ whilst you are here on a permanent visa would automatically be an NZ citizen.
Thank you for your answer. Sorry, but I thought that Australian citizens are treated equally as New Zealand permanent residents, I checked online and we are eligible for public medical care. Why would pregnancy be a reason for rejection of entry when Australians are treated as more or less permanent residence of NZ? Of course we don't have any criminal history nor medical issues.
Nothing is a guarantee unless it is in your hand and I am merely pointing that out.
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