If you have immigrated to Australia, then you can qualify for Australian citizenship if:
- You have lived in Australia as a permanent resident for at least 2 of the last 5 years; &
- You have lived in Australia as a permanent resident for at least 12 of the last 24 months. That is, you can qualify for Australian citizenship if you migrate to Australia and live in Australia continuously for 2 years. You must also be aged over 18, be of good character and understand your obligations as an Australian citizen.
Note that you do not automatically qualify for Australian citizenship in this way, you must make an application for citizenship.
Birth in Australia : If you were born in Australia, then you would automatically be an Australian citizen if:
- You were born in Australia prior to 20 August 1986; OR
- You were born in Australia after 20 August 1986, and one of your parents held Australian citizenship or an Australian permanent residence visa at the time of birth; OR
- You were born in Australia after 20 August 1986, neither of your parents held Australian citizenship or an Australian permanent residence visa, but you have spent the majority of your life in Australia prior to your 10th birthday. In this case, you automatically become an Australian citizen on your 10th birthday.
Born Overseas to an Australian Citizen Parent : If you were born overseas and one of your parents held Australian citizenship at your date of birth, then you are eligible to be registered as an Australian citizen. The registration must be done at an Australian consulate or embassy prior to your 18th birthday.
If you were not registered as an Australian citizen before your 18th birthday, then you can still be registered as an Australian citizen if:
- You have been issued with an Australian passport; OR
- Your name has appeared on an Australian electoral roll; OR
- An application for registration was made, but it was lost by the Australian consulate or embassy; OR
- You can show that you were not aware of the requirement for registration.
Residence in Australia prior to 26 January 1949. If you were a British subject resident in Australia or New Guinea for the 5 years prior to the 26th of January 1949, you would have become an Australian citizen automatically on this date.
Dual Citizenship : Australia now allows dual citizenship. That means that an Australian citizen can take up citzenship of another country without losing their Australian citizenship. If, on the other hand, you become an Australian citizen, it is up to the law of your country of citizenship whether you can keep your existing citizenship.