Citizenship Act 1977

  • This version was reprinted on 31 October 2014 to make a correction to the definition of employee in section 2(1) under section 25(1)(i) of the Legislation Act 2012.

Reprint
as at 1 July 2013

Coat of Arms of New Zealand

Citizenship Act 1977

Public Act1977 No 61
Date of assent1 December 1977
Commencementsee section 1(2)

Note

Changes authorised by section 17C of the Acts and Regulations Publication Act 1989 have been made in this reprint.

A general outline of these changes is set out in the notes at the end of this reprint, together with other explanatory material about this reprint.

This Act is administered by the Department of Internal Affairs.


Contents

Title

1 Short Title and commencement

2 Interpretation

3 Special provisions relating to parentage

4 Administration of Act

4A Delegation of powers by Secretary

5 Act binds Crown

Part 1
New Zealand citizenship

Acquisition of citizenship

6 Citizenship by birth

7 Citizenship by descent

8 Citizenship by grant

8A Grant of citizenship to spouse of New Zealand citizen [Repealed]

9 Grant of citizenship in special cases

9A Disqualifying convictions

9B Minister may rescind approval at any time up until applicant becomes citizen

10 Grant of citizenship as of right in certain cases

11 Minister may require oath or affirmation of allegiance to be taken

12 Certificate of New Zealand citizenship

Transitional provisions relating to citizenship

13 Existing rights of citizenship protected

14 Applications made under British Nationality and New Zealand Citizenship Act 1948 may be proceeded with under this Act

Loss of citizenship

15 Renunciation of citizenship

16 Deprivation of New Zealand citizenship in special cases

17 Deprivation of New Zealand citizenship in case of fraud, etc

18 Effect of order

19 Court review of grounds for depriving person of citizenship

20 Saving of obligations incurred before loss of citizenship, etc

Miscellaneous provisions relating to citizenship

21 Evidentiary certificates

22 Minister may delegate functions and powers to overseas representatives

Part 2
Miscellaneous provisions

23 Capacity as to property

24 General provisions as to certificates and other documents

25 Evidence

26 Discovery of documents held under this Act

26A Disclosure of citizenship information to certain specified agencies for certain purposes

26B Access to information for citizenship purposes

26C Access to information for purposes of Identity Information Confirmation Act 2012

27 Offences and penalties

28 Regulations

29 Application of Act to Cook Islands, Niue, and Tokelau

30 Repeals, consequential amendments, and revocation

Schedule 1
Oath of allegiance

Schedule 2
Enactments consequentially repealed

Schedule 3
Enactments consequentially amended

Schedule 4
Disclosure of information to specified agencies


An Act to make better provision with respect to the status of New Zealand citizenship, and to consolidate and amend the British Nationality and New Zealand Citizenship Act 1948

1 Short Title and commencement
  • (1) This Act may be cited as the Citizenship Act 1977.

    (2) This Act shall come into force on 1 January 1978.

2 Interpretation
  • (1) In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires,—

    alien means a person who does not have the status of a New Zealand citizen, a Commonwealth citizen (British subject), a British protected person, or an Irish citizen

    Armed Forces has the meaning given to it by section 2 of the Defence Act 1990

    Crown service under the New Zealand Government means the service of the Crown under the Government of New Zealand or under the Government of a New Zealand mandated territory or New Zealand trust territory, whether that service is in any part of Her Majesty's realms and territories or elsewhere; and includes employment in any of the State Services, as that term is defined in section 2 of the State Sector Act 1988

    employee has the meaning given to it by section 2 of the State Sector Act 1988, except that it includes—

    • (a) any chief executive

    • (b) [Repealed]

    Minister means the Minister of Internal Affairs

    New Zealand includes the Cook Islands, Niue, Tokelau, and the Ross Dependency

    New Zealand overseas representative means a diplomatic or consular representative for New Zealand or a representative of the Government of New Zealand in any other country; and includes a High Commissioner for New Zealand in any other country

    prescribed means prescribed by regulations made under this Act or by the Minister

    protected State means a State or territory that is declared by Her Majesty by Order in Council to be a protected State for the purposes of the British Nationality Act 1948 (UK); and includes the New Hebrides and Canton Island

    protectorate means a State or territory that is declared by Her Majesty by Order in Council to be a protectorate for the purposes of the British Nationality Act 1948 (UK)

    Secretary means the Secretary for Internal Affairs.

    (2) References in this Act to a Commonwealth country include references to every territory for the international relations of which that country is responsible.

    (3) For the purposes of this Act,—

    • (a) a person born aboard a registered ship or aircraft shall be deemed to have been born in the place in which the ship or aircraft was registered:

    • (b) a person born aboard an unregistered ship or aircraft of the Government of a country shall be deemed to have been born in that country:

    • (c) a person shall be deemed to be of full capacity if he is not of unsound mind.

    Section 2(1) Armed Forces: inserted, on 18 November 1992, by section 2(2) of the Citizenship Amendment Act 1992 (1992 No 104).

    Section 2(1) Crown service under the New Zealand Government: amended, on 18 November 1992, by section 2(1) of the Citizenship Amendment Act 1992 (1992 No 104).

    Section 2(1) employee: inserted, on 18 November 1992, by section 2(2) of the Citizenship Amendment Act 1992 (1992 No 104).

    Section 2(1) employee paragraph (b): repealed, on 25 January 2005, by section 19(1) of the State Sector Amendment Act (No 2) 2004 (2004 No 114).

    Section 2(1) ordinarily resident: repealed, on 21 April 2005, by section 3 of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2005 (2005 No 43).

3 Special provisions relating to parentage
  • (1) For the purposes of this Act a person shall, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, be presumed to be the father of another person if—

    • (a) he is or was married to, or in a civil union or a de facto relationship with, that other person's mother at any time during the period commencing with that other person's conception and ending with that other person's birth; or

    • (b) his paternity of that other person has been established by 1 or more of the types of evidence specified by section 8 of the Status of Children Act 1969;—

    and (but without limiting subsection (2)) the term father, when used in this Act, shall be construed accordingly.

    (2) For the purposes of this Act a person shall be deemed to be the child of a New Zealand citizen if—

    • (a) he or she has been adopted by that citizen, in New Zealand, by an adoption order within the meaning of and made under the Adoption Act 1955; or

    • (aa) he or she has been legally adopted by that citizen, in Niue, Tokelau, or the Cook Islands, by an adoption order that has the same operation and effect as an adoption order made under the Adoption Act 1955; or

    • (b) he or she has been adopted by that citizen, outside New Zealand, by an adoption to which section 17 of the Adoption Act 1955 applies, and either—

      • (ii) at the time that adoption order was made he or she had not attained the age of 14 years; or

    • (ba) he or she has been adopted by that citizen, outside New Zealand, by an adoption order which has been certified by the competent authority of the Contracting State in which the adoption was made as being an adoption made in accordance with the Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption,—

    and in any such case,—

    • (c) the terms father, mother, and parent, when used in this Act, shall be construed accordingly:

    • (d) the person shall be deemed to have been born when and where the adoption order was made:

    provided that, on the discharge for any reason of the adoption order in accordance with section 20 of the Adoption Act 1955 (or in accordance with the law relating to the discharge of adoption orders in Niue, Tokelau, or the Cook Islands), the person shall cease to be deemed to be the child of that citizen.

    (2A) Nothing in the Adoption Act 1955 shall confer on a person who has been adopted by a New Zealand citizen in circumstances other than those specified in subsection (2) any greater right to New Zealand citizenship than that person would have had if that person had not been adopted.

