Parent Visa Applicants Dying While Waiting Due To Immigration Delays

Michael Yoon
Principal Immigration Lawyer

Despite promises, 12,000 parents of residents and citizens are still waiting, with only 500 applications processed last year. Contact Immigration Lawyer NZ for any questions.

Two years on, and here we are again. In this inz news, Thousands of families are fed up, and rightly so, with the staggering delays and the infuriating lottery system that Immigration New Zealand has put them through. We're talking about 12,000 parents of residents and citizens still waiting, yet only 500 have been picked to apply in the past year. It's a system that's not just flawed — it's broken.

You remember the grand announcement by Michael Wood back in October 2022, the new parent visa was supposed to clear the backlog within three to four years. Fast forward, and we've got parents who applied nearly a decade ago, some of whom have tragically died waiting.

One of these stories is Natasha Telles, whose father finally arrived in March, eight years after she applied. Her mother, however, didn't live to see the reunion, passing away during the wait, and had to watch her funeral through a screen due to Covid border closures. It's a tragic reminder of just how poorly managed this process has been.

Then there's Raina Vermani. Her parents-in-law from India have been stuck in this limbo since the category closed in 2016. The cap of 2500 places a year mainly goes to those already in the system, leaving thousands in a quarterly ballot, paying more fees with no guarantee of success. For them, it feels like a cash grab, a lottery with lives in the balance, raising around $6 million in revenue but delivering heartbreak and frustration.

Syed Khurram Iqbal, on the other hand, has made it to the visa application stage but is left in the dark about the processing time. He’s right to be frustrated — there’s no transparency, no clear communication. Immigration New Zealand seems to be flying blind, leaving applicants and their families in a constant state of uncertainty.

We've tinkered around the edges long enough. The government's promises need to mean something. Families shouldn't be subjected to a bureaucratic nightmare just to reunite with their loved ones. It’s high time — no, it’s past time — we had a system that respects and honours the contributions these families make to New Zealand.

It’s a national disgrace that we find ourselves here, still talking about this, with so little progress made. It’s not just about numbers, quotas, or processing times — it’s about real people, real families, and the real impact this shambles of a system has on their lives.

And that's the immigration news in Aotearoa today. Follow and subscribe to keep up with more immigration content like this. Ka Kite Ano.

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Last modified on 2 July 2024 by
Michael Yoon
Principal Immigration Lawyer
Michael has been working as a lawyer in New Zealand since 2006. Over the years, he has successfully helped thousands of clients to get their desired outcome. Clients find Michael knowledgeable, approachable and professional — a trusted expert.

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