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New Zealand citizens to be given an easy pathway to PR

On Friday the 19th February, it was announced by the DIBP that New Zealand citizens residing in Australia for at least 5 years and earning a decent income will have a new and easy pathway to become Australian Permanent residents. This new visa is set to begin on the 1st July 2016.

This is seen as a major concession to New Zealanders (who arrived in Australia after 26th February 2001) who have struggle to find a pathway to Australian Citizenship.

New Zealand citizens have had access to Australia through the New Zealand Special Category visa (SCV) which enables them to work and live here indefinitely but it does not given them access to social security such as unemployment or pension benefits. This new pathway will be a lifeline to SCV visa holders who are looking to remain in Australia for their lifetime.

The major components of this visa for the main applicant is expected to be as follows;
* Residence in Australia for 5 years,
* During these five years demonstrate employment at a minimum income level of $53,900,
* Arrived in Australia after the 26th February 2001 but before the 20th February 2016,
* Pass health and character checks

It is also expected that there will be a special concession from the basic income requirement for what will be classed as "vulnerable individuals". These details are still to be finalised.

There will be also be a consideration for those main applicants who have taken maternity leave from work during the 5 year period.


The visa is expected to cost $3600 for the applicant, $1800 for their partner and $900 for children. In a ground breaking concession, applicants will only have to pay 20% of these costs upon application and the remainder before the visa is granted.

You can read the DIBP news release here.

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20% upfront and then the balance later??

Now we do appreciate our New Zealand brothers across the Tasman and we love their willingness to join us when it comes to a fight, but why should they be the only ones to be able 20% at time of lodging their PR visa and then pay the balance only when they are going to be successful?

Why do Australian citizen have to pay nearly $7000 up front when sponsoring their partners?  Why do Australia citizens have wait more than 12 months before a case officer is allocated to process their partners application? Why Australian citizens loose their $7000  then if their partners visa is unsuccessful but New Zealanders will only loose their 20%?

If I am the only one who sees this situation somewhat unbalanced, then please send in the hate mail and I will toss them in the trash as usual. However all those Australian citizens out their who have paid their 7K in advance and receive the poor service the DIBP is still offering, please contact Mr. Dutton (your Minister) directly.