    (2B) For the purposes of this Act, a person is deemed to be the child of a person entitled to be in New Zealand indefinitely if—

    • (a) he or she has been adopted in New Zealand on or after 1 January 2006, by an adoption order within the meaning of and made under the Adoption Act 1955, by a person who, at the time of the adoption, is entitled in terms of the Immigration Act 2009 to be in New Zealand indefinitely, or entitled to reside indefinitely in the Cook Islands, Niue, or Tokelau; or

    • (b) he or she has been legally adopted in the Cook Islands, Niue, or Tokelau on or after 1 January 2006, by an adoption order that has the same operation and effect as an adoption order made under the Adoption Act 1955, by a person who, at the time of the adoption, is entitled in terms of the Immigration Act 2009 to be in New Zealand indefinitely, or entitled to reside indefinitely in the Cook Islands, Niue, or Tokelau,—

      and, in any such case,—

    • (c) the terms father, mother, and parent, when used in this Act, are to be construed accordingly, and

    • (d) the person is deemed to have been born when and where the adoption order was made; but

    • (e) on the discharge for any reason of the adoption in accordance with section 20 of the Adoption Act 1955, or in accordance with the law relating to the discharge of adoption orders in the Cook Islands, Niue, or Tokelau, the person ceases to be deemed to be the child of the person entitled to be in New Zealand indefinitely.

    (3) References in this Act to the status or description of the father or mother of a person at the time of that person's birth shall, in relation to a person born after the death of his father or mother (as the case may require), be construed as referring to the status or description of the father or mother at the time of his or her death.

    (4) Where the relevant parent died before, and the person was born on or after, 1 January 1949, the status or description that would have been applicable to the parent had he or she died on or after 1 January 1949 shall be deemed to be the status or description applicable to him or her at the time of his or her death.

    (5) Where the relevant parent died before, and the birth occurs on or after, 1 January 1978, the status or description that would have been applicable to the parent had he or she died on or after that date shall be deemed to be the status or description applicable to him or her at the time of his or her death.

    (5A) In subsection 3(1)(a), de facto relationship has the same meaning as in section 2D of the Property (Relationships) Act 1976, except that—

    • (a) the reference to 18 years in subsection (1)(a) of that section is to be read as a reference to 16 years; and

    • (b) a person who has attained the age of 16 years but who is younger than 18 years may be treated as having a de facto relationship with another person only if—

      • (i) the person is under the guardianship of a court, and the court has on an application for the purpose consented to the relationship; or

      • (ii) in the case of a person not under the guardianship of a court, the person's parents and guardians have consented to the relationship.

    (6) In subsection (2)(ba), Contracting State has the same meaning as in the Adoption (Intercountry) Act 1997.

    Compare: 1948 No 15 ss 2(2), 26, 27; 1959 No 38 s 9; 1969 No 18 s 12(2)

    Section 3(1)(a): replaced, on 21 April 2005, by section 4(1) of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2005 (2005 No 43).

    Section 3(2): replaced, on 18 November 1992, by section 3 of the Citizenship Amendment Act 1992 (1992 No 104).

    Section 3(2)(aa): inserted, on 10 December 2001, by section 3(1) of the Citizenship Amendment Act (No 2) 2001 (2001 No 95).

    Section 3(2)(b)(ii): amended, on 1 January 1999, by section 29(1) of the Adoption (Intercountry) Act 1997 (1997 No 109).

    Section 3(2)(ba): inserted, on 1 January 1999, by section 29(1) of the Adoption (Intercountry) Act 1997 (1997 No 109).

    Section 3(2) proviso: amended, on 10 December 2001, by section 3(2) of the Citizenship Amendment Act (No 2) 2001 (2001 No 95).

    Section 3(2A): inserted, on 18 November 1992 by section 3 of the Citizenship Amendment Act 1992 (1992 No 104).

    Section 3(2B): inserted, on 21 April 2005, by section 4(2) of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2005 (2005 No 43).

    Section 3(2B)(a): amended, at 2 am on 29 November 2010, by section 406(1) of the Immigration Act 2009 (2009 No 51).

    Section 3(2B)(b): amended, at 2 am on 29 November 2010, by section 406(1) of the Immigration Act 2009 (2009 No 51).

    Section 3(5A): inserted, on 21 April 2005, by section 4(3) of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2005 (2005 No 43).

    Section 3(6): inserted, on 1 January 1999, by section 29(2) of the Adoption (Intercountry) Act 1997 (1997 No 109).

4 Administration of Act
  • Subject to the control of the Minister, the Secretary for Internal Affairs is responsible for the administration of this Act.

4A Delegation of powers by Secretary
  • (1) The Secretary may from time to time, by writing under the Secretary's hand, either generally or particularly, delegate to such officer or officers of the Department of Internal Affairs as the Secretary thinks fit all or any of the powers and functions exercisable by the Secretary under this Act or under any regulations made under this Act, other than the power of delegation conferred by this section.

    (2) Subject to any general or special directions given or conditions attached by the Secretary, the officer to whom any powers are delegated under this section may exercise those powers in the same manner and with the same effect as if they had been conferred on the officer directly by this section and not by delegation.

    (3) Every person purporting to act pursuant to any delegation under this section shall be presumed to be acting in accordance with its terms in the absence of evidence to the contrary.

    (4) Any delegation under this section may be made to a specified officer or to officers of a specified class, or may be made to the holder for the time being of a specified office or class of office.

    (5) Any delegation under this section shall be revocable at will, and no such delegation shall prevent the exercise of any power or function by the Secretary.

    (6) Any such delegation shall, until revoked, continue in force according to its tenor, notwithstanding the fact that the Secretary by whom it was made may have ceased to hold office, and shall continue to have effect as if made by the successor in office of that Secretary.

    Section 4A: inserted, on 17 December 1985, by section 2 of the Citizenship Amendment Act 1985 (1985 No 169).

5 Act binds Crown
  • This Act binds the Crown.

Part 1
New Zealand citizenship

Acquisition of citizenship

6 Citizenship by birth
  • (1) Subject to subsection (2), a person is a New Zealand citizen by birth if—

    • (a) the person was born in New Zealand on or after l January 1949 and before 1 January 2006; or

    • (b) the person was born in New Zealand on or after 1 January 2006, and, at the time of the person's birth, at least one of the person's parents was—

      • (i) a New Zealand citizen; or

      • (ii) entitled in terms of the Immigration Act 2009 to be in New Zealand indefinitely, or entitled to reside indefinitely in the Cook Islands, Niue, or Tokelau.

    (2) A person shall not be a New Zealand citizen by virtue of this section if, at the time of his birth,—

    • (b) his father and mother were enemy aliens and the birth occurred in a place then under occupation by the enemy.

    (3) Despite subsections (1) and (2),—

    • (a) every person born in New Zealand on or after 1 January 1978 is a New Zealand citizen by birth if the person would otherwise be stateless:

    • (b) a person is deemed to be a New Zealand citizen by birth if—

      • (i) the person, having recently been born, has been found abandoned in New Zealand; and

      • (ii) investigations have failed to establish the identity of at least one of the person's parents.

    (4) Notwithstanding section 7, a person born outside New Zealand shall be deemed to be a New Zealand citizen otherwise than by descent if that person's father or mother is then—

    • (a) a New Zealand citizen, or a New Zealand citizen by descent, pursuant to this Act; and

    • (b) either—

      • (ii) an employee in any part of the State services, or a member of the Armed Forces, on service overseas; or

      • (iia) a person working overseas for the public service of Niue, Tokelau, or the Cook Islands; or

    (5) Despite section 7, a person is a New Zealand citizen by birth if—

    • (a) the person is born in the Independent State of Samoa; and

    • (b) but for reasons of medical necessity requiring the mother to travel from Tokelau to the Independent State of Samoa to give birth to the person, the person would have been born in Tokelau; and

    • (c) at the time of the person's birth the person would have been a New Zealand citizen by birth under subsection (1), had the person been born on that date in Tokelau.

