If you are a New Zealand Citizen, it is possibly the easiest way to get your Permanent Residency if you meet the requirements
On 19 February 2016, to acknowledge the special relationship between Australia and New Zealand , the Australian Government announced an additional pathway to permanent residency .
For New Zealand citizens living in Australia for at-least 5 years and have shown a continuous commitment and contribution to the Australian society. On 1 July 2017, the “additional pathway" has become a stream in the Skilled Independent(Subclass189) in itself.
The visa ia called as Subclass(444) visa or New Zealand Special category visa. This is for New Zealand citizens who have been resident in Australia on or before the 19 February 2016 and those who at the time of their final visa lodgment have physically stayed in Australia for a minimum of 5 years.
They will achieve Permanent Residency status, if they meet certain criteria, including:
1-Steady contribution to Australia, through income tax returns which show taxable income equivalent to the Temporary Skilled Migration Income Threshold(TSMIT) for the qualifying period.
2-Metting mandatory health, character and security checks
3-NZ citizens who are granted permanent residency need to wait 12 months to apply for Citizenship(on the top of having 5 years as an eligible NZ Special Category Visa holder.
Arrival prior to 26 Feb 2001
If you have arrived before this date you may already be considered a permanent resident for the purpose of applying for Australia Citizenship.
New Zealand stream requirements
To be eligible for this stream you need to have the following
1-Hold Special category(Subclass444) visa
2-Residing in Australia for at-least 5 years prior to application. Residence should have commenced before 19 February 2016.
3-Income threshold according to TSMIT($53,900) which is taxable income for each year in the 5 years prior to lodging application.
4-Meet health, character, national police check requirements
Exemptions to income test
1-Certain exemptions are available to income test requirements.
2-If the Australian authority prevents you from leaving Australia to return to New Zealand. Situations where the Family court of Australia assigned primary care of a child to New Zealand citizen from removing the child from Australia.
3-Compensation for an injury and is unable to continue earning at the income threshold requirement.
If you are a NZ citizen and would like to know the options available to you for permanent residency. Feel free to contact us.