Parent Visas


PARENT VISAS*

(Reflects law as at 1 July 2012)

 

Parents of an Australian citizen, permanent resident, or eligible New Zealand citizen may apply to migrate to Australia under two different categories of Parent visas. These are:

 

  • Parent, or
  • Contributory parent.

(‘Parent visas’)

 

A limit is placed on the number of Parent visas granted in each financial year. As a result, there are large numbers of parents who satisfy the Parent visa requirements who must wait in a lengthy queue before their visa is granted. This waiting time is significantly less for the Contributory Parent visa, however these visas are extremely expensive (see below).

 

Criteria common to all subclasses of Parent visas

 

To be eligible for a Parent visa, a parent must satisfy certain criteria, detailed below.

 

1. Meeting the balance of family test

 

All applicants must meet the balance of family test before a Parent visa will be granted. This test means that an applicant must have:

 

  • at least half of their children lawfully and permanently resident in Australia (this includes eligible New Zealand citizens who are usually resident in Australia); or
  • more children permanently resident in Australia (this includes eligible New Zealand citizens who are usually resident in Australia) than in any other single county.

 

To determine whether an applicant meets the balance of family test the Department of Immigration (“the Department”) policy indicates that the Department will count all natural, adopted and step-children of:

 

  • the applicant
  • the applicant’s current partner (including de facto partner)

 

If the Parent visa application was lodged on or after 1 July 2011, children (natural, step or adopted) from a relationship other than the applicant’s current relationship will not count.

 

Also, the Department will not count:

 

  • children who have been removed from their parent’s legal custody;
  • children resident in a refugee camp operated by the UNHCR;
  • children who suffer persecution or human rights abuses and cannot be reunited with their parents in another country.

 

Children whose whereabouts are unknown are presumed to be in the child’s last known usual country of residence.  Children who are not Australian citizen, permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen will be taken to be resident overseas, either in the child’s current or last overseas resident country, or the child’s country of nationality if the child no longer has a right of return to that overseas country of usual residence.

 

2. Sponsorship

 

Any person seeking a Parent Visa will be required to have a sponsor. The sponsor will usually be either:

 

  • the applicant’s child (including natural, adopted or step-children) – unless the child is under 18 (see below), or
  • the spouse of an applicant’s child who is living with the applicant’s child.

 

Generally, the sponsor must:

 

  • be an Australian Citizen, permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen,
  • be over 18 years of age; and
  • be settled in Australia – generally this means that the sponsor will need to have been lawfully resident in Australia for a period of 2 years (including temporary residence period) unless there are compelling and compassionate reasons to waive this requirement.

 

If an applicant’s child is under 18 years, another person who is an Australian citizen, permanent resident, or eligible New Zealand citizen and is connected to that child, may be the sponsor. In such cases, the following individuals will be considered appropriate sponsors:

 

  • a child’s spouse;
  • a relative (ie a spouse, de-facto spouse, child, adopted child, step-child, parent, step-parent, sibling, step-sibling, grandparent, grandchild, aunt, uncle, niece or nephew, or a step-grandparent, step-grandchild, step-aunt, step-uncle, step-niece or step-nephew) or guardian of a child;
  • a relative or guardian of a child’s spouse; or
  • a community organisation.

 

3. Assurance of support (‘AOS’)

 

All Parent visa applicants must obtain an AOS before the visa can be granted.

 

An AOS is a legal commitment by a person (‘assurer”) to provide financial support to the applicant and repay to the government the amount of any welfare payments made to the applicant within either:

 

  • the first 2 years after the applicant enters Australia, if they have applied for one of the Parent Category visas; or
  • the first 10 years after the applicant enters Australia, if they have applied for one of the Contributory Parent Category visas (temporary or permanent residence).

 

An eligible assurer must:

 

  • be an adult (i.e. over 18 years of age) or an organisation with prescribed ties to Australia (see IARC’s Assurance of support information sheet);
  • be usually resident in Australia (prescribed rules apply to organisations);
  • meet prescribed income requirements (see IARC’s Assurance of support information sheet); and
  • be able to provide a notice of assessment issued by the Australian Taxation Commissioner for the most recent financial year.

 

All intending Parent visa applicants and sponsors should read IARC’s Assurance of support information sheet.

