Australian Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull has announced changes to Australia’s citizenship laws. Prospective Australian citizens will now face a tougher citizenship test and increased English language and permanent residency requirements.
The current citizenship test will be altered in order to assess migrant’s commitment to Australia and their attitudes towards religious freedom, violence and equality. The test will also have a limit of three attempts and an automatic fail for applicants who cheat during the test. The test continues to assess whether applicants have a sufficient level of knowledge of Australia and the responsibilities and privileges of citizenship.
Applicants will now be required to pass an English language test equivalent to an IELTS level 6 or a “competent” English language proficiency level. Mr Turnbull stated that “the single best thing any person coming to this country can do is learn English and that’s why Peter’s department put such a big effort into it.”
Turnbull is also increasing the residency requirement duration. In order to be eligible, applicants must now be a permanent resident for at least 4 years prior to applying for citizenship. Previously, the residency requirement was only 12 months.
If you have any questions or would like to find out more about the new Australian citizenship laws, call Active Migration on +61 8 9447 2226.