    (6) A person who is a New Zealand citizen by birth does not lose his or her New Zealand citizenship by reason of the person being adopted by a parent or parents who are neither—

    • (a) New Zealand citizens; nor

    • (b) persons entitled to reside indefinitely in New Zealand in terms of the Immigration Act 2009 or entitled to reside indefinitely in the Cook Islands, Niue, or Tokelau.

    Compare: 1948 No 15 s 6

    Section 6(1): replaced, on 21 April 2005, by section 5(1) of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2005 (2005 No 43).

    Section 6(1)(b)(ii): amended, at 2 am on 29 November 2010, by section 406(1) of the Immigration Act 2009 (2009 No 51).

    Section 6(3): replaced, on 21 April 2005, by section 5(2) of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2005 (2005 No 43).

    Section 6(4): replaced, on 18 November 1992, by section 4(1) of the Citizenship Amendment Act 1992 (1992 No 104).

    Section 6(4)(b)(i): amended, on 1 July 1993, pursuant to section 2(3) of the Foreign Affairs Amendment Act 1993 (1993 No 48).

    Section 6(4)(b)(iia): inserted, on 10 December 2001, by section 4 of the Citizenship Amendment Act (No 2) 2001 (2001 No 95).

    Section 6(4)(b)(iii): replaced, on 1 July 2003, by section 84 of the New Zealand Trade and Enterprise Act 2003 (2003 No 27).

    Sections 6(5): inserted, on 21 April 2005, by section 5(3) of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2005 (2005 No 43).

    Sections 6(6): inserted, on 21 April 2005, by section 5(3) of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2005 (2005 No 43).

    Section 6(6)(b): amended, at 2 am on 29 November 2010, by section 406(1) of the Immigration Act 2009 (2009 No 51).

7 Citizenship by descent
  • (1) Every person born outside New Zealand on or after 1 January 1978 is a New Zealand citizen by descent if, at the time of the person's birth,—

    • (a) his or her mother or father was a New Zealand citizen otherwise than by descent; or

    • (b) his or her mother or father was a New Zealand citizen by descent, and the person would otherwise be stateless.

    (2) A person who is a New Zealand citizen by virtue of subsection (1) may apply for his or her citizenship status to be registered in accordance with regulations made under this Act.

    (3) For the purposes of this section, the Secretary may issue a certificate stating a person's status under this section and, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, a certificate to such effect signed by the Secretary, or by a person authorised for the purpose by the Secretary, shall be sufficient evidence of the matters stated in the certificate.

    (4) The citizenship of any New Zealand citizen by descent that has lapsed before the commencement of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2000 is reinstated with effect from the time it lapsed.

    Compare: 1948 No 15 s 7

    Section 7(1): replaced, on 21 April 2005, by section 6 of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2005 (2005 No 43).

    Section 7(2): replaced, on 10 December 2001, by section 5 of the Citizenship Amendment Act (No 2) 2001 (2001 No 95).

    Section 7(3): inserted, on 18 November 1992, by section 5 of the Citizenship Amendment Act 1992 (1992 No 104).

    Section 7(4): inserted, on 8 April 2000, by section 3(2) of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2000 (2000 No 9).

8 Citizenship by grant
  • (1) The Minister may authorise the grant of New Zealand citizenship to any person, including a person who may be a New Zealand citizen by descent, who—

    • (a) has attained the age of 16 years; and

    • (b) is of full capacity; and

    • (c) applies for citizenship in the prescribed manner; and

    • (d) satisfies the Minister that he or she meets each of the requirements specified in subsection (2).

    (2) The requirements referred to in subsection (1)(d) are as follows:

    • (a) that the applicant is entitled in terms of the Immigration Act 2009 to be in New Zealand indefinitely:

    • (b) that the applicant was present in New Zealand—

      • (i) for a minimum of 1 350 days during the 5 years immediately preceding the date of the application; and

      • (ii) for at least 240 days in each of those 5 years,—

      being days during which the applicant was entitled in terms of the Immigration Act 2009 to be in New Zealand indefinitely:

    • (c) that the applicant is of good character:

    • (d) that the applicant has sufficient knowledge of the responsibilities and privileges attaching to New Zealand citizenship:

    • (e) that the applicant has sufficient knowledge of the English language:

    • (f) that the applicant intends, if granted New Zealand citizenship, either—

      • (i) to continue to reside in New Zealand; or

      • (ii) to enter into or continue in Crown service under the New Zealand Government, or service under an international organisation of which the New Zealand Government is a member, or service in the employment of a person, company, society, or other body of persons resident or established in New Zealand.

    (3) For the purposes of subsection (2)(a), a person will not be treated as entitled to be in New Zealand indefinitely if—

    • (a) conditions have been imposed under the Immigration Act 2009 on the person’s entitlement to reside in New Zealand indefinitely; and

    • (b) those conditions have not been met in full or cancelled at the time of the person's application for citizenship.

    (4) The Minister may, after consultation with the Minister of Immigration,—

    • (a) waive the requirement in subsection (2)(a) if satisfied that an applicant is entitled to reside indefinitely in the Cook Islands, Niue, or Tokelau:

    • (b) waive the requirement in subsection (2)(b) if satisfied that an applicant was present in the Cook Islands, Niue, or Tokelau—

      • (i) for a minimum of 1 350 days during the 5 years immediately preceding the date of the application; and

      • (ii) for at least 240 days in each of those 5 years,—

      being days during which the applicant was entitled to reside indefinitely in the Cook Islands, Niue, or Tokelau.

    (5) For the purposes of subsection (2)(b), the Minister may treat the applicant as having been in New Zealand for any period within the period of 5 years immediately preceding the date of application for citizenship during which—

    • (a) the applicant was in Crown service under the New Zealand Government; or

    • (b) the applicant was outside New Zealand because the applicant was accompanying his or her spouse or civil union or de facto partner who was a New Zealand citizen in Crown service under the New Zealand Government.

    (6) For the purposes of subsection (4)(b), the Minister may treat the applicant as having been present in the Cook Islands, Niue, or Tokelau for any period within the period of 5 years immediately preceding the date of the application for citizenship during which—

    • (a) the applicant served in the public service of the Government of the Cook Islands, Niue, or Tokelau; or

    • (b) the applicant was outside New Zealand because the applicant was accompanying his or her spouse or civil union or de facto partner who was a New Zealand citizen serving in the public service of the Cook Islands, Niue, or Tokelau.

    (7) If the Minister is satisfied in a particular case that there are exceptional circumstances particular to the applicant that would justify such a course, the Minister may accept the presence by the applicant for a lesser number of days as being sufficient compliance with—

    • (a) the requirements of subsection (2)(b), so long as the applicant—

      • (i) was physically present in New Zealand for not less than 450 days during the 20-month period immediately preceding the date of the application for citizenship; and

      • (ii) was entitled in terms of the Immigration Act 2009 to be in New Zealand indefinitely during each of those 450 days:

    • (b) the requirements of subsection (4)(b), so long as the applicant—

      • (i) was physically present in the Cook Islands, Niue, or Tokelau for not less than 450 days during the 20-month period immediately preceding the date of the application for citizenship; and

      • (ii) was entitled to be in the Cook Islands, Niue, or Tokelau indefinitely during each of those 450 days.

    (8) The Minister may waive the requirement in subsection (2)(e) if satisfied in a particular case that, because of the applicant's age or standard of education, or for any other reason personal to the applicant, the applicant would suffer undue hardship if compliance with the requirement of that provision were insisted upon.

    (9) For the purposes of subsection (2)(f),—

    • (a) the intention referred to in subsection (2)(f)(i) must be a continuing intention throughout the period from the date of application for citizenship until the date that the applicant becomes a citizen under section 12:

    • (b) the Minister may treat an applicant as intending to continue to reside in New Zealand if the applicant intends to accompany his or her New Zealand citizen spouse or civil union or de facto partner on Crown service for the New Zealand Government or public service for the Government of the Cook Islands, Niue, or Tokelau.