 

4. Security bond associated with an AOS

 

The assurer must also lodge a security bond with the Commonwealth Bank of Australia. The amount of the bond varies depending whether a person or an organisation is providing the AOS. For a Parent visa the bond payable by a person is $5,000 for the primary applicant and $2,000 for each secondary applicant. If an organisation is providing the AOS, the bond is $10,000.

 

For a Contributory Parent visa the bond payable by a person is $10,000 for the primary applicant and $4,000 for each secondary applicant. If an organisation is providing the AOS, the bond payable is $20,000.

 

The bond is refundable after 2 years for the Parent visa and 10 years for the Contributory Parent visa.  If any claimable payments (see IARC’s Assurance of support information sheet) are made to the visa holders during the two or ten year period (as applicable) it may be deducted from the bond or claimed back from the AOS.

 

For further information on AOSs please refer to IARC’s Assurance of support information sheet.

 

4. Health test

 

All Parent visa applicants must undergo a medical assessment and pass a health test. For further details in relation to this please refer to the IARC’s Health information sheet. The strict, non-waivable health criterion (4005) applies to all Parent visas. Some exceptions apply to holders of Substituted 676 visas (see ‘Substituted 676 visa holders’ below).

 

5. Character test

 

All Parent visa applicants must pass the character test, including submitting appropriate police clearance certificates. For further details in relation to this please refer to the IARC’s Character information sheet available at the IARC website (see below).

 

Limited number of Parent visas

 

There are a limited number of visas granted under the Parent visa category each year. For example, in 2011-12, a total of 8500 Parent visa places were made available. 2000 of those places were allocated to the general Parent visas, while 6500 were allocated to the Contributory Parent visa category. Once the limit has been reached no further visas will be granted that financial year. All applicants are placed in a queue according to the date on which an applicant meets the “criteria to be satisfied at the time of application”. Once additional places become available applications will be assessed further by the Department. Finally, applicants waiting in the queue who meet all the criteria for the grant of the visa will have their visas granted in order of the queue date allocated. Currently, applicants can expect to wait in the queue for a long period of time (up to 15 years for ordinary Parent visas, and around 18 months for the Contributory Parent visas) before their visas are granted.

 

Queue calculator – the Department of Immigration has an online queue calculator which allows visa applicants who have been placed in the queue to identify how many people are ahead of them in the queue. This then allows a visa applicant to estimate the time until the visa application is fully processed. (see https://www.ecom.immi.gov.au/qcalc/QDateAnswer.do)

 

Parent visa subclasses

 

(Note: Intending visa applicants should also explore whether they are eligible for an Aged Dependent Relative visa. Further information about this visa is available in IARC’s Aged dependent relatives information sheet).

 

Within the Parent category there are two visa subclasses:

 

  • Parent (Migrant) - Subclass 103, and
  • Aged Parent (Residence) - Subclass 804.

(for Contributory Parent category see below)

 

Parent (Migrant) Subclass 103

 

Subclass 103 may be lodged while the applicant is still in Australia (if the applicant does not have a condition 8503 on their last visa and is not otherwise prohibited from applying), however, the applicant will not be entitled to a Bridging visa while the application is processed, and must be outside Australia at the time the visa is granted.

 

Aged Parent (Residence) Subclass 804

 

Subclass 804 visas are for applicants in Australia. In order to qualify you must be:

 

  • 65 years of age if you are a male applicant, and
  • of an age eligible to receive the age pension in Australia if you are a female applicant. This will depend on your date of birth (see table below) and ranges between 60 and 65 years of age.

 

Date of birth of woman

Qualifying age for woman

1 Jan 1946 – 30 Jun 1947

64

1 Jul 1947 – 31 Dec 1948

64.5

1 Jan 1949 onwards

65

 

What is a Contributory Parent visa?

 

A Contributory Parent visa is a visa which requires a large financial contribution on behalf of the applicant (this includes large application fees as well as the provision of an assurance of support requiring payment of a large bond).

 

What are the types of the Contributory Parent visa?

 

There are four different types of Contributory Parent visas:

 

  • Contributory Parent (Migrant) Subclass 143 (permanent visa)
  • Contributory Parent (Temporary) Subclass 173 (temporary visa)
  • Contributory Aged Parent (Residence) Subclass 864 (permanent visa)
  • Contributory Aged Parent (Temporary) Subclass 884 (temporary visa)

 

The difference between these subclasses is essentially that some are temporary and some are permanent, some are for ‘aged’ parents, and some are for parents who are not aged. The benefit of the temporary visas is that payment of the large visa application charges, AOS and bond can be staggered between the time of application for the temporary visa, to the time just prior to grant of the permanent visa.

