A migrant bride-to-be says she is "dancing" with joy after Immigration New Zealand made a u-turn on its decision to block her sister from coming to New Zealand as her bridesmaid.
Bahare Safamanesh, 37, originally from Iran, told the Herald a fortnight ago that her February wedding plans are in tatters because she had no family here and was counting on her sister to be both her wedding planner and bridesmaid.
INZ said then that her 38-year-old sister Behnaz Safamanesh's application for a visa was declined because of concerns that she was not a bona fide visitor to New Zealand.
Manager Michael Carley said even though her application for visitor visa was declined, the agency has offered her a limited visa.
"INZ received additional information following Ms Safamanesh's initial application, which was used during a review of our decision," Carley said.
"In light of that new information, INZ has offered a limited visa which means, once Ms Safamanesh accepts our offer, she can visit New Zealand for the express purpose to attend her sister's wedding as a bridesmaid."
An overjoyed Bahare said of the offer: "Immigration changed their mind and granted a visa to my sister ... I'm dancing."
She also posted on the "Immigration NZ's unfair decision" Facebook group saying she believed people could change immigration decisions.
"I am pleased to say that we won and they accepted their mistake," Bahare said.
"Although they gave her a limited visa, [it's] almost the same conditions as a visitor visa ... keep defending your rights people."
Limited visas can be granted to people who would not be accepted for other visa types because of a risk that they might overstay or for those who choose it as their preferred method of entry.
Reasons for the grant of limited purpose visas include medical treatments, family emergency, short course studies or special event such as wedding, funeral, reunion or sporting event.
Bahare, who runs an architecture business, was born and raised in Iran and moved to NZ first as an international student in 2011.
She is planning to marry her Kiwi-born fiance Matthew Cross on February 9 next year.