When is my citizenship ceremony?
Generally, ceremonies are scheduled within six months of approval, although waiting periods can vary.
The Department appreciates your patience and asks that you wait to receive an invitation to your ceremony. Please do not to contact the Department or your local council about your ceremony, as the Department will write to you with details of your ceremony when one has been arranged for you.
You can see the average ceremony wait times of each council here: Ceremony wait times (homeaffairs.gov.au)
I've been invited to a ceremony but cannot attend
Only exceptional circumstances should prevent you from attending your scheduled ceremony.
In most cases, you will receive a non-attendance letter from the Department, and you will then be invited to a subsequent ceremony. Please note that as some of our processes are automated, this may result in you receiving an invitation when you have previously advised that you will be unavailable for a ceremony. It is a requirement that you attend a ceremony to take the pledge of commitment to Australia within 12 months from the notice of approval. If you do not, your approval may be cancelled.
If you need to travel overseas before you acquire Australian citizenship, you must ensure you maintain your permanent resident status in Australia and confirm if any travel bans are currently in place.
Please obtain or renew your passport from your current country of citizenship AND ensure you have a valid Resident Return Visa if the travel facility in your previous visa has ceased or will cease before you return to Australia. This requirement also applies to children. Information on the eligibility criteria for a Resident Return Visa is available here.
I need my citizenship urgently
In order to maintain the integrity and fairness of the ceremony allocation process, ceremony allocations are performed by order of approval date only. Please note there is no option to ‘fast-track’ or ‘expedite’ your ceremony. Urgent ceremonies are only approved in exceptional and very limited circumstances. In order to qualify for an urgent ceremony you are required to provide full details along with supporting evidence to demonstrate your exceptional circumstances.
If you do not provide evidence, your request will not be assessed and you will not receive a reply. Please ensure all documentation is translated into English.
If you do not meet the criteria for an urgent ceremony you will not receive a reply.
One or more of the below criteria would need to be met before any consideration can be made:
- Visiting a close family member who is terminally ill (with evidence).
- Attend a funeral of a close family member.
- Receive urgent medical treatment that cannot be received in Australia.
- Attend legal proceedings in person.
- Accompany a sick/elderly relative for one of the reasons above.
- Defence force personnel.
- Clients who will work for the Australian Government who need to be an Australian citizen to be employed.
- Clients who need to be an Australian citizen to be employed for a job they have been offered who have been waiting more than six months for a ceremony. This does not apply to applicants who are currently employed with a company and require citizenship for additional duties.
- Eligibility for HECS-Help study loans when it has been more than six months since date of approval.
Note, the following types of circumstances are not considered genuinely urgent or compelling:
- Overseas travel for employment, holidays, visiting family, or weddings.
- Pre-purchased airline tickets, cruise tickets or overseas accommodation.
- General entry-level employment requiring Australian citizenship.
- Expired travel documents or do not want to pay for a Resident Return Visa.
- Eligibility for building grants.
- Eligibility for HECS-Help study loans when it has been less than six months since date of approval.
I wish to be unlinked from someone who has not received their approval
If you are linked with an individual who has not received their citizenship approval, you will not be invited to a ceremony. You may request to be unlinked from this individual however this is irreversible and you may not in future request to attend a ceremony together. If you wish to do this, please provide the Department of Home Affairs with their full name, date of birth and Client ID or Application number. Please note that doing this will not guarantee you an earlier ceremony - as always, allocation for ceremonies is based on your approval date.
Can I do my ceremony with another person?
No. In order to maintain the integrity and fairness of the ceremony allocation process, individuals can only be linked at time of application.
Can I do my ceremony in another council or have an online ceremony?
No. The Department has ceased offering online ceremonies. Applicants for Australian citizenship must attend a citizenship ceremony in their local council area. Please do not to contact the Department or your local council about your ceremony, as the Department will write to you with details of your ceremony when one has been arranged for you.
For further assistance, please contact If you have any questions about your application, contact the Department of Home Affairs or phone the Citizenship Information Line on 131 880.
Source: Ceremonies NSW, the Department of Home Affairs