Can you apply for the New Zealand 189 visa?

A new permanent visa, the Skilled Independent 189 (New Zealand) Stream became available from 1 July 2017 for some non-protected Special Category Visa-holders (SCV).

To be eligible for the new visa, the primary applicant must:

  • be a non-protected Special Category Visa-holder
  • have started residing in Australia on or before 19 February 2016
  • have resided in Australia for the last five years immediately prior to applying
  • have earned at least the taxable income threshold in each of the last five financial years or qualify for an income exemption
  • meet the standard healthcharacter and security checks.


Not all New Zealanders will be eligible to apply, including students, retirees, carers of children and some people unable to work due to an injury. Being made redundant, becoming unemployed, salary sacrificing and negative gearing are not grounds for an income exemption.

If the primary applicant does not meet the income threshold/income exemption criteria they cannot apply.

Find out more about the Skilled Independent 189 (New Zealand) Stream.


Your options for citizenship

Applying for citizenship

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