    Section 8: replaced, on 21 April 2005, by section 7 of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2005 (2005 No 43).

    Section 8(2)(a): amended, at 2 am on 29 November 2010, by section 406(1) of the Immigration Act 2009 (2009 No 51).

    Section 8(2)(b): amended, at 2 am on 29 November 2010, by section 406(1) of the Immigration Act 2009 (2009 No 51).

    Section 8(3)(a): replaced, at 2 am on 29 November 2010, by section 406(1) of the Immigration Act 2009 (2009 No 51).

    Section 8(3)(b): amended, at 2 am on 29 November 2010, by section 406(1) of the Immigration Act 2009 (2009 No 51).

    Section 8(7)(a)(ii): amended, at 2 am on 29 November 2010, by section 406(1) of the Immigration Act 2009 (2009 No 51).

8A Grant of citizenship to spouse of New Zealand citizen
  • [Repealed]

    Section 8A: repealed, on 21 April 2005, by section 7 of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2005 (2005 No 43).

9 Grant of citizenship in special cases
  • (1) Without limiting anything in section 8, the Minister may, upon application in the prescribed manner, authorise the grant of New Zealand citizenship to any person, including a person who may be a New Zealand citizen by descent,—

    • (a) who has not yet attained the age of 16 years; or

    • (b) whose father or mother was, at the time of that person's birth, a New Zealand citizen by descent; or

    • (c) if the Minister is satisfied that granting a certificate of New Zealand citizenship to the applicant would be in the public interest because of exceptional circumstances of a humanitarian or other nature relating to the applicant; or

    • (d) if the person would otherwise be stateless.

    (2) In considering whether to authorise the grant of New Zealand citizenship to any person under subsection (1), the Minister—

    • (a) may have regard to such of the requirements of section 8(2) (as subject to section 8(3) to (9)) as the Minister thinks fit; and

    • (b) must have regard to the requirements of section 9A(1) (but subject to the Minister's discretion under section 9A(2) and (3)).

    Section 9: replaced, on 21 April 2005, by section 7 of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2005 (2005 No 43).

9A Disqualifying convictions
  • (1) Except as provided in subsection (2), the Minister must not authorise a grant of citizenship under section 8 or section 9 to a person who has been convicted of an offence if—

    • (a) the person was sentenced on conviction to—

      • (i) a term of imprisonment of 5 years or more; or

      • (ii) an indefinite term of imprisonment capable of running for 5 years or more; or

    • (b) within the preceding 7 years the person was subject to a sentence of imprisonment of less than 5 years or was subject to release under subpart 2 of Part 1 of the Parole Act 2002; or

    • (c) within the preceding 3 years the person was convicted of an offence but did not receive a sentence of imprisonment.

    (2) The Minister may however authorise a grant of citizenship to a person to whom subsection (1) applies and who otherwise meets the requirements of section 8 or section 9 if satisfied that there are exceptional circumstances relating to the conviction such that a grant of citizenship should not be precluded.

    (3) Nothing in this section limits the Minister's discretion to refuse a grant of citizenship if the Minister is not satisfied that the applicant is of good character.

    Section 9A: inserted, on 21 April 2005, by section 7 of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2005 (2005 No 43).

9B Minister may rescind approval at any time up until applicant becomes citizen
  • Notwithstanding that the Minister may have authorised a grant of citizenship under section 8 or section 9, the Minister may rescind that authorisation at any time before the date that the person becomes a citizen under section 12, if no longer satisfied that the person meets the requirements for a grant of citizenship.

    Section 9B: inserted, on 21 April 2005, by section 7 of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2005 (2005 No 43).

10 Grant of citizenship as of right in certain cases
  • (1) Notwithstanding anything in section 8 or section 9, the Minister shall, upon application made to him in the prescribed manner, authorise the grant of New Zealand citizenship to any person who was born before 1 January 1978 if, at the time of that person's birth, his mother was a New Zealand citizen otherwise than by descent.

    (2) This section does not apply to a person who has previously been deprived of New Zealand citizenship by order under section 16 or section 17, or renounced his or her citizenship under section 15.

    Section 10(2): inserted, on 10 December 2001, by section 8 of the Citizenship Amendment Act (No 2) 2001 (2001 No 95).

11 Minister may require oath or affirmation of allegiance to be taken
  • (1) The Minister may, in such case or class of cases as the Minister thinks fit, make the grant of New Zealand citizenship conditional upon the applicant taking an oath of allegiance in the form specified in Schedule 1, or making an affirmation to similar effect.

    (2) Unless the Minister agrees otherwise, the oath or affirmation must be taken or made at a public citizenship ceremony.

    Section 11: replaced, on 21 April 2005, by section 8 of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2005 (2005 No 43).

12 Certificate of New Zealand citizenship
  • (1) Where the Minister authorises the grant of New Zealand citizenship to any person, the Secretary shall issue to that person a certificate of New Zealand citizenship in the prescribed form.

    (2) A person to whom a certificate of New Zealand citizenship is issued under subsection (1) shall be a New Zealand citizen as from the specified date.

    (3) Where a certificate of New Zealand citizenship is issued to a person who is a New Zealand citizen by descent, he shall cease to have that status as from the specified date.

    (4) For the purposes of subsections (2) and (3) the specified date shall be—

    • (a) in the case of a person required under section 11 to take an oath of allegiance, the date on which he takes that oath or makes an affirmation to the same effect:

    • (b) in every other case, the date specified in the certificate.

    Compare: 1948 No 18 ss 11, 14

Transitional provisions relating to citizenship

13 Existing rights of citizenship protected
  • (1) Notwithstanding the repeal of the British Nationality and New Zealand Citizenship Act 1948 by section 30, every person who, by virtue of that Act, was a New Zealand citizen immediately before the commencement of this Act, shall, subject to the succeeding provisions of this Part, continue to be a New Zealand citizen.

    (2) Notwithstanding subsection (1), a person who, by virtue of the British Nationality and New Zealand Citizenship Act 1948, was, immediately before the commencement of this Act, a New Zealand citizen by descent only, shall, for the purposes of this Act, be deemed to be a New Zealand citizen by descent only.

    (3) Without limiting subsection (1) or subsection (2), but subject to subsection (4), every person born outside New Zealand on or after 1 January 1949 but before 1 January 1978 shall be a New Zealand citizen by descent if—

    • (a) in any case, his father was a New Zealand citizen at the time of that person's birth; or

    • (b) in the case of a person born on or after 1 January 1970 (being the date of the commencement of the Status of Children Act 1969), his mother was a New Zealand citizen at the time of his birth.

    (4) A person shall not be a New Zealand citizen by virtue of subsection (3) if that person's relevant parent was a New Zealand citizen by descent only, unless—

    • (a) that person or his relevant parent was born in a protectorate, protected State, mandated territory, or trust territory, or any place in a foreign country where by treaty, capitulation, grant, usage, sufferance, or other lawful means Her Majesty then had jurisdiction over British subjects; or

    • (b) in the case of a person born in a place other than a place mentioned in paragraph (a), his birth or citizenship by descent is registered, in accordance with regulations made under this Act, before that person has attained the age of 16 years; or

    • (c) the relevant parent of that person was, at the time of the person's birth, in Crown service under the New Zealand Government.

    Section 13(4)(b): amended, on 18 November 1992, by section 9 of the Citizenship Amendment Act 1992 (1992 No 104).

14 Applications made under British Nationality and New Zealand Citizenship Act 1948 may be proceeded with under this Act
  • If a person has, before the commencement of this Act,—

    • (a) applied for registration as a New Zealand citizen; or

    • (b) given notice of his intention to apply for a certificate of naturalisation; or

    • (c) applied for a certificate of naturalisation—

    in accordance with the provisions of the British Nationality and New Zealand Citizenship Act 1948, the application (if it has not been finally determined under that Act) or notice may be dealt with in accordance with this Act as if it were an application for the grant of New Zealand citizenship under this Act.

