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Other Visas

Special Category Visa – subclass 444

In order to enter Australia, inhabitants of New Zealand are automatically issued a tourist visa. Citizens of both countries can travel visa-free between Australia and New Zealand as part of an existing arrangement.

Note that if you are not a New Zealand citizen but are the child or partner of a New Zealand citizen, you are not eligible for a subclass 444 visa but may be eligible for a New Zealand Citizen Family Relationship visa (subclass 461).

The Application Process

You are exempt from submitting a subclass 444 visa application. If you seem qualified for an Australian visa, you’ll get one when you land in the country.

Eligibility criteria for subclass 444 visa

New Zealand citizenship, a willingness to undergo treatment for tuberculosis, and meeting certain moral standards are required to apply.

  1. You have been given a prison term of over a year’s duration.
  2. Since you committed this offence while mentally incompetent, you have been judged guilty.
  3. You were found not guilty of a crime due to insanity.
  4. You were expelled or expelled from any nation.

Besides Australia, you’ve been blacklisted from entering the following countries:

  1. produced a passport that didn’t exist
  2. Were justifiably denied admission due to the fact that you weren’t a tourist but rather a potential threat to the country’s security
  3. You neglected to provide authorities with a passport when doing so was required.

There may be some exemptions and concessions.

Are you an “eligible New Zealand citizen”?

A person who fits this description is a resident of New Zealand and who has the following characteristics:

  1. Has been in Australia on a subclass 444 visa for at least one year between 26 February 1999 and 26 February 2001; or
  2. Has been in Australia on a subclass 444 visa for at least one year on 26 February 2001; or
  3. who has been verified as a qualified citizen of New Zealand by Centrelink (for example, if they could show they were on their way to settle in Australia before 26 February 2001 but were not in Australia on that day specifically).

It’s the same for qualified New Zealand citizens as it is for Australian permanent residents: they can sponsor their loved ones to move to Australia permanently.

Common problems for applicants

This visa is not a path to permanent residency in Australia, but it does provide indefinite stay and employment and study privileges. If you are not a permanent resident, you cannot apply for citizenship.

Unless you are an Eligible New Zealand Citizen, you cannot sponsor your family members for permanent residency (as outlined above)

Your visa will expire and you will need to apply for a new one in order to re-enter Australia.

Subclass 444 visa application FAQ

This visa can be applied for from within or outside of Australia. If you are travelling to Australia, you can get this visa at the airport.

This visa can be applied for from within or outside of Australia.

This visa does not allow dependents to travel with the applicant. A subclass 461 visa sponsorship is required for non-New Zealand citizen family members.

With this visa, you don’t have to worry about meeting the regular health requirements.

This is a visitor visa that will allow you to stay in Australia indefinitely.

Visa Details

Visa Subclass:
Length of stay:
From grant (usually on arrival in Australia) until you depart Australia.
From AUD 0


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