The two most common methods of obtaining Australian citizenship are:
- Citizenship by conferral; and
- Citizenship by descent.
What is citizenship by conferral?
Citizenship by conferral allows Australian permanent residents to become Australian citizens where they satisfy the residency requirements under the Citizenship Act. This means that they have:
- Been lawfully resident in Australia for the last four years at a minimum, with the year immediately prior to application being a permanent residency year;
- Have not spent more than 12 months outside of Australia in the past four years, including having not spent more than 90 days in the past year;
- Of good character; and
- Have intention to continue residing in Australia.
Applicants for this Citizenship must complete a citizenship test, unless they are 60 years or older.
What is citizenship by descent?
Citizenship by descent allows people born outside of Australia with an Australian citizen parent to acquire citizenship where the applicant is of good character. This may be particularly pertinent to those born in New Guinea prior to 16 September 1975 or those born to a citizen parent who pre-deceased the birth date of the applicant.
In addition to the above, the applicant must consider:
- Whether you can verify and establish your identity – may be particularly relevant to stateless persons or refugees with no identity documents;
- Whether you are of good character and have been for a significant period of time prior to your application;
- That you have calculated your eligibility correctly.
We can also help you with…
- Obtaining proof of your citizenship status.