New Zealand is an incredibly beautiful country, with stunning landscapes and friendly people. It's no wonder that many people look to become citizens of this nation. Becoming a New Zealand citizen offers many benefits, including eligibility for certain jobs and greater travel opportunities through the New Zealand passport. In this article, we will cover everything you need to know about applying for New Zealand citizenship including the eligibility criteria, the application process, pathways and more.
There are three ways to obtain New Zealand Citizenship, these are:
To be a citizen by birth, you would have to be born in New Zealand before 1 January 2006. If you were born in New Zealand on or after 1 January 2006 you are a citizen by birth if one of your parents was a New Zealand citizen or had a visa which allowed them to live in New Zealand permanently.
To be a citizen by descent, you may be eligible if you were born overseas and at least one of your parents is a New Zealand citizen by birth or by grant when you were born.+
To be eligible for citizenship by grant, you were born outside of New Zealand or born in New Zealand on or after 1 January 2006 to parents that were not New Zealand citizens or residents at the time of birth.
To be eligible for NZ citizenship, applicants must meet certain criteria. These eligibility criteria are:
There is an eligibility exception for children aged 15 years where they do not have to be present in New Zealand for at least 1,350 days if their parent meets this requirement.
Children aged 13 years and under are exceptions to the character requirement.
It is important to note that any time spent in New Zealand before residency does not count towards the 1350-day presence requirement.
If you do not meet the New Zealand citizenship eligibility criteria listed above, it can be very difficult to obtain citizenship.
In cases where you do not meet the requirements, this will need to be explained in your application which will be assessed by a case officer. Further information may be requested from you and processing times for your application may be extended. The case officer will provide a recommendation to the Minister of Internal Affairs who gives the final decision for your case.
If you do not meet one of the eligibility criteria, it is recommended to contact a licensed immigration adviser to discuss your current circumstances and whether your application will be successful.
Malcolm Pacific NZ Immigration advisers are experts in New Zealand immigration law and Citizenship Applications, call us today for a free consultation.
New Zealand is a country that offers many visa pathways to citizenship, depending on your individual situation. In most cases, you must find a pathway to obtain Residence of New Zealand based on your current circumstances.
There are several visas that lead to residence, examples of these are:
After 5 years of holding a Resident Visa, you may be able to apply for citizenship in New Zealand if you meet the above-mentioned eligibility criteria.
It’s important to note that citizenship application processing times can vary depending on individual circumstances so it’s best to get advice from a licensed Immigration adviser if you need help understanding the New Zealand Immigration process and eligibility requirements.
Malcolm Pacific Immigration are a firm of NZ Immigration Advisers that want to make your dream of living in New Zealand a reality. Our skilled team of professionals have the knowledge and expertise to assist you with all aspects of the immigration process.
If you’re ready to take the next step, contact us today for a free consultation.
Currently, there are no specific citizenship categories specific to Australian residents.
Australian residents would have to apply for citizenship under one of the three New Zealand citizenship categories.
For Samoan residents, you are eligible for the Samoan Citizenship by Grant if you came to New Zealand after 14 September 1982 and hold either of the following:
Under this category, applicants do not have to be in New Zealand for at least 1350 days during the 5-year period prior to your application.
The first step to applying for New Zealand citizenship is to determine if you are eligible. You must ensure that you meet all the eligibility criteria mentioned above before continuing onto Step 2.
Once you have determined that you are eligible, you will need to fill out all the required documents needed to apply for NZ citizenship, most are now available online.
NZ Citizenship application documents include:
Once you have gathered all the required documents, you can submit your application and supporting documents to the Department of Internal Affairs. You can do this online or by post. If submitting by post, make sure that all documents are properly authenticated before sending them off.
It is time to wait for a decision from Immigration New Zealand. This process can take up to one year depending on the complexity of your case and current processing times at Immigration New Zealand. Once they have made their decision, they will notify you via mail or email with their decision.
The standard application fee is $470.20 NZD for adults aged 16 years and over, and $235.10 NZD for children aged 15 and under.
Dual citizenship is where you are a citizen of two different countries at the same time.
You are allowed to have dual citizenship in New Zealand, however other countries may not allow it.
If you are already a citizen of a foreign country, you should check if that country allows dual citizenship before applying for citizenship in New Zealand. Check the other country’s rules first, in some cases you may have to ask for permission.
Becoming a citizen of New Zealand is an exciting opportunity that comes with many benefits and privileges. To be offered New Zealand citizenship, applicants must meet certain eligibility requirements and provide necessary documentation.
From this article, the process of applying for New Zealand citizenship should be easier to understand and navigate. If you still have questions regarding your application or if you are not sure if you are eligible, Malcolm Pacific Immigration can help.
Malcolm Pacific Immigration is committed to providing clients with the highest quality of service and immigration expertise. If you are applying for New Zealand Citizenship and require immigration advice, contact Malcolm Pacific Immigration today.
Our highly experienced licensed Immigration team will take away the stress and worry of navigating the complicated world of New Zealand Immigration. All you need to do is get in touch. Our team is on standby, ready to help.
Our highly experienced licensed Immigration team will take away the stress and worry of navigating the complicated world of New Zealand Immigration. All you need to do is get in touch. Our employer team is on standby, ready to help.