Loss of citizenship

15 Renunciation of citizenship
  • (1) A New Zealand citizen who has attained the age of 18 years and is of full capacity and who is recognised by the law of another country as a citizen of that country may, at any time, make a declaration of renunciation of his New Zealand citizenship in the prescribed manner.

    (2) Subject to subsection (3), the Minister shall cause every declaration made under subsection (1) to be registered in the prescribed manner, and, as from the date of that registration, the declarant shall cease to be a New Zealand citizen.

    (3) The Minister may decline to register a declaration of renunciation if—

    • (a) the declarant is resident in New Zealand; or

    • (b) a state of war exists between New Zealand and any other country.

    (4) A person who has ceased to be a New Zealand citizen under this section may regain New Zealand citizenship only by way of a grant of citizenship under section 8 or section 8A or section 9.

    Compare: 1948 No 15 s 21

    Section 15(3)(a): amended, on 21 April 2005, by section 9 of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2005 (2005 No 43).

    Section 15(4): inserted, on 10 December 2001, by section 9 of the Citizenship Amendment Act (No 2) 2001 (2001 No 95).

16 Deprivation of New Zealand citizenship in special cases
  • Subject to section 19, the Minister may, by order, deprive a person of his New Zealand citizenship if he is satisfied that the person has, while a New Zealand citizen and while of or over the age of 18 years and of full capacity,—

    • (a) acquired the nationality or citizenship of another country by any voluntary and formal act, and acted in a manner that is contrary to the interests of New Zealand; or

    • (b) voluntarily exercised any of the privileges or performed any of the duties of another nationality or citizenship possessed by him in a manner that is contrary to the interests of New Zealand.

    Compare: 1948 No 15 s 22

    Section 16 heading: amended, on 21 April 2005, by section 10(1) of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2005 (2005 No 43).

    Section 16(a): amended, on 21 April 2005, by section 10(2) of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2005 (2005 No 43).

17 Deprivation of New Zealand citizenship in case of fraud, etc
  • (1) This section applies to a New Zealand citizen who has acquired that citizenship—

    • (a) by registration under the British Nationality and New Zealand Citizenship Act 1948; or

    • (b) by naturalisation under that Act; or

    (2) Subject to section 19, the Minister may, by order, deprive a New Zealand citizen to whom this section applies of his New Zealand citizenship if he is satisfied that the registration, naturalisation, grant, or any grant requirement was procured by fraud, false representation, or wilful concealment of relevant information, or by mistake.

    (3) The Minister may not deprive a person of New Zealand citizenship under subsection (2) if—

    • (a) the citizenship was acquired by mistake; and

    • (b) to deprive the person of that citizenship would leave the person stateless.

    Compare: 1948 No 15 s 23

    Section 17(1)(c): amended, on 15 September 1982, by section 10 of the Citizenship (Western Samoa) Act 1982 (1982 No 11).

    Section 17(2): amended, on 21 April 2005, by section 11(1) of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2005 (2005 No 43).

    Section 17(3): inserted, on 21 April 2005, by section 11(2) of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2005 (2005 No 43).

18 Effect of order
  • A person in respect of whom an order is made under section 16 or section 17 shall cease to be a New Zealand citizen as from the date of the order.

19 Court review of grounds for depriving person of citizenship
  • (1) Before making an order under section 16 or section 17 depriving any person of New Zealand citizenship, the Minister shall serve on that person a notice—

    • (a) stating that he intends to make such an order; and

    • (b) citing the section of this Act under which he considers that he has grounds to make such an order; and

    • (c) specifying the grounds on which he intends to make such an order; and

    • (d) advising the person of his right to have the matter reviewed by the court in accordance with the succeeding provisions of this section.

    (2) Every person upon whom a notice is served under subsection (1) may, within 28 days after it is served on him, apply to the High Court for a declaration that there are insufficient grounds to justify the making of an order under section 16 or, as the case may require, section 17 depriving the applicant of New Zealand citizenship; and the court may make or refuse to make such a declaration accordingly.

    (3) Notwithstanding any of the foregoing provisions of this section, in any case where the whereabouts of the person concerned are unknown or for any other reason service on him of a notice under this section is not practicable, the Minister may apply to the court for the dispensing of the requirement to serve notice; and, in such a case, if the court dispenses with that requirement, it shall proceed to consider the merits of the case, in accordance with the provisions of this section, as if the person concerned had applied to the court for a declaration of the kind referred to in subsection (2).

    (4) Where the court makes such a declaration, the Minister shall not thereafter, without fresh cause, make an order under section 16 or section 17 depriving the applicant of New Zealand citizenship.

    (5) [Repealed]

    (6) Subject to the succeeding provisions of this section, the procedure in respect of an application under this section shall be in accordance with the rules of court.

    (7) When hearing any application under this section the court may receive as evidence any statement, document, information, or matter that, in the opinion of the court, may assist it to deal justly with the application before it, whether or not the same would be otherwise admissible in proceedings before the court.

    (8) Where the court is satisfied that it is desirable to do so by reason of the confidential nature of any evidence submitted or to be submitted to it in respect of any application under this section, the court may, of its own motion or on the application of any party to the proceedings,—

    • (a) take or hear the evidence in private:

    • (b) make an order prohibiting the publication of any report or account of the whole or any part of any such evidence (whether heard or taken in public or private).

    (9) The determination of the High Court on any such application shall be final.

    Compare: 1948 No 15 s 23(6), (7); SR 1949/121

    Section 19(2): amended, on 1 April 1980, pursuant to section 12 of the Judicature Amendment Act 1979 (1979 No 124).

    Section 19(5): repealed, on 15 August 1991, by section 3(4) of the Judicature Amendment Act 1991 (1991 No 60).

    Section 19(9): inserted, on 15 August 1991, by section 3(4) of the Judicature Amendment Act 1991 (1991 No 60).

20 Saving of obligations incurred before loss of citizenship, etc
  • A person who ceases to be a New Zealand citizen shall not thereby be discharged from any obligation, duty, or liability in respect of any act or thing done or omitted to be done before he ceased to be a New Zealand citizen.

    Compare: 1948 No 15 s 25

Miscellaneous provisions relating to citizenship

21 Evidentiary certificates
  • (1) Any person who wishes to obtain confirmation of whether he or she is or is not a New Zealand citizen may apply to the Minister in the prescribed manner for a certificate confirming the person's status in that respect.

    (2) The Minister shall, if satisfied that any such person is or is not a New Zealand citizen, issue a certificate to that effect.

    (3) A certificate issued under this section shall, unless it is proved that the issue of the certificate was procured by fraud, false representation, or the wilful concealment of relevant information, or was the result of administrative error, be evidence that the person named in the certificate was or was not, on the date on which the certificate was issued, a New Zealand citizen, but without prejudice to any evidence that he or she was or was not a New Zealand citizen at an earlier date.

    Section 21: replaced, on 18 November 1992, by section 10 of the Citizenship Amendment Act 1992 (1992 No 104).

22 Minister may delegate functions and powers to overseas representatives
  • (1) The Minister may from time to time, by writing under his hand, authorise any New Zealand overseas representative in any country to perform and exercise in that country any of the Minister's functions and powers under this Part.

    (2) In the performance or exercise of any such functions or powers, the New Zealand overseas representative shall act in accordance with all directions in that behalf given to him by the Minister, whether generally or in a particular case.

    (3) Any authority and any directions under this section may be given to a specified person, or to the holder for the time being of a specified office.

