The Steps to Become an Australian Citizen
In order to become an Australian Citizen, you first have to apply for citizenship. There are a few different requirements you have to meet in order to begin the application process.
First of all, you have to be a permanent resident. You also have to meet the requirements for residency, be of upstanding character in the eyes of the government and have plans to live in Australia or maintain close ties with it.
The Required Documents
A few different kinds of documents have to be submitted for citizenship. These are documents pertaining to your identity, documents that pertain to your character and documents that support your request.
Identity documents consist of things like a birth certificate, ID card, proof of address, photo identification and the such. If you have changed your name, you have to show proof of that change.
Anyone who has lived outside of Australia after the age of 18 and after they received their permanent visa will need to obtain a penal clearance certificate. This certificate must come from all the countries you stayed at for more than 90 days.
Supporting documents will have to show any concession and exceptions that apply as well as any special requirements for residency. Your applications should also include any evidence you have of New Zealand or British residence and of any children you may have.
When Application for Citizenship Can Begin
Before you can file an application, you have to have been in Australia for at least four years. You have to have been a permanent resident for at least the last 12 months as well. During this four-year period, there will be a limit as to how long you can have been outside Australia, if you want your application to be considered.
Once you have filed the application, you will be told how probable your chances are. You will also be given an appointment with the Department of Immigration and Border Protection. At that point, you will be interviewed or required to take the citizenship test. All the original paperwork you have for the application will need to be brought to this appointment.
What Is Involved in the Citizenship Test?
For most people, it will be necessary to take the citizenship test. This ensures that you can understand English on a basic level and that you know the country you will be becoming a citizen of. It also ensures that you understand your civic responsibilities and the citizenship privileges that you will enjoy. You will also be assessed on your understanding of your reason for application.
There are practice tests available that you can take to prepare for the citizenship test.
The Last Step
Once your application is approved, you will receive an invitation to a ceremony celebrating your citizenship. This only applies to people who are over 16 and who are not incapacitated in some way. You will make a pledge at the ceremony, which has to be done within 12 months of application approval. Once you have taken the pledge, you will be granted Australian citizenship.
If you aren’t sure if you will meet the basic requirements for citizenship, if you require assistance in filling out a visa application or you need help with any other immigration or citizenship problem, then please let our expert immigration team assist you.