New Zealand - flag New Zealand - Passport & Nationality - British Nationality for a New Zealander

Both New Zealand and the United Kingdom allow Dual Nationality. This means that a person can hold nationality (and the passport) of both countries.

As a New Zealander, you could be eligible for BRITISH NATIONALITY in the following circumstances:

  • You were BORN IN THE UK* (or Northern Ireland) before 1983. You will have been classified as British Otherwise than by Descent, can hold a British Passport, and can pass British Nationality to your children, irrespective of where these children are born. Read more about British Nationality by Birth.
  • You have a PARENT* (a father or mother) who was Naturalised in the UK before your birth, or who was born in the UK (or Northern Ireland) before 1983. Your parent will have been classified as British Otherwise than by Descent, hold a British Passport, and they can pass British Nationality to their children, irrespective of where these children are born. Read more about British Nationality by Descent.

* It gets more complicated if:

As a New Zealand citizen, you are eligible for the following WORKING VISAS in the UK:

  • UK Work Permit, if you have a job offer in the UK or specific skills that are in demand in the UK.


How do I find out if I have a claim to British Nationality?

We suggest following our 4 STEP PROCESS, designed to simplify the complex laws of British nationality and to avoid unnecessary and expensive application fees, to find your answer:

Step 1: Determine whether you have a Standard Route (birth in the UK before 1983, or a parent born in the UK before 1983)
Step 2: If not, complete our free Nationality Assessment
Step 3: Order a free Status Trace
Step 4: Conduct a Citizenship Report




  • Up until 31.12.1948, New Zealand (and all its islands, dependencies, mandated and trust territories) were within the British Crown Dominions.
  • From 01.01.1949, New Zealand was an independent Commonwealth country.
  • The Cook Islands and Niue were associated states from 1965 and 1974 respectively.


  • From 17.12.1920 until 12.12.1945, Western Samoa (as it was then know) was a New Zealand Mandated Territory in which the Crown exercised extra-territorial jurisdiction.
  • From 13.12.1946 until 31.12.1961, it was a New Zealand Trust Territory in which the Crown exercised extra-territorial jurisdiction.
  • Between 01.01.1962 and 30.01.1980, it was a foreign country.
  • From 01.01.1983 until the present day, it is an independent Commonwealth country.

Ask Philip Gamble whether you (or your children) have a claim to British nationality.

Learn more about these routes to British Nationality: is a specialist UK Nationality and British Citizenship site offering an online search and assessment. Claims to hold a British Passport can be complex and the site offers a quick, simple search to give you the answers. While many people qualify for the UK Ancestry Visa based on holding a Commonwealth passport with a UK born grandmother or grandfather, we have found that if you have a grandparent born in the UK, or if your mother is British or your father is British, then there are several scenarios where you can claim British Nationality and the right to hold a British Passport. This stems from Britain’s collection of British Colonies, British Protectorates and British Protected States in the middle of last century and the Nationality rules concerning what are now the countries of the Commonwealth. is a subsidiary of Sable International.

Sable International offers a range of services relating to UK and Australian immigration. For over 20 years, we have been helping people with their UK and Australian visa applications. We assist with applications for Ancestry visas, spouse visas, work visas, Tier 1 visas, UK working holiday visas, UK dependant visas, Tier 4 visas, UK Visitor visas, sponsorship visas or UK permanent residency or indefinite leave to remain. We also specialise in UK visa extensions. If you’ve overstayed your visa, our Overstayer Status Trace service can assist to regularise your visa status.