Australian Embassy

Citizenship by Descent

Back to Visas and Citizenship        English I 中文   




Australian citizenship by descent may be acquired by a person born outside Australia who is the natural child of an Australian citizen parent.

A person becomes a citizen on the date they are registered as a citizen by the Department of Home Affairs (HA). A certificate of Australian citizenship is issued at the time of registration.

Any person who was born outside Australia on or after 26 January 1949 may make an application to be registered as an Australian citizen by descent if at least one natural parent was an Australian citizen at the time of their birth. Applicants aged 18 years and over must satisfy the Minister that they are of good character.

If the Australian parent acquired Australian citizenship by descent, that parent must have been lawfully present in Australia for a period or periods totalling at least 2 years at some time in their life.


Applying for Australian citizenship by descent

The following checklist is designed to assist you in preparing and submitting your application. See: Checklist for Citizenship by Descent (including application forms)

Please note:

  • The standard processing time for applications for Australian citizenship by descent lodged in China and Mongolia can be found at :
  • The document checklist is provided as a guide only. We may request further information and/or documents during the processing of your application.
  • Any document in a language other than English must be accompanied by an English translation. A translator outside Australia does not need to be accredited but they must endorse the translation with their full name, address, telephone number and details of their qualifications and experience in the language being translated.
  • We reserve the right to verify any documents lodged with your application with a document issuing authority, a relevant third party, or via document examination techniques. Applications containing false or misleading information are likely to be refused.
  • Please advise us of any changes to the information you have provided with your application as soon as you are able.


Where your application will be processed

A Department of Home Affairs Office in Australia is responsible for processing  Citizenship by Descent applications for people living in China and Mongolia. 

Applying online 

If you are in China or Mongolia and wish to apply for Australian citizenship by descent online, please visit

If you do not already have one, you will need to first create an ImmiAccount.

When completing the online form, please ensure you select the correct Visa Office for your catchment area (as listed above). If you select the incorrect office, your application will be transferred to the correct office and this may delay processing.

Please ensure that you prepare all required supporting documents (see checklist), as well as Form 1195 Identity Declaration before you commence an online application.

If you need to submit further documents during processing of the application, you should do this through your ImmiAccount.

Please ensure that in all cases you submit colour scans of the original documents (not certified or notarised copies) together with English translations at the time of application. 

All supporting documents should be a clear, high quality scan (at least 300 dpi resolution, up to 2MB in size). If you attach low quality scanned documents, processing of your application may be delayed.

If you have any enquiries or issues regarding your ImmiAccount or online application, you can request help using the ImmiAccount Technical Support Form
Further support for using ImmiAccount can be found at the following website:


Applying in Person

If you wish to lodge your application for Australian citizenship by descent in person, please note the following arrangements by Visa Office:

Australian Visa Application Centres (AVACs) in China - Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Chengdu

Please note that all the AVACs are currently closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  

If you live in China and wish to lodge your application for Australian citizenship by descent in person, you should apply at an Australian Visa Application Centre (AVAC) in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou or Chengdu.  An AVAC Service Fee applies.

Please check that your nearest AVAC is open before attending in person.

Australian Visa Application Centre (AVAC) in Ulaanbaatar

If you live in Mongolia and wish to lodge your application for Australian citizenship by descent in person, you should apply at the Australian Visa Application Centre (AVAC) in Ulaanbaatar. An AVAC Service Fee applies.


Further Information

For more information on Australian citizenship, please visit the citizenship website at



The Visa Offices at Australian missions are not responsible for issuing Australian passports to Australian citizens. If you are an Australian citizen and wish to apply for an Australian passport, please refer to the Services for Australians section on this website. 


Back to Visas and Citizenship 


Page Last Updated 24 March 2021