Book Now
Book Now

Special Category (subclass 444) Visas

When a New Zealand citizen enters Australia on a valid New Zealand passport, they will automatically be granted a Special Category (subclass 444) Visa at the airport, upon arrival in Australia, provided that they do not have any character or health concerns for non-citizens or have a no further stay visa condition on a previous visa.

A Special Category (subclass 444) Visa allows New Zealand citizens to visit, study, stay and work in Australia indefinitely. However, these visa holders are required to continue to meet the relevant character requirements while in Australia in addition to remaining a New Zealand citizen.

However, it is important to note that a Special Category (subclass 444) Visa is not a permanent residency visa, and does not necessarily provide a direct pathway to Australian citizenship.

While in Australia on a Special Category (subclass 444) Visa, an individual may be entitled to the following:

  • Medicare
  • family assistance payments
  • rest assistance
  • age pension
  • disability pension or carer pension
  • student loans
orphan relative visa

Please note however, a Protected Special Category (subclass 444) Visa holder may be entitled to additional benefits to the above.

If you are a New Zealand citizen and wish to apply for Australian permanent residency, or otherwise want to determine your most suitable pathway to Australian citizenship, there may be various options available, dependant on your particular circumstances and skills. For example, the Skilled Independent (subclass 189) Visa specifically has a stream for New Zealand citizens who meet the appropriate requirements.

Alternatively, eligible New Zealand citizens are entitled to apply for Australian citizenship without obtaining permanent residency first. An eligible New Zealand citizen in this instance is an individual who arrived in Australia with a New Zealand passport and they were here on 26 February 2001, were here for 12 months in the two years prior to 26 February 2001 or have been assessed as a Protected Special Category Visa holder and have been issued with a Centrelink certificate clarifying that you were living in Australia at the aforementioned time. For further information regarding Australian citizenship, please click here.

For further information regarding various visas, please feel free to explore the information on the All Access Migration Website, or alternatively please do not hesitate to contact our office to discuss what options may be most suitable for yourself.

Enquire about Special Category (subclass 444) Visas

Brisbane Office

1300 245 756

50 McDougall Street,
Milton, Brisbane, QLD, 4064

Gold Coast Office

1300 245 756

Levels 5 & 9, Corporate Centre One,
2 Corporate Court,
Bundall, QLD, 4217

Sydney Office

1300 245 756

Level 6,
15 Castlereagh Street,
Sydney, NSW, 2000


Latest Articles and Updates

Student Visa

Changes Outlined in New Migration Strategy Target Australia's Student and Graduate Visa Program

In December 2023, the Australian Government released their Migration Strategy. In particular, the Government has outlined their intention to make significant changes to the Student and Graduate Visa programs, focusing on “strengthening the integrity and quality of international education”. To ensure you protect your migration position, contact our experienced team to guide you through these changes.

Temporary Skill Shortage Visas

Navigating The Australian Work Landscape: Temporary Skill Shortage Visas Explained

Unlock the potential of Australia's job market with the Temporary Skill Shortage Visa - Subclass 482. Introduced in 2018, the TSS visa bridges Australia's skill gap, providing a pathway for skilled professionals to realise their career aspirations. It addresses short- and medium-term needs with three distinct streams catering to varying employment durations. However, the journey requires navigating specific requirements, from employer sponsorships to applicant criteria. Fortunately, All Access Migration team offers expert guidance. Whether you're an employer or a potential employee, delve into the intricacies of this visa with us and turn your Australian work dreams into reality.

Regional Visa

Navigating The Path To Regional Visas: Your Gateway To A Life In Regional Australia

Explore the world of regional visas, including the Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) Visa (Subclass 491) and Skilled Employer Sponsored Regional (Provisional) Visa (Subclass 494). Discover a life rich with opportunities in the heart of regional Australia! Whether you're drawn to its serene landscapes or thriving communities, there's a path tailored for you. With distinct visa options offering a chance to live, work, and study amidst Australia's hidden gems, with an employer, or state to sponsor you, the dream is closer than you think. Under the expert guidance of All Access Migration, the visa options become clear and achievable.


Designated Area Migration Agreement (DAMA): Paving The Way For Skilled Workers And Australian Businesses

Designated Area Migration Agreements (DAMAs) significantly evolved Australia's skilled migration framework, offering a dynamic two-tiered system tailored to regional needs. Diverging from traditional migration pathways, DAMAs permit regions to source a broader range of overseas talent. A foundational five-year "head agreement" with regional representatives is at the helm. This paves the way for tier two: individual labour agreements with employers, aligning with the head agreement's stipulations. While 12 DAMAs currently operate, each mirrors its region's unique necessities. While the process might seem intricate, advisors like All Access Migration ensure a streamlined experience for businesses eager to tap into this option.

Healthcare Worker

Queensland Government's Workforce Attraction Scheme Recognises Interstate and International Healthcare Heroes

Discover Queensland Government's groundbreaking initiative revolutionising healthcare by attracting skilled workforce. Addressing critical shortages, the government offers appealing incentives to healthcare workers across Australia and abroad. Count on All Access Migration for seamless support during relocation and immigration process. Enjoy benefits of up to $20,000 for joining Queensland Health and up to $70,000 for rural doctors. These incentives transform healthcare, ensuring top-notch services for all Queensland residents.


Update: The Australian Government Announces Temporary Skilled Migration Income Threshold Increase

As a result of an independent review, the Australian government has decided to raise the Temporary Skilled Migration Income Threshold (TSMIT) from $53,900 to $70,000 effective from 1 July 2023. This alteration will impact companies that sponsor foreign workers under skilled migration programs, as they must comply with the minimum salary requirement to guarantee that migrant workers receive equitable pay. The government's choice reflects their dedication to fairness within the skilled migration system.

New Zealanders

Direct Pathway to Australian Citizenship for New Zealanders

The Australian Government has introduced a direct pathway to Australian citizenship for eligible New Zealand citizens living in Australia, which marks a significant change in the migration policy between the two nations. This move is expected to make access to Australian citizenship much more manageable for New Zealanders living in Australia, and it is set to take effect from 1 July 2023. The article emphasises the significance of this policy shift and its impact on the lives of New Zealanders living in Australia.

TPD Claim

Overhaul Needed For Skilled Migration System To Address Labour Shortages

Australia’s skilled migration system is facing a significant challenge for addressing the country's skill shortage and labour crisis. However, the mandatory job advertisement requirement for employers recruiting skilled migrants has hindered the system's success, as recently pointed out by a review conducted by Martin Parkinson, Joanna Howe, and John Azarias. Removing this requirement could significantly improve the system's efficiency and effectiveness. Furthermore, the visa system's outdated policies have led to the exploitation of temporary migrants by unscrupulous employers, creating a vulnerable group that needs protection.