The New Pathway To Permanent Residence For New Zealanders

The New Pathway To Permanent Residence For New Zealanders

For New Zealand citizens who are residing in Australia, they do have an option for an additional pathway available to them to gain permanent residence from 1 July 2017. This is to acknowledge the special bilateral relationship between Australia and New Zealand.

The additional pathway is available via the Skilled Independent (subclass189) visa which will have two streams: Skilled Independent 189 (Points-tested) stream and Skilled Independent 189 (New Zealand) stream.

The New Zealand stream is for SCV holders who were usually resident in Australia on or before 19 February 2016 and who, at the time of lodging an application, have resided in Australia for at least five years. You will need to show that you were usually resident. Meaning physically present and you do have an intention to reside in Australia.

Short visit outside Australia either for holiday or business trip might not be enough. But if you were temporarily outside Australia on 19 February but were usually resident before that time, you might be eligible. Such visits can be considered as long it can be proven that there is an intention to reside in Australia and has spent a substantial amount of time in Australia.

Abovementioned arrangements will give many New Zealand citizens permanent residence status. And of course, criteria should be met:

  • contributing to Australia, demonstrated through income tax returns which show taxable income at least equivalent to the Temporary Skilled Migration Income Threshold (TSMIT) for the qualifying period; and

*Need to provide ATO Notices of Assessment showing that you have earned annual taxable income at least equivalent to TSMIT (Temporary Skilled Migration Income Threshold) for the last 5 financial years.

*TSMIT currently is at $53,900. Used to be $51,000 from 01 July 2012 to 30 June 2013.

  • meeting mandatory health, character and security checks.

For other areas to consider, like age requirement, the New Zealand stream of the 189 visa has no age limit. You can also include spouses and dependent children in the application even if they are not New Zealand citizens.

New Zealand citizens who are granted this visa will be eligible to apply for Australian citizenship after a period of 12 months (in addition to the five years as an eligible New Zealand SCV holder). Please be noted that, if you arrived in Australia prior to 26 February 2001, you may already be considered a permanent resident for the purpose of applying for Australian citizenship.

Are you eligible? We can do a quick for you. Contact us for free consultation at 07 3191 2407. Skype and email:

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