    Compare: 1948 No 15 s 10

Part 2
Miscellaneous provisions

23 Capacity as to property
  • (1) Subject to subsection (2) and to any other enactment, every person who is not a New Zealand citizen shall be entitled to take, acquire, hold, and dispose of real or personal property in the same manner in all respects as if he were a New Zealand citizen.

    (2) Subsection (1) shall not—

    • (a) qualify an alien for any office, or for any parliamentary or other franchise, for which he is not otherwise qualified:

    • (b) qualify an alien to be the owner of a ship registered in New Zealand, or of a share in any such ship:

    • (d) entitle a person to any right or privilege as a New Zealand citizen, except the rights and privileges conferred on him in respect of property by that subsection.

    Compare: 1948 No 28 s 3

    Section 23(2)(c): replaced, on 25 August 2005, by section 75 of the Overseas Investment Act 2005 (2005 No 82).

24 General provisions as to certificates and other documents
  • (1) For the purposes of this section the term document means a certificate or other document issued under this Act; and includes a certificate or other document issued under any enactment referred to in section 25(1); and also includes a duplicate of any such certificate or other document.

    (2) No person shall alter or deface a document otherwise than pursuant to this Act.

    (3) Every person to whom a document is or has been issued shall, on the expiry or revocation of the document, or of the exemption or condition or status evidenced by it, deliver the document to the Secretary.

    (4) If a document that has been damaged to the extent that it is no longer legible is returned to the Secretary, or if the Secretary is satisfied that a document has been destroyed, lost, or stolen, the Secretary shall, upon application by the person to whom the document was issued and upon payment of the prescribed fee, issue a duplicate of the document.

25 Evidence
  • (1) Every document purporting to be a notice, certificate, or declaration, or an entry in a register, or a subscription of an oath of allegiance given, granted, or made under this Act, the British Nationality and Status of Aliens (in New Zealand) Act 1923 or any enactment repealed by that Act, the British Nationality and Status of Aliens (in New Zealand) Act 1928, or the Registration of Aliens Act 1917, or any enactment repealed by section 30 shall be received in evidence, and shall, unless the contrary is proved, be deemed to have been given, granted, or made by or on whose behalf it purports to have been given, granted, or made.

    (2) Evidence of any document to which subsection (1) applies may be given by production of a document purporting to be certified as a true copy thereof by such person and in such manner as may be prescribed.

    (3) Any entry in a register made under this Act or any other Act referred to in subsection (1) shall be received as evidence of the matters stated in the entry.

    (4) For the purposes of this Act, a certificate given by or on behalf of the Minister that a person was at any time in Crown service under the New Zealand Government shall be conclusive evidence of that fact.

    Compare: 1948 No 15 s 30

26 Discovery of documents held under this Act
  • (1) Notwithstanding section 17 or section 27 of the Crown Proceedings Act 1950, but subject to subsection (2), no court shall have power in any civil proceedings to require the Crown to make discovery of a document or to produce a document for inspection if the document is held by or on behalf of the Crown for any of the purposes of this Act.

    (2) Subsection (1) does not apply to proceedings relating to any matter arising under this Act to which the Crown is a party.

26A Disclosure of citizenship information to certain specified agencies for certain purposes
  • (1) The purpose of this section is to authorise the disclosure of citizenship information to certain specified agencies for certain purposes.

    (2) The Secretary and the chief executive of a specified agency listed in the first column of Schedule 4 may enter into an agreement for the disclosure by the Secretary to the chief executive of citizenship information only for the purpose described in the second column in relation to the specified agency.

    (3) For the purposes of subsection (2), an agreement made in relation to citizenship information to be used to verify whether a person is eligible to hold a New Zealand passport, must be entered into by the Secretary in his or her capacity as the holder of citizenship information with himself or herself in the capacity as the holder of information under the Passports Act 1992.

    (4) An agreement entered into under subsection (2) may be varied by the Secretary and the chief executive.

    (5) The Secretary may disclose citizenship information to the chief executive only in accordance with Schedule 4 and an agreement entered into under subsection (2).

    (5A) Despite anything in this section, the Secretary may disclose information about a person's citizenship status or the citizenship status of a person's parent or parents to the Registrar-General appointed under section 79(1) of the Births, Deaths, Marriages, and Relationships Registration Act 1995 for the purpose of recording that person's citizenship status on his or her birth record.

    (6) In this section,—

    citizenship information means information held by the Secretary that relates to the acquisition or loss of citizenship by, or the citizenship status of, any person; and includes information as to any change of identity or gender

    specified agency has the meaning given to it by section 97 of the Privacy Act 1993.

    Section 26A: inserted, 27 September 2001, by section 3 of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2001 (2001 No 58).

    Section 26A(5A): inserted, on 21 April 2005, by section 12(2) of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2005 (2005 No 43).

    Section 26A(5A): amended, on 24 January 2009, by section 47 of the Births, Deaths, Marriages, and Relationships Registration Amendment Act 2008 (2008 No 48).

    Section 26A(6) citizenship information: amended, on 21 April 2005, by section 12(1) of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2005 (2005 No 43).

26B Access to information for citizenship purposes
  • (1) The Secretary and the chief executive of the department that is, with the authority of the Prime Minister, for the time being responsible for the administration of the Immigration Act 2009 (the chief executive) may enter into an agreement for access by the Secretary, or officers of the Department of Internal Affairs designated by the Secretary for the purpose, to information held by the chief executive by virtue of being responsible for the administration of the Immigration Act 2009 that is needed for or relevant to—

    • (a) citizenship investigations and the accurate assessment of applications for a grant of citizenship; or

    • (b) determining whether a person is a New Zealand citizen by birth.

    (2) An agreement entered into under subsection (1) may be varied by the Secretary and the chief executive.

    (3) Before entering into an agreement under subsection (1), or varying an agreement under subsection (2), the Secretary and the chief executive must consult with the Privacy Commissioner on the terms of the agreement or variation.

    (4) The Privacy Commissioner may require the Secretary and the chief executive to review an agreement under this section, and report on the result of the review to the Privacy Commissioner, at intervals not shorter than 12 months.

    (5) For citizenship purposes, the Secretary or designated officers of the Department of Internal Affairs may access information held by the chief executive only in accordance with an agreement entered into under this section.

    Section 26B: inserted, on 21 April 2005, by section 13 of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2005 (2005 No 43).

    Section 26B(1): amended, at 2 am on 29 November 2010, by section 406(1) of the Immigration Act 2009 (2009 No 51).

26C Access to information for purposes of Identity Information Confirmation Act 2012
  • Nothing in this Act limits access to information that is recorded under this Act if the access is for the purposes of, and in accordance with, the Identity Information Confirmation Act 2012.

    Section 26C: inserted, on 19 December 2012, by section 22 of the Identity Information Confirmation Act 2012 (2012 No 124).

27 Offences and penalties
  • (1) Every person commits an offence, and is liable on conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 5 years or a fine not exceeding $15,000, or both, who—

    • (a) for the purpose of procuring anything to be done or not to be done under this Act,—

      • (i) makes any statement that he or she knows to be false in a material particular; or

      • (ii) recklessly makes any statement that is false in a material particular; or

    • (b) knowingly or recklessly submits false or forged documents to support a citizenship application; or

    • (c) in contravention of section 24, knowingly—

      • (i) alters or defaces a document; or

      • (ii) fails to deliver a document; or

    • (d) knowingly or recklessly lends or parts with a document (as defined in section 24(1)) for unlawful purposes; or

    • (e) knowingly resists, obstructs, or deceives any person who is exercising or attempting to exercise any function or power imposed or conferred under this Act.

    (2) Every person commits an offence, and is liable on conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 10 years or a fine not exceeding $50,000, or both, who, knowingly and without reasonable excuse,—

    • (a) records, deletes, or alters any entry in a citizenship register or database; or

    • (b) takes a citizenship document (including any blank certificate) from where it is officially kept; or

    • (c) issues a citizenship document to a person who has no lawful entitlement to the document.

