New Zealand Citizens (Subclass 189 Visa)

In acknowledgement of the special bilateral agreement between Australia and New Zealand, From the 1/07/2017 there is an additional streamlined pathway for New Zealand Citizens to apply for Permanent residency.

This pathway is for New Zealand Citizens who have been living in Australia for at least five years and can show  continuous contribution and commitment to Australia.

The eligibility criteria includes:

  • Hold a Special category Subclass 444 visa
  • Have been usually resident in Australia for a continuous period of five years immediately prior to the application lodgement and that you commenced this period of residency after 19/02/2016
  • Demonstrating through income tax returns that you have earned a taxable income that is at least equivalent to the Temporary Skilled Income Threshold for the qualifying period – A minimum of four notices will need to be provided  (exemption apply)


The income threshold for the last five years is as follows:

2012/2013 – AUD$51000

2013/2014 – AUD$53,900

2014/2015 – AUD$53,900

2015/2016 – AUD$53,900

2016/2017 – AUD$53,900


Please note that when you provide the income tax assessment notice you must remove or obscure the Tax File Number from the notice. this can be done by blocking out or covering the TFM with masking tape or a pen or piece of paper prior to scanning the document.

  • Meeting health, character and security checks
  • Lodge the application and pay the relevant lodgement fee

The application can also include the members of your family unit being your partner and children. These members of there family unit will also need to meet health, character and security check.

After the grant of a Permanent residency visa, new Zealand Citizens will have the option to apply for Australian Citizenship after 12 months.

Please note that if you arrived to Australia prior to 26/02/2001, you may already be considered a Permanent resident for the purpose of applying for Australian Citizenship.


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