After you apply for NZ citizenship
It takes 5 to 10 months to find out if your application is approved.
COVID-19 and citizenship ceremonies
Attending a ceremony is usually the final step in your citizenship journey.
In response to COVID-19, we are following advice from the Ministry of Health to postpone large public gatherings. There will be no citizenship ceremonies until further notice.
If you are approved for a grant of citizenship, the Citizenship Office will instead send your citizenship certificate by courier post.
Getting your original documents back
If you applied by post, the Citizenship Office copy and courier your original documents back to you after 4 to 6 weeks.
When you find out about your application
About 5 to 10 months after you apply, the Citizenship Office will let you know whether your application has been approved.
If there are any problems with your application, a case officer will contact you.
If you applied for exceptional consideration
After about 2 weeks, a case officer will contact you to explain your options and what the process is.
If your application is declined
The Citizenship Office will tell you which requirements you did not meet and what you can do if you want to apply again.
While your application is still under assessment, you have the opportunity to withdraw and receive a partial refund.
If you choose to proceed and your application is declined, you will not receive a refund.
If you want to appeal the decision
The Citizenship Office will only review a decision if you can prove that the Minister was given the wrong advice or not enough information. Ask the Citizenship Office for a copy of the report that went to the Minister.
Freephone: 0800 22 51 51 (New Zealand only)
You have the right to complain to the Office of the Ombudsman.
Withdrawals and refunds
If you realise while your application is being assessed that you do not meet all the requirements for citizenship, you can withdraw your application.
- If you choose to withdraw your application, you may get a partial refund of your application fee.
- If you choose to proceed and your application is declined, you will not get a refund.
If you withdraw your application, you can apply again when you meet all of the requirements. The Citizenship Office will contact you to explain your options.
When you can apply for a passport
As soon as you have received your citizenship certificate, you can apply for a New Zealand passport.
This is a separate process.