Citizenship Ceremony (Australian Citizenship)

‚ÄčA citizenship ceremony is where you make the Australian citizenship pledge. For most people, this is the final step in the journey to becoming an Australian. The ceremony is usually held within 6 months of hearing about your approval. 

Overview

You will be invited to attend your ceremony about 4 weeks before the event. You will receive a phone call and a letter of invitation from  us. The invitation shows the date, time and place of the ceremony. You cannot choose where and when to attend your ceremony as the Shire of Narrogin pre-arranges the ceremonies.

Who should attend

You need to attend a citizenship ceremony if you:

  • were 16 years or more when you applied
  • do not have a permanent and enduring incapacity

You will not become an Australian citizen until you have attended your ceremony and made the pledge.

If you do not attend a ceremony within 12 months of your approval, the Department can review and cancel your approval.

Not required to attend

You may not be required to attend a citizenship ceremony and make the pledge if you:

  • are a child under 16 years
  • are granted Australian citizenship by descent or adoption
  • are resuming your Australian citizenship
  • have a permanent or enduring physical or mental incapacity
  • were born in Papua before 16 September 1975 to an Australian citizen
  • were born to a former Australian citizen
  • were stateless when born in Australia

Any child under 16 who is included on your application will become a citizen at the same time as you.

Children under 16 do not have to attend the ceremony and make the pledge, but they are welcome to do so.

Unable to attend

If you cannot attend your citizenship ceremony, follow the instructions in your invitation letter.

If you miss your ceremony, you will receive another invitation from us. You do not need to contact us.

Guests

We encourage you to celebrate this day with your family and friends. Depending on the circumstances and number of people participating, your guests might have to sit apart from you during the ceremony. Make sure any children are well supervised.

What happens on the day

You should allow approximately half an hour for a citizenship ceremony. Arrive about 10 minutes before the ceremony so you can register with your ID and settle into your seat. seat. 

Most ceremonies follow a similar order of proceedings.

After you are seated, there will be:

  • a formal introduction
  • speeches
  • the pledge
  • National Anthem

The presiding officer, usually the Shire President, will ask you to repeat the Australian citizenship pledge out loud. You will become an Australian citizen after you make the pledge.

You will say the version of pledge that you chose on your application.

The ceremony may end with light refreshments, and you may be given a small gift.

Citizenship certificate

After you have made the pledge, you should receive your citizenship certificate.

If your certificate is not ready at the ceremony, it will be posted to you. You will still become a citizen when you make the pledge.

Your citizenship certificate is issued in the name you gave on your application form. This was your legal name at the time your citizenship was approved by the Department.

Your citizenship certificate is an important legal document. You will need it should you apply for an Australian passport. You may need it to apply for a job or join the Australian Defence Force.

It is an offence to deface or alter your citizenship certificate by:

  • writing on it
  • changing any details on it

Tell the Department if you lose your certificate, or it is stolen.

Taking photographs

The Shire may take photographs and film the ceremony. Media may attend too.

If we photograph you for promotional purposes, we will ask you for permission to use the images.

Your family and friends can take photographs of you during and after the ceremony. They must not disrupt other participants and their guests.

What to bring to the ceremony

You need to bring your invitation to the ceremony and one form of photo identification:

  • driver's licence
  • passport, or
  • an official document with a photograph

If you do not have photo identification, then bring at least 3 documents showing your name, address and signature:

  • bank statements
  • utility bills, or
  • credit card statements

If you are under 16, you do not need to bring photo identification.

If you want to make the Australian citizenship pledge on a holy book, bring a book with you to the ceremony. 

What to wear

The ceremony is an important event where you make a commitment to Australia. You and your guests should be dressed in formal or smart casual clothing, and groomed to reflect its significance. Some people like to wear the traditional dress of their country of origin.

Assistance for special needs

If you have any special needs, tell us at your citizenship appointment. Or call the Immigration and Citizenship's Global Service Centre during business hours. You can also inform your state or territory visa and citizenship office in person or by post.

Overseas travel before the ceremony

Use your current passport if you need to travel before the ceremony.

Before you leave, get a visa that allows you to re-enter Australia to attend your ceremony. If the travel conditions on your permanent visa have expired or are about to expire, you will need to apply for a Resident Return Visa.

Make sure any travel does not affect your ability to attend the ceremony. Or it will delay you in becoming an Australian citizen.

If you plan to travel outside overseas before your ceremony, tell us at your citizenship appointment. Or call the  Immigration and Citizenship's Global Service Centre.

After making the pledge, you will be eligible to apply for an Australian passport. Wait at least 10 days before you apply online with the Australian Passport Office. This is how long it might take for your citizenship details to be recorded in the system.