Giving up Australian citizenship

The following steps are a guide to the application process to give up or renounce Australian citizenship.

Click on each step below for more information.

Step 1. Determine that you are eligible

Australian citizens aged 18 or over can apply to renounce their Australian citizenship.

Australia is a signatory to the United Nations Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness. No application to renounce Australian citizenship will be approved unless there is evidence that the applicant is a citizen of another country, or on renunciation will acquire the citizenship of another country.

If the applicant is the responsible parent of a child, consideration may be given to revoking the citizenship of any children under the age of 18 years unless:

  • another responsible parent is still an Australian citizen, or
  • this would render the child stateless.

Children

An application to renounce a child's Australian citizenship can only be made if the child was  born or is ordinarily resident in a foreign country and is not entitled, under the law of that country, to acquire the nationality or citizenship of that country because the child is an  Australian citizen.

An application for a child under 16 years of age must be made by a responsible parent.

Step 2. Gather your original documents

Use this checklist as a guide to the original documents usually required.

Step 3. Copy and certify your documents

Have your documents copied and certified and your identity declaration and photograph signed.

You must copy your original documents and have them certified by an Australian citizen from the designated list of occupations.

Applicants outside Australia

If you are overseas when applying, you can have your original documents certified by a citizen of your country of residence who is employed in one of the designated list of occupations.

Step 4. Complete and lodge your application

Once your documents are copied and certified, you will need to complete all parts of the application form.

When completed, send your application together with your certified documents, photograph and fee to the Overseas Citizenship Unit (OCU) at the department's Canberra Office. The OCU processes applications lodged in or from outside of Australia. Do not post original documents with your application.

More information on how to complete your application form is available.

The Client Service Charter provides details on the service standard for processing an application to resume Australian citizenship. If you do not receive notification within the time given in the charter you can contact the Citizenship Information Line on 131 880, for applications lodged in Australia. If you have lodged your application from outside Australia, you can contact your nearest Immigration Office outside Australia.

Last modified Thursday 13 February 2014