Do you have a grievance or are not satisfied by how INZ (Immigration New Zealand) offers its services? Don’t just let it slip by, elicit a response by raising a formal complaint in their CFS (Complaints and Feedback System). Note that INZ may not accept your complaint based on specific factors. We can help in getting your grievance heard.

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Be a good Samaritan – don’t look the other way when you are not happy with INZ’s services; do something to improve the situation.
Make a complaint to allow the INZ to fix things, so customers like you do not have to suffer because of the way they get served. Your dissatisfaction may have to do with things like their administrative processes, tools, products, services offered or staff behaviour – the area of operation doesn’t matter, it is important to register your grievance and let INZ respond to it.

Does INZ respond to complaints?

INZ works under the MBIE (Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment). MBIE runs a well-known complaint handling process, promising complaint acknowledgement in 5 days and response in 20 days.
INZ also aims to serve the general public and its consumers with a complaints process that is accessible and easy to use. The goal of this customer-facing window is to allow the patrons to provide feedback, both positive and negative, about INZ’s services and its policies/procedures.
However, note that CFS rejects a lot of complaints right at the gate, so your feedback may never reach the INZ. Seek the guidance of an experienced immigration expert to ensure your grievance gets registered in the system. Our Auckland-based team of qualified immigration advisers can help you make your complaint, so it gets a response from the INZ. Book an absolutely free consultation to get started.

What complaints does CFS accept?

CFS has a high rate of rejecting the complaints it receives. However, here are some examples of complaints that have a higher chance of getting accepted in the system:
  • Issues with INZ’s facilities and systems
  • Matters related to publications like IACs (Internal Administrative Circulars) and other immigration orders
  • Problems with INZ services such as advice/communication, visa delays and staff attitude/behaviour
  • Concerns about processes used by the INZ including the ones adopted for making decisions
On the other hand, the CFS will not accept any complaints casting doubts on the “merits” of any verdict handed down by the INZ. Here is a partial list of items that will not make it into the CFS system:
  • How did INZ interpret immigration rules when adjudicating a given case?
  • What methods were adopted by the immigration officer to balance/weigh the factors related to a particular case when arriving at the verdict?
  • Was a specific decision fair in the light of how it affected the applicant(s) and the related family?
Another instance where INZ will not accept the complaint is when the immigration customer has already exhausted their right to appeal/reconsideration. Also, any complaints requesting reversal of application/compliance decisions will be refused.

What is the CFT (Central Feedback Team)?

Though you deal with just the CFS when filing your complaint, CFT is a significant link in the chain – it is the one that channels the complaint through the process. CFT is responsible for logging, triaging and assigning your complaint to the appropriate INZ division or office. In most cases, the location where the issue was noticed is handed the grievance for further processing.
CFT is also tasked with transferring the cases to the respective agencies, where another government branch may need to be involved in examining some aspects of the matter.
Here are some examples of complaints that INZ does not directly investigate; the CFT forwards them to a different MBIE section or an appropriate agency:
  • Allegations of corruption, dishonesty or fraud by staff – handed to the MBIE integrity team of the Corporate, Governance and Information Group
  • INZ’s immigration policies
  • Accusations against corrupt employers, educational institutes or other immigration consumers
  • Grievances related to services provided by other agencies
As you can see, the CFS has a high rate of rejecting complaints and the CFT transferring your grievance to a different agency or department may lead to you not getting a response in time or not at all. It takes a trained mind who has worked with the INZ complaint process for a long time to know how to file a complaint that will elicit a quick response from the INZ.
Immigration Advisers NZ knows the complaint process very well. Our qualified immigration professionals can help you get your grievance in the CFS, so it gets a speedy response. Book a 100% free consultation to see how we can help.

When can you raise a complaint?

As soon as possible. Yes, you read it right. Why would you want to wait before filing a complaint? Delaying it would not make the investigation any easier – on the other hand, time will only lead to the traces getting dimmed or lost.
Moreover, INZ places time limits on your right to make a complaint. Any complaints related to service delivery must be made in the 6-month window of the event – this does not apply to grievance related to delays. Few exceptional circumstances may lead to INZ/CFT making an exception and picking your complaint beyond 6 months, but such gestures are rare.
If your complaint gets rejected, INZ will contact you (usually within 3 days) informing you of their decision and may even offer suggestions on how you could follow up the matter.
INZ has done an excellent job in putting together a well-defined complaint-handling process. However, it is marred with a high rejection rate – so your well-meaning feedback may never get to the right folks. If you are serious about your complaint making a difference, click here to book a complimentary consultation session with our immigration consultants and let us guide you.

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