An Overview of How to Apply for Australian Citizenship in Melbourne

Embarking on the path to Australian citizenship is a significant milestone for many immigrants. It signifies the culmination of dreams and aspirations, drawing individuals from various corners of the world to this country. The country, its culture and the wealth of opportunities opens a way for migrants to build a new life.

However, the intricacies of the application process and the exhaustive documentation often pose significant challenges. This is precisely where the expertise of professional migration agents becomes invaluable. Connect with Australia Migration Services is a MARA-registered visa consultancy with experienced visa agents to assist you in the process of applying for Australian citizenship.

Eligibility to Obtain Australian Citizenship

The path to citizenship is governed by specific eligibility criteria designed to ensure that those who become citizens align with the values and standards of the nation. These are the various requirements for Australian citizenship:

  • Must be 18 years of age or above but below 60 years

  • Needs to be a permanent resident visa holder or an eligible New Zealand citizen

  • Should meet the residence requirement

  • Must meet health and character requirements

  • Need to have basic knowledge of English

  • Must not be any visa breaches in the applicant’s history

  • Should have an understanding of Australian values

  • Must have the intention to reside in Australia

  • Must obtain 65 or more points in the evaluation matrix

Rights of an Australian Citizen

Becoming a citizen of Australia will provide you with several benefits and entitlements. This ensures equal treatment and protection for all citizens. Here’s a concise overview:

  • Can apply for an Australian passport

  • Ensures equal rights for all citizens, regardless of gender, race, or background

  • Can apply for any job with the Australian government

  • Possible to become a part of the Australian defence forces

  • Can seek help from the Australian consulate when abroad

  • Can vote in the Australian federal, state or territory elections, and constitutional referendums

  • Eligible to stand in the Australian parliament elections (not for those under 18 years or dual citizens)

  • Can sponsor others for Australian visas or PR

  • Can enter or exit Australia multiple times

Responsibilities of an Australian Citizen

Becoming an Australian citizen bestows both responsibilities and privileges upon individuals. Here’s a breakdown of what it means to be an Australian citizen:

  • Must abide by all Australian laws

  • Conduct should be as per the Australian values

  • Must vote in the federal, state or territory elections, and constitutional referendums

  • Must take part in Australia’s defence if required

  • Must serve on the jury if called upon to do so

  • Need to sign the Australian values system

Documents Required to Apply for Australian Citizenship

When applying for Australian citizenship, it’s crucial to provide evidence that you meet the necessary requirements. There are several documents that you need to apply for Australian Citizenship. These are:

  • Original police certificates

  • Scanned copies of the original documents if applying online

  • Certified copies of documents if applying with a paper application

Also, you must fulfil the following conditions while submitting these documents

  • Include as much information that can help the department decide on your application

  • Each document should be submitted only once, even if you are using it to show more than one thing

  • All requested documents should be lodged with your application

If you have an Australian parent and you were born overseas, you will need:

  • Identity documents
  • Documents displaying good character
  • Supporting documents
  • Documents proving your parent’s Australian citizenship
  • Documents about parent’s residency in Australia
  • Recent photograph(less than 6 months old)

Pathways to Becoming an Australian Citizen

Becoming an Australian citizen offers numerous pathways, catering to diverse circumstances. There are three pathways to becoming an Australian citizen. These are:

  • Birth: This is applicable if you were born in Australia or either of your parents is an Australian citizen, you become entitled to Australian citizenship.

  • Descent: Australian citizenship will be granted if either or both of your parents are Australian citizens but you were born in a foreign country.

  • Conferred: This category is for permanent residents, including New Zealand citizens (subclass 444), aged 18-59, children aged 16 or 17, and younger children applying with a parent. Also applicable to certain migrants and refugees.

Other Pathways:

  • Children (15 Years or Younger) Applying Independently: Permanent residents aged 15 years or under applying for citizenship on their own can go for this category.

  • Born to Former Australian Citizens: This pertains to children of former Australian citizens whose parents lost Australian citizenship under specific circumstances.

  • Child Adopted under Adoption Convention/Bilateral Agreement: For children born overseas and adopted by an Australian citizen outside Australia through international adoption arrangements under the Hague Adoption Convention or a bilateral agreement, this could be a pathway.

  • Person Born in Papua: This is applicable for individuals born in Papua before its independence from Australia in 1975 and whose parent was born in Australia as it is now known.

  • Person with Incapacity or Impairment: This is intended for individuals facing incapacity or impairment preventing them from sitting the Australian citizenship test.

  • Australian Citizens Seeking Restoration: For individuals who used to be Australian citizens and are seeking to regain their citizenship status, they can go for this pathway.

  • Born in Australia and Stateless: It includes individuals born in Australia who are stateless, ensuring they can acquire Australian citizenship.

Process to Apply for Australian Citizenship

To apply and become an Australian citizen is a step-by-step process. Here is how it works:

  • Application for Australian Citizenship: Consult an experienced visa agent to discuss your case. An immigration agent will check for your eligibility and help you file your application with all the required documents.

  • Prepare Your Documents: Gather all necessary documents to support your application, ensuring you meet the requirements.

  • Apply Online or via Paper Application: Apply and pay online for a quicker process. Submit all required documents through ImmiAccount. Use Form 1300t for general eligibility (aged 18-59) or Form 1290 for specific situations. Pre-pay your fee online and mail the form with certified document copies to the specified address.

  • Attend Your Appointment: Most applicants aged 18 – 59 will have an interview and citizenship test. Some might only need an interview. An appointment letter detailing the interview and test will be sent. The duration from application to appointment varies but can take several months.

    During your citizenship test, you will be questioned about your understanding of the responsibilities of an Australian citizen and life in the country. The questions are based on the book ‘Australian Citizenship: Our Common Bond’ that you can study at length before you appear for the appointment.

  • Wait for Our Decision: Provide any additional documents requested and update us on any changes in your circumstances. You will receive a written notification of the decision.

  • Citizenship Ceremony: After you have cleared the Australian citizenship test, you will be invited to the citizenship ceremony. This is usually three months after the clearing of the test. However, the dates may vary as per your local council. At the citizenship ceremony, you take the citizenship pledge and become an Australian citizen.

Australian Citizenship Application Processing Times

The processing time for your Australian Citizenship application depends on a lot of factors such as:

  1. Number of applications received by the Department of Home Affairs
  2. Completeness of your application
  3. Supporting documents
  4. Your response to any request for additional information
  5. Payment of correct application fees

Check out the average time taken for the processing the application:

Type of Australian Citizenship Time period covered 25% of applications 50% of applications 75% of applications 90% of applications
Conferral Date of application to decision 50 Days 3 months 6 months 10 months
Conferral Date of approval for the ceremony 65 Days 4 months 5 months 6 months
Conferral Date of application to the ceremony 6 months 8 months 11 months 14 months
Descent Date of application to decision 50 days 57 days 78 days 4 months

Please note that these are indicative times only and the actual time may vary for your application. Be sure to consult our visa agent for details on this.

Australian Citizenship Ceremony Wait Times

The waiting time for the Australian citizenship ceremony depends on your local council. This is as per your residential address. You cannot change or choose when or where you want to attend the ceremony. A successful applicant is usually informed 4 weeks before the ceremony. You can check the website of the Department of Home Affairs for council-wise ceremony time details.

Find the Best Migration Consultant in Melbourne for Australian Citizenship

If you are looking for a reliable migration consultant in Melbourne, you are in the right place. Over the years, Connect with Australia has helped hundr