    Section 27: replaced, on 21 April 2005, by section 14 of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2005 (2005 No 43).

    Section 27(1): amended, on 1 July 2013, by section 413 of the Criminal Procedure Act 2011 (2011 No 81).

    Section 27(2): amended, on 1 July 2013, by section 413 of the Criminal Procedure Act 2011 (2011 No 81).

28 Regulations
  • (1) The Governor-General may from time to time, by Order in Council, make regulations for all or any of the following purposes:

    • (a) prescribing anything that under this Act is to be prescribed:

    • (b) providing for the registration of anything required or authorised under this Act to be registered:

    • (c) providing for the administration and taking of oaths of allegiance under this Act, prescribing the time within which oaths of allegiance shall be taken, and providing for the registration of oaths of allegiance:

    • (d) providing for the giving of any notice required or authorised to be given to any person under this Act:

    • (e) providing for the cancellation and amendment of certificates of naturalisation and certificates of New Zealand citizenship, and for the cancellation of the registration of such certificates, relating to persons deprived of New Zealand citizenship under this Act, and providing for the surrender of such certificates by such persons:

    • (f) providing for the registration, by officers in the service of the New Zealand Government,—

      • (i) of the births and deaths of persons of any class or description born or dying in any Commonwealth country, or in a protected State, or in any foreign country:

      • (ii) of citizenship by descent of persons born in any Commonwealth country, or in a protected State, or in any foreign country:

    • (g) enabling the births and deaths, and the citizenship by descent, of New Zealand citizens and British protected persons to be registered in any country in which the New Zealand Government has for the time being no overseas representatives—

      • (i) by persons serving in the diplomatic, consular, or other foreign service of any country that, by arrangement with the New Zealand Government, has undertaken to represent that Government's interests in that country; or

      • (ii) by any person authorised in that behalf by the Governor-General:

    • (h) providing for the keeping of records, registers, and indexes for the purposes of this Act, and enabling persons to inspect and make copies of any entry in any such record, register, or index:

    • (i) prescribing the fees payable, or the rate at which fees are to be calculated, and providing for the recovery and application of such fees, in respect of—

      • (i) any application made under this Act:

      • (ii) the registration of any document under this Act:

      • (iii) the making of any declaration under this Act:

      • (iv) the taking of an oath of allegiance under this Act:

      • (v) the grant of any certificate under this Act:

      • (vi) the issue of any copy (whether certified or not) of any notice, certificate, order, declaration, or entry given, granted, or made under this Act:

      • (vii) the inspection of any record, register, or index kept under this Act:

      • (viia) the giving of written advice or the provision of written information, by or on behalf of the Secretary and whether generally or in relation to a particular case, in respect of all or any of the following:

        • (A) the eligibility of any person for citizenship by descent:

        • (B) the acquisition by any person of citizenship:

        • (C) the status of any person under this Act:

      • (viii) any other matter arising under this Act:

    • (j) [Repealed]

    • (k) prescribing offences in respect of the contravention of or non-compliance with any regulations made under this Act, and prescribing the amount of any fine that may be imposed in respect of any such offence, being an amount not exceeding $200 and, where the offence is a continuing one, a further amount not exceeding $20 for every day during which the offence has continued:

    • (l) providing for such other matters as are contemplated by or necessary for giving full effect to the provisions of this Act and for the due administration thereof.

    (2) Every fee prescribed by or under regulations made under this section shall be reasonable, having regard to the costs and expenses incurred and borne by or on behalf of the Secretary in respect of the matter for which the fee is payable.

    Section 28(1)(f): replaced, on 18 November 1992, by section 12(1) of the Citizenship Amendment Act 1992 (1992 No 104).

    Section 28(1)(g): replaced, on 18 November 1992, by section 12(1) of the Citizenship Amendment Act 1992 (1992 No 104).

    Section 28(1)(h): replaced, on 1 April 1987, by section 25(1) of the Official Information Amendment Act 1987 (1987 No 8).

    Section 28(1)(i): amended, on 18 November 1992, by section 12(2) of the Citizenship Amendment Act 1992 (1992 No 104).

    Section 28(1)(i)(viia): inserted, on 18 November 1992, by section 12(3) of the Citizenship Amendment Act 1992 (1992 No 104).

    Section 28(1)(i)(viib): inserted, on 18 November 1992, by section 12(3) of the Citizenship Amendment Act 1992 (1992 No 104).

    Section 28(1)(j): repealed, on 1 September 1995, by section 96 of the Births, Deaths, Marriages, and Relationships Registration Act 1995 (1995 No 16).

    Section 28(2): inserted, on 18 November 1992, by section 12(4) of the Citizenship Amendment Act 1992 (1992 No 104).

29 Application of Act to Cook Islands, Niue, and Tokelau
  • (1) Whereas in accordance with Article 46 of the Constitution of the Cook Islands (as set out in Schedule 2 of the Cook Islands Constitution Amendment Act 1965) the Government of the Cook Islands has requested and consented to the enactment of a provision extending all of the provisions of this Act to the Cook Islands as part of the law of the Cook Islands:

    Be it therefore enacted as follows:

    The provisions of this Act shall extend to the Cook Islands as part of the law of the Cook Islands.

    (2) Amendment(s) incorporated in the Act(s).

    (3) The provisions of this Act shall be in force in Tokelau.

30 Repeals, consequential amendments, and revocation
  • (1) The enactments specified in Schedule 2 are hereby consequentially repealed.

    (2) The enactments specified in Schedule 3 are hereby consequentially amended in the manner indicated in that schedule.

    (3) The Citizenship Deprivation Rules 1949 are hereby consequentially revoked.


Schedule 1
Oath of allegiance

s 11

  • Schedule 1: replaced, on 14 December 1979, by section 2 of the Citizenship Amendment Act 1979 (1979 No 80).

I, [full name], swear that I will be faithful and bear true allegiance to Her (or His) Majesty [specify the name of the reigning Sovereign, as thus: Queen Elizabeth the Second, Queen of New Zealand,] Her (or His) heirs and successors, according to law, and that I will faithfully observe the laws of New Zealand and fulfil my duties as a New Zealand citizen.

So help me God.


Schedule 2
Enactments consequentially repealed

s 30(1)

Aliens Act 1948 (1948 No 28)

Amendment(s) incorporated in the Act(s).

Aliens Amendment Act 1965 (1965 No 71)

Amendment(s) incorporated in the Act(s).

Aliens Amendment Act 1967 (1967 No 56)
British Nationality and New Zealand Citizenship Act 1948 (1948 No 15)
British Nationality and New Zealand Citizenship Amendment Act 1959 (1959 No 38)
British Nationality and New Zealand Citizenship Amendment Act 1965 (1965 No 72)
British Nationality and New Zealand Citizenship Amendment Act 1969 (1969 No 70)
British Nationality and New Zealand Citizenship Amendment Act 1973 (1973 No 51)
Western Samoa Amendment Act 1970 (1970 No 123)

Schedule 3
Enactments consequentially amended

s 30(2)

Adoption Act 1955 (1955 No 93)

Amendment(s) incorporated in the Act(s).

Age of Majority Act 1970 (1970 No 137)

Amendment(s) incorporated in the Act(s).

Consular Privileges and Immunities Act 1971 (1971 No 11)

Amendment(s) incorporated in the Act(s).

Diplomatic Privileges and Immunities Act 1968 (1968 No 36)

Amendment(s) incorporated in the Act(s).

Status of Children Act 1969 (1969 No 18)

Amendment(s) incorporated in the Act(s).

Western Samoa Act 1961 (1961 No 68)

Amendment(s) incorporated in the Act(s).


Schedule 4
Disclosure of information to specified agencies

s 26A

  • Schedule 4: inserted, on 27 September 2001, by section 4 of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2001 (2001 No 58).

