Since the Accredited Employer Work Visa (AEWV) opened in July 2022, 73,186 people applied for it in the fiscal year 2022-2023. In total, 234,289 people applied for work visas in FY 22-23, including temporary (like the Working Holiday Visa) and permanent (like the AEWV) visas. One of the critical concerns for any employee should be their employer’s legitimacy and track record.

There have been instances where skilled workers were lured to New Zealand with lucrative job offers, only to discover that the jobs were not as promised or needed to be fulfilled. To avoid such situations, it is crucial to check the validity of the employer.

Regular Checks by NZ Immigration  

New Zealand Immigration regularly checks and verifies accredited employers to ensure they follow the guidelines. Suppose an employer is found guilty of breaching employment standards. In that case, they are placed in a “stand down period,” where they are prohibited from hiring migrant workers.

How to Find Employers on the Stand-Down List  

To check if an employer is on the stand-down list, follow these steps:

  1. Visit the Immigration New Zealand Website: Go to the official Immigration New Zealand website:

    Stand Down List.

  2. Search for Employers: You can search for specific employers by name or business registration number to see if they are on the list.
  3. Check Regularly: The list is updated regularly, so ensure you have the latest information.
  4. Contact Immigration New Zealand: If you have questions, contact Immigration New Zealand for more information.

Understanding the Stand Down Period  

What is the Stand Down Period?  

The stand-down period is a rule in New Zealand that temporarily prevents employers who have broken employment laws from hiring migrant workers. This rule is set by immigration instructions, not by the Labour Inspectorate.

 Why is the Stand Down Period Important?  

The stand-down period helps protect migrant workers by ensuring employers follow the law. It makes sure that only fair and law-abiding employers can hire migrant workers, creating a safer and more just workplace.

 What Causes a Stand Down Period?  

Employers can face a stand-down period for several reasons, such as:

  • Not paying the minimum wage: Employers must pay at least the minimum wage set by law. If they don’t, they can be penalized.
  • Not following holiday rules: Employers must give employees the correct amount of holiday leave and public holidays.
  • Illegal deductions: Employers can only take money out of an employee’s pay with proper authorization.
  • Poor record-keeping: Employers must keep accurate wages, hours worked, and leave records.

 How Long is the Stand Down Period?  

The length of the stand-down period depends on how severe the breach is:

  • Single Infringement: Typically results in a stand-down period of about six months.
  • Multiple Infringement: This can result in a stand-down period of up to 12 months or more.

 Impact on Employers and Workers  

For Employers:  

  • Can’t Hire Migrant Workers: During the stand-down period, employers cannot hire new migrant workers, affecting their business, mainly if they rely on migrant labour.
  • Damage to Reputation: Being on the stand-down list can hurt an employer’s reputation, making it harder to attract local and migrant workers.

For Migrant Workers:  

  • Protection from Exploitation: The stand-down period helps ensure migrant workers are treated fairly.
  • Job Security: Migrant workers can feel more secure knowing they work for compliant employers.

 How Employers Can Avoid the Stand Down Period  

Employers can avoid being on the stand-down list by:

  • Following Employment Laws: Pay the correct wages, provide the proper leave entitlements, and keep good records.
  • Regular Audits: Check their employment practices regularly to fix any issues.
  • Training and Education: Educate their staff about employment laws and best practices.


The stand-down period is essential for ensuring that employers in New Zealand treat their workers fairly and follow the law. By understanding and complying with these rules, employers can avoid penalties, and migrant workers can be protected from exploitation.

By following the steps outlined above, employees can quickly check the validity of their potential employers and ensure a safe and lawful working environment in New Zealand.


About ICL Immigration

ICL Immigration, based in Auckland, is an established licensed immigration adviser and immigration consultant with over 20 years of experience and a remarkable 97% approval rate. We’ve helped over 1,000 immigrants realise their New Zealand settlement dreams.

We specialise in various visa services, including student, residency, work visas and business-related services like employer accreditation. We ensure personalised solutions for individuals and businesses aiming to navigate New Zealand’s immigration landscape successfully.

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