Citizenship Update

Following the removal of the Australian Citizenship Legislation Amendment Bill 2017, the Minister plans to reintroduce an amended version of the Bill, with a proposed introduction date of 1 July 2018.

The English language test will be amended to a ‘modest’ level of English.

Applications made before 1 July 2018 (subject to the passage of legislation), will be assessed against the current eligibility criteria.

Applications made on or after 1 July 2018 (subject to the passage of legislation), will be assessed against the new eligibility criteria.

1 July 2018 proposed amendments, subject to the passing of legislation, include:

  • increasing the general residence requirement, which means applicants for Australian citizenship will  need to have a minimum of four years permanent residence immediately prior to their application for citizenship with no more than one year spent outside Australia during that period.
  • completing a separate English language test, where applicants will need to demonstrate English  language listening, speaking, reading and writing skills at the modest level before applying for  citizenship by conferral.
  • strengthening the Australian values statement to include reference to allegiance to Australia and requiring applicants to undertake to integrate into and contribute to the Australian community.
  • strengthening the test for Australian citizenship through the addition of new test questions about Australian values and the privileges and responsibilities of Australian citizenship.
  • a requirement for applicants to demonstrate their integration into the Australian community.
  • strengthening the pledge to refer to allegiance to Australia, and extending the requirement to make the pledge to applicants aged 16 years and over for all streams of citizenship by application, including citizenship by descent, adoption and resumption.

Please contact us if you believe you meet the present criteria in order to apply ASAP before the new changes become law.