Risk of deportation

You might be wondering when you could be at risk of deportation and how you could get there.

Terms such as a Deportation Liability Notice and Deportation Order can be challenging to understand without an immigration lawyer. You might have questions such as how soon do you need to leave New Zealand if you are facing deportation or if there is any way you can remain in the country. Will you be allowed to return to New Zealand after deportation?

Deportation can be a hard case to argue against; however, at Pacific Legal, we are here to support you and your case in any way we can.

When could I be at risk of deportation?

You could be at risk of deportation if you are in New Zealand “unlawfully” (illegally) – for example, if your visa has now expired, but you have remained in New Zealand.

If you are lawfully in New Zealand and hold a current Temporary Visa or Resident Visa, but you have done something wrong, like breaking the law (for example, committed a driving offence), or you may have breached the conditions of your visa (for example, by working when you only have a visitor visa), or withholding relevant information from Immigration New Zealand when you applied for a visa, you could also face deportation.

Depending on your circumstances, you could be served with a deportation liability notice or a deportation liability questionnaire or a deportation order by Immigration New Zealand. It is vital that you act quickly and contact an immigration lawyer, such as Pacific Legal, to obtain advice.

Deportation Liability Notice

A Deportation Liability Notice alerts a person that they are at serious risk of being deported from New Zealand. The notice should set out the basis for deportation as well as the time limits for seeking cancellation or appealing deportation if such rights exist.

Deportation Order

A Deportation Order allows Immigration New Zealand or the NZ Police to immediately act to take the affected person out of New Zealand. This can happen as soon as the Deportation Order is served. Generally, Deportation Orders may only be served after the affected person has exhausted their legal rights of appeal or cancellation or has done nothing to exercise those rights within the prescribed timeframes for doing so.

Typically, you do not have to leave the country right away. You may have options to pursue. In many cases, you may be able to appeal against your deportation liability within specific timeframes. It is essential to know and understand all of your options. Leaving things to the last minute can mean losing any chance a person has in remaining in New Zealand.

Whether you will be allowed to remain in New Zealand will largely depend on what activated your deportation liability in the first place, as well as on any mitigating factors that you might have.

Generally, the stronger your connection is to New Zealand, the better your chances of being allowed to remain here. For instance, if you have family members in New Zealand, who are New Zealand citizens and/or New Zealand residents, this could assist you with your arguments for being allowed to remain.

When it comes to criminal convictions in New Zealand, generally, the nature of the criminal offence and its severity have a corresponding impact on your prospects of being allowed to remain in New Zealand. Every situation is different, and there are many factors that might help you fight deportation.

Returning to New Zealand after deportation

Generally, it would be very difficult for someone who was deported to be allowed to return to New Zealand. Professional advice and assistance are highly recommend if a person is trying to come back following deportation.

In a very limited number of instances, you might be able to return. Under the Immigration Act 2009, there are bans on re-entry to New Zealand if you have been deported. These bans range from two to five years if you have been in New Zealand unlawfully, but for more serious reasons for deportation like criminal convictions, provision of false or misleading information or immigration fraud, there are permanent bans (i.e. meaning you can never come back).

From our experience, in most instances, it is advisable to challenge or fight your deportation liability while you are still in New Zealand rather than trying to return to New Zealand once you have been deported.

Pacific Legal are experts in hard cases

If you are facing deportation, contact Pacific Legal as soon as possible, so we can challenge or fight your case while you are still in New Zealand. We have overturned several decisions successfully and will support you in any way we can with your case.