Section 24 of the Cook Islands Immigration Act 2021 requires that Cook Islanders prove their status as a Cook Islander by descent and have their passports endorsed.
Cook Islands status is a stamp in your passport to recognise that you are a Cook Islander by descent. The Cook Islands does not issue passports and the passport that you currently hold is citizenship for that country. This means that a Cook Islander holding a New Zealand passport is a New Zealand citizen.
Cook Islanders generally will refer to their birthplace as adequate evidence of Cook Islands heritage. However non Cook Islanders are also born in the Cook Islands, so it is insufficient to rely on evidence of birth place alone.
All Cook Islanders have continuing rights to travel in and out of the Cook Islands and reside at will, it is ideal that all Cook Islanders seek to have their status recognised and apply to have the Cook Islands status stamp endorsed in their passport.