Key terms: Citizenship – Australia – Australian Citizenship Legislation Amendment (Strengthening the Requirements for Australian Citizenship and Other Measures) Bill 2017 (the Bill) – High Court citizenship ruling – Dual Citizenship – Australia Citizenship requirements – Australia MPs – Banarby Joyce – Fiona Nash – Malcolm Roberts – Larissa Waters – Scott Ludlam – Nick Xenophon – Matthew Canavan
On 20 April 2017 the Australian Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) announced that changes are being introduced to the Australian citizenship requirements. The changes include:
- Increased residency requirements (from one year to four)
- Meeting an English requirement
The changes are meant to be in effect once the Australian Citizenship Legislation Amendment (Strengthening the Requirements for Australian Citizenship and Other Measures) Bill 2017 (the Bill) gets passed in Parliament. Unfortunately applications yet to be decided were also put on hold until the Bill can be passed.
On 18 October 2017, the Bill was struck down and thus the new requirements will not be implemented, at least for the time being. Applications are now being assessed under existing requirements. From the DIBP website:
If you applied before, on or after 20 April 2017
If you applied for Australian citizenship before, on or after 20 April 2017, your application will be assessed against the eligibility criteria in place when you applied. If your application has not yet been finalised, we will write to you when it reaches the next stage of processing, or if we require any further information or documents.
At this time the DIBP has mentioned that new requirements are being planned for implementation in July 2018. As such there has been a huge surge of citizenship applications since 18 October 2017. This is expected to lengthen citizenship processing times, as the assessment teams will have to start assessing the applications put on hold since 20 April 2017, and also the new applications being submitted. It is estimated that there are currently 118,000 citizenship applications in the processing pipeline.
Dual citizenships and Australian politics
Earlier today the Australian High Court has passed a ruling under section 44 of the Australian Constitution, disqualifying several elected politicians from serving in the Australian Parliament. Among the Members of Parliament (MPs) affected:
- Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce
- Nationals deputy leader Fiona Nash
- One Nation’s Malcom Roberts
- former Greens senators Larissa Waters
- former Greens senators Scott Ludlam
Independent senator Nick Xenophon and Nationals MP Matthew Canavan were ruled to be eligible for Parliament.
This is an ongoing development in the topic of Australian citizenship, for Australia migrants and politicians.
This information is accurate on 27 October 2017.
Do you need help with an Australian visa or Citizenship application?
At Work Visa Lawyers we are experienced in assisting applicants in all matters relating to Australian visa applications. Our areas of expertise include Skilled Migration visas, Business Skills Migration visas, Employer Sponsored Work Visas, Partner and other Family Migration visas as well as the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) Review, Judicial Review and Ministerial Intervention.
We are also experienced in Australian citizenship applications, ranging from the usual applications to applications with character or other issues.
If you require further information regarding your Australia visa options you can contact us through:
(08) 8351 9956 or +61 8 8351 9956
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