Australia's rules mean its simple for New Zealanders to live and work here

Date: Aug 29, 2012

When it comes to living and working in Australia, New Zealanders have an easier time than visitors from any other country in the world.

Thanks to the 1973 Trans-Tasman Travel Arrangement, both Australians and Kiwis can go into each other’s countries and work or stay indefinitely.

Provided they pass health and character tests, which basically means if they aren’t carrying an infectious disease and they aren’t a dangerous criminal, they’re provided with an automatic visa upon arrival.

The ease with which both countries allow workers to operate in each other’s countries extends to the pension system. In 2001, an arrangement was made that allowed New Zealanders and Australians to access pension entitlements in both countries.

When it comes to accessing social security payments, you may want to speak to a qualified immigration lawyer as your eligibility will vary depending on how long you have been resident and a number of other factors.

A child born in Australia to citizens of New Zealand is not an Australian citizen unless its parents are permanent residents, whereas before February 2001, the special category visa (SCV) which was automatically provided upon arrival meant that a child born in Australia  to Kiwi parents, was born an Australian citizen.

New Zealanders born in Australia are entitled to both passports and vice versa. However, Australia’s immigration authorities recommend using the Australian passport when entering Australia from overseas.

With lower unemployment and higher average wages, Australia is a popular destination for New Zealanders, particularly young graduates looking for work. One Federal Labor MP this week called for cap, warning that immigration from New Zealand could reach 100,000 people a year by 2017.

Kelvin Thomson MP told News Limited that he believes a cap of 30,000 to 40,000 is needed in order to prevent a “big Australia”.