Easy pathway to Australian citizenship in jeopardy for Kiwis
New Zealanders who moved to Australia prior to 2001 are being encouraged to apply for citizenship before it’s too late.
A law allowing Kiwis easier access to Australian citizenship will expire in October this year – and might not be afforded an extension.
The stipulation lets New Zealanders who were residents in Australia on or before 26 February, 2001 to apply for citizenship as permanent residents.
Those who arrived after the date have to initially apply for permanent residency – and then citizenship, which places them in competition with skilled workers from other countries.
“The crux of it is that if you are already deemed to be a permanent resident it is much easier to become a citizen,” said immigration lawyer Jackson Taylor.
Protecting Special Category Visa Holders Facebook page administrator Morgan Blake added: “I think it’s probably 95 percent likely that it will be extended. But immigration in today’s environment is very hard to predict.
“If they’ve got access now I would encourage everyone to take it now. You just never know in this environment.
“The thing is Kiwis have a natural instinct to wonder what will happen, because there’s been a 17-year history of reducing rights, and also not explaining what they are going to do.”