What is an eligible New Zealand citizen?

You are an Eligible New Zealand Citizen if you are a New Zealand citizen who at the time of your last entry to Australia would have met your health and character checks and:

  • held a Subclass 444 (Special Category) visa on 26 February 2001
  • held a Subclass 444 visa that was in force for at least one year in the two years before 26 February 2001, or
  • has a certificate, issued under the Social Security Act 1991, that states the citizen, for the purposes of the Social Security Act, was residing in Australia on a particular date (Centrelink stopped accepting applications for these certificates on 26 February 2004).

An eligible New Zealand citizen can:

  • sponsor family members for an Australian permanent visa
  • access certain social security payments
  • obtain Australian citizenship.