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Today the government announced a pathway to residence for migrant workers who are living and working in New Zealand. Applications open on 1 December 2021 for the first wave who are eligible to apply. The second wave can apply from 1 March 2022. The deadline to lodge an application is 31 July 2022 or else they will miss out on this one off opportunity.
Today the government announced a pathway to residence for people living and working in New Zealand. Applications open on 1 December 2021 for the first wave eligible to apply. The second wave can apply from 1 March 2022. The deadline to lodge an application is 31 July 2022 or else you miss the boat.
The government has moved the introduction of the new employer accreditation process across to mid-2022. At the same time, the Minister of Immigration announced new work visa rules for migrant workers who are already in New Zealand and working full time.
The government has increased the median wage to $27 per hour from 19 July. Any Skilled Migrant residence application lodged after this date will need to include a skilled job offer that pays at least $27 per hour. For some lower-skilled occupations, the minimum pay rate increases to $40.50 per hour.
From 19 July 2021
From 30 June 2021
Employers of migrant workers must become accredited from 1 November 2021 before work visa applications can be processed. Most employers are not accredited. Those that are accredited will have to roll into the new system when it goes live in late September.
From mid-2020 (delayed)
Skilled occupation "Dairy Cattle Farmer" spilt into three occupations. New occupations are: "Dairy Farm Manager", "Assistant Dairy Farm Manager" and "Dairy Herd Manager". Each sit at different skill levels, therefore, the award of points will depend on pay rates, job tasks and other requirements.
From 15 February 2021
The government has deferred the fortnightly selection of Expressions of Interest from the Skilled Migrant pool for six months (to be reviewed in April 2021). Invitations to Apply for Residence remain suspended. The last selection from the Skilled Migrant pool took place on 18/03/2020.
From 7 October 2020
The government added four new occupations that are now regarded as skilled employment and may qualify for job offer points under the Skilled Migrant Category. These are:
Aged or disabled carer, Bicycle mechanic, Driller and Nursing Support worker.
From 27 July 2020
Anyone invited by Immigration NZ to apply for residence under the Skilled Migrant Category where their invitation is dated between 1 November 2019 and 15 April 2020 (inclusive) has now been granted an additional six months to lodge their residence application.
From 27 May 2020
The government has deferred the fortnightly selection of Expressions of Interest from the Skilled Migrant pool. This means Invitations to Apply for Residence are also suspended. Malcolm Pacific Immigration does not anticipate selections to resume until after the general election held on 17 October 2020.
Immigration NZ is now prioritising Skilled Migrant Residence applications where the main (principal) applicant meets the criteria:
From 24 February 2020
From 7 October 2019
The government recently added more occupations that are now to be regarded as skilled employment and may qualify for job offer points under the Skilled Migrant Category. In order to qualify for points, the job must be paying at least the current median wage (or higher for certain occupations) at the time the residence application is lodged.
From 1 November 2021
From 1 November 2021 anyone who is not a NZ citizen must be fully vaccinated (unless exempt) before travelling to New Zealand. Fully vaccinated means your last dose of vaccine was given at least 14 days before travelling and it was an approved vaccine.
Applications for employer accreditation closed at the end of June 2021. Applications lodged before the closure date are still being processed. New applications for accreditation open on 9 May 2022. The process will be quite different to what employers have experienced in the past. Businesses will need to meet minimum standards.
Wednesday, 1 December is fast approaching and it is estimated that around 16,000 individuals and families can apply in the first wave for the 2021 Resident Visa opening next month. It is exciting for the thousands of people who have been waiting patiently to become residents that finally the finish line is in sight.
The first wave of applicants can apply from 1 December 2021. Around 16,000 applications are expected in this first wave. The second wave opens on 1 March 2022. In total, the government expects approximately 110,000 applications that will include about 165,000 people.
The second group of workers who can apply online for the 2021 Resident Visa that opens on 1 March 2022 are those who hold an eligible work visa and either meet "Settled", "Skilled" or "Scarce" as set out above. In total Immigration NZ estimate around 110,000 people will qualify to apply for this visa.
The first group of workers who can apply online for the 2021 Resident Visa that opens on 1 December 2021 are those that on 29/09/2021:
Is this the only requirement to qualify for residence? No. In addition to the eligible work visa criteria workers also need to be regarded as one of the following:
People who were lawfully in NZ (or in Australia when the travel bubble closed between April and July 2021) on 29/09/2021 need to meet the visa eligibility criteria:
The government has introduced a limited pathway to residence for people who are already living and working in New Zealand. Applications open on 1 December 2021 for the first wave of people eligible to apply. The second wave opens on 1 March 2022. The deadline to apply for the 2021 Resident Visa is 31 July 2022.
A small number of critical health workers (taking up jobs for six months or longer) or specialist workers (taking up jobs that are for longer than six months) who were granted border exemptions may also have eligibility for the 2021 Resident Visa. They will need to have arrived in NZ and lodge a 2021 Resident Visa application.
*Excludes high-risk countries.
*Excludes high-risk countries.
The work visa categories set to close are:
In order to address labour shortages in New Zealand's crucial industries the NZ government has implemented a "Green List" of sought-after high-skill occupations. This list offers a prioritised pathway to residency.
There are qualification and/or occupational registration requirements to meet. Occupations are broken down into two tiers:
The recent additions in May 2023 across many sectors on the Green List NZ can be found here