Specified agency Purpose
Department of Internal Affairs 

To verify whether a person is eligible to hold a New Zealand passport

Registrar-General appointed under section 79(1) of the Births, Deaths, Marriages, and Relationships Registration Act 1995

 

For the Registrar-General to be satisfied whether or not a person is a New Zealand citizen

Department of Inland Revenue 

To verify the identity of a person to establish—

  • (a) the tax file number of the person:

  • (b) the details of an applicant for child support

Department of Labour 

To verify—

  • (a) a person's citizenship status:

  • (b) a person's entitlement to reside in New Zealand

Ministry of Social Development 

To—

  • (a) verify a person's eligibility or continuing eligibility for benefits, war pensions, grants, loans, or allowances:

  • (b) verify a person's eligibility or continuing eligibility for a community services card

Ministry of Education 

To verify and update student information on the National Student Index

  • Schedule 4: amended, on 24 January 2009, by section 47 of the Births, Deaths, Marriages, and Relationships Registration Amendment Act 2008 (2008 No 48).

  • Schedule 4: amended, on 21 April 2005, by section 15 of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2005 (2005 No 43).

  • Schedule 4: amended (with effect on 1 October 2001), on 2 August 2003, pursuant to section 13(1) of the State Sector Amendment Act 2003 (2003 No 41).

  • Schedule 4: amended, on 19 December 2002, by section 3(1) of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2002 (2002 No 62).

  • Schedule 4: amended, on 19 December 2002, by section 3(2) of the Citizenship Amendment Act 2002 (2002 No 62).


Citizenship Amendment Act 2005

Public Act2005 No 43
Date of assent20 April 2005
Commencementsee section 2
1 Title
2 Commencement
  • This Act comes into force on the day after the date on which it receives the Royal assent.

Transitional provision

17 Transitional provisions in relation to applications for citizenship
  • (1) Nothing in new sections 8, 9, 9A, and 9B of the principal Act applies in relation to any application for a grant of citizenship made before the date of commencement of this Act, and any such application must be determined in accordance with the former sections 8, 8A, and 9 of the principal Act.

    (2) An application for a grant of citizenship made during the 5-year period commencing with the date of commencement of this Act by a person of a kind described in subsection (3) must be determined in accordance with the new sections 8, 9, 9A, and 9B of the principal Act as if—

    • (a) subsections (2)(b), (4)(b) and (7) of the new section 8 (which set minimum presence requirements for the period of 5 years preceding the date of application for citizenship) did not apply; and

    • (b) there were substituted for those provisions subsections (2)(a), and (4) of the former section 8 (which set residence requirements for the period of 3 years preceding the date of application for citizenship) of the principal Act; and

    • (c) subsections (5) and (6) of the new section 8 applied for the purposes of the former section 8(2)(a) as if they referred to a period of 3 years rather than a period of 5 years; and

    • (d) for the purposes of the former section 8(2)(a) and (4), the time during which a person is ordinarily resident in New Zealand—

      • (i) includes time spent in New Zealand before the commencement of the Immigration Act 2009 while holding a valid immigration permit or being exempt from the requirement to hold a permit, and time spent in New Zealand after the commencement of that Act while holding a valid visa; but

      • (ii) does not include any time during which the person was unlawfully in New Zealand.

    (3) Subsection (2) applies in respect of any person who—

    • (a) before the date of commencement of this Act was entitled in terms of the Immigration Act 1987 to be in New Zealand indefinitely, or was entitled to reside indefinitely in the Cook Islands, Niue, or Tokelau; or

    • (b) became so entitled on or after the date of commencement of this Act pursuant to an application made under the Immigration Act 1987 or the Immigration Act 2009.

    (4) In this section,—

    former, in relation to any section or provision, means the relevant section or provision of the principal Act as in force before the commencement of this Act

    new, in relation to any section or provision, means the relevant section or provision of the principal Act as substituted by section 7 of this Act.

    Section 17(2)(d)(i): replaced, at 2 am on 29 November 2010, by section 406(1) of the Immigration Act 2009 (2009 No 51).

    Section 17(3)(b): replaced, at 2 am on 29 November 2010, by section 406(1) of the Immigration Act 2009 (2009 No 51).


Contents

  • 1General

  • 2Status of reprints

  • 3How reprints are prepared

  • 4Changes made under section 17C of the Acts and Regulations Publication Act 1989

  • 5List of amendments incorporated in this reprint (most recent first)


Notes
1 General
  • This is a reprint of the Citizenship Act 1977. The reprint incorporates all the amendments to the Act as at 1 July 2013, as specified in the list of amendments at the end of these notes.

    Relevant provisions of any amending enactments that contain transitional, savings, or application provisions that cannot be compiled in the reprint are also included, after the principal enactment, in chronological order. For more information, see http://www.pco.parliament.govt.nz/reprints/ .

2 Status of reprints
  • Under section 16D of the Acts and Regulations Publication Act 1989, reprints are presumed to correctly state, as at the date of the reprint, the law enacted by the principal enactment and by the amendments to that enactment. This presumption applies even though editorial changes authorised by section 17C of the Acts and Regulations Publication Act 1989 have been made in the reprint.

    This presumption may be rebutted by producing the official volumes of statutes or statutory regulations in which the principal enactment and its amendments are contained.

3 How reprints are prepared
  • A number of editorial conventions are followed in the preparation of reprints. For example, the enacting words are not included in Acts, and provisions that are repealed or revoked are omitted. For a detailed list of the editorial conventions, see http://www.pco.parliament.govt.nz/editorial-conventions/ or Part 8 of the Tables of New Zealand Acts and Ordinances and Statutory Regulations and Deemed Regulations in Force.

4 Changes made under section 17C of the Acts and Regulations Publication Act 1989
  • Section 17C of the Acts and Regulations Publication Act 1989 authorises the making of editorial changes in a reprint as set out in sections 17D and 17E of that Act so that, to the extent permitted, the format and style of the reprinted enactment is consistent with current legislative drafting practice. Changes that would alter the effect of the legislation are not permitted.

    A new format of legislation was introduced on 1 January 2000. Changes to legislative drafting style have also been made since 1997, and are ongoing. To the extent permitted by section 17C of the Acts and Regulations Publication Act 1989, all legislation reprinted after 1 January 2000 is in the new format for legislation and reflects current drafting practice at the time of the reprint.

    In outline, the editorial changes made in reprints under the authority of section 17C of the Acts and Regulations Publication Act 1989 are set out below, and they have been applied, where relevant, in the preparation of this reprint:

    • omission of unnecessary referential words (such as of this section and of this Act)

    • typeface and type size (Times Roman, generally in 11.5 point)

    • layout of provisions, including:

      • indentation

      • position of section headings (eg, the number and heading now appear above the section)

    • format of definitions (eg, the defined term now appears in bold type, without quotation marks)

    • format of dates (eg, a date formerly expressed as the 1st day of January 1999 is now expressed as 1 January 1999)

    • position of the date of assent (it now appears on the front page of each Act)

    • punctuation (eg, colons are not used after definitions)

    • Parts numbered with roman numerals are replaced with arabic numerals, and all cross-references are changed accordingly

    • case and appearance of letters and words, including:

      • format of headings (eg, headings where each word formerly appeared with an initial capital letter followed by small capital letters are amended so that the heading appears in bold, with only the first word (and any proper nouns) appearing with an initial capital letter)

      • small capital letters in section and subsection references are now capital letters

    • schedules are renumbered (eg, Schedule 1 replaces First Schedule), and all cross-references are changed accordingly

    • running heads (the information that appears at the top of each page)

    • format of two-column schedules of consequential amendments, and schedules of repeals (eg, they are rearranged into alphabetical order, rather than chronological).

5 List of amendments incorporated in this reprint (most recent first)