Text Box: WARNING: A person who holds or held a temporary Contributory Parent / Contributory Aged Parent visa since last entering Australia is restricted by law from applying for any other visa other than the corresponding permanent Contributory Parent visa, a Medical Treatment visa or a Protection visa while they remain in Australia.

 

 

 

 

Contributory Parent (Migrant) Subclass 143

 

Subclass 143 visa applications may be lodged while the applicant is still in Australia (if the applicant does not have a condition 8503 on their last visa and is not otherwise prohibited from applying), however, unless the applicant is the holder of a subclass 173 visa they will not be entitled to a Bridging visa while the application is processed, and must be outside Australia at the time the visa is granted.

 

This visa will be granted if you choose to pay the entire second instalment in one payment. Once granted the visa, the visa holder becomes a permanent resident.

 

Contributory Parent (Temporary) Subclass 173

 

Subclass 173 visa applications may be lodged while the applicant is still in Australia (if the applicant does not have a condition 8503 on their last visa and is not otherwise prohibited from applying), however, the applicant will not be entitled to a Bridging visa while the application is processed, and must be outside Australia at the time the visa is granted.

 

This is a temporary two year visa. It will be granted to you if you choose to pay 60% of the second instalment as a first payment, followed by the remaining 40% after two years (at which time you will be granted a Subclass 143 visa which gives you permanent residence).

 

Contributory Aged Parent (Residence) Subclass 864

 

Subclass 864 visas are for applicants in Australia. In order to qualify you must be:

 

  • 65 years of age, in the case of male applicants, and
  • of an age who is eligible to receive the age pension in Australia, in the case of female applicants – this will depend on the date of birth of the woman and ranges between 60 and 65 years of age (see table above).

 

This visa will be granted if you choose to pay the entire second instalment in one payment. Once granted the visa, the visa holder becomes a permanent resident.

 

Contributory Aged Parent (Temporary) Subclass 884

 

Subclass 884 visas are for applicants in Australia. In order to qualify you must be:

 

  • 65 years of age, in the case of male applicants, and
  • of an age who is eligible to receive the age pension in Australia, in the case of female applicants – this will depend on the date of birth of the woman and ranges between 60 and 65 years of age (see table above).

 

This is a temporary two year visa. It will be granted to you if you choose to pay 60% of the second instalment as a first payment, followed by the remaining 40% after two years (at which time you will be granted a Subclass 864 visa which gives you permanent residence).

Text Box: WARNING: A person granted a Contributory Parent visa cannot sponsor their partner or fiancé who was their partner before the grant of their Contributory Parent visa for 5 years from the time of the grant of their Contributory Parent visa.

 

 

What are the costs involved?

 

Parent visa – applications outside Australia (Subclass 103)

 

Application fee: $2,060

Second instalment: $1,795 per applicant

AOS Security bond: $5,000 + $2,000 for second applicant

Plus costs for medical and character checks (approx $400 per person).

 

Aged Parent visa – applications inside Australia (Subclass 804)

 

Application fee: $3,060

Second instalment: $1,795 per applicant

AOS Security bond: $5,000 + $2,000 for second applicant

Plus costs for medical and character checks (approx. $400 per person).

 

Contributory Parent visa – application outside Australia

 

(Subclass 143)

Application fee: $2,060

Second instalment: $42,220 per adult applicant ($1,825 per juvenile applicant)

AOS Security bond: $10,000 + $4,000 for second applicant

Plus costs for medical and character checks (approx. $400 per person).

 

OR

 

(Subclass 173 followed by 143)

Application fee: $2,060

Second instalment: $25,330 per adult applicant ($1,835 per juvenile applicant) plus

$280 application fee + $16,885 per adult applicant after 2 years to get Subclass 143 (nil per juvenile applicant)

AOS Security bond: $10,000 + $4,000 for second applicant

Plus costs for medical and character checks (approx. $400 per person).

 

Contributory Aged Parent visa – application inside Australia

 

(Subclass 864)

Application fee: $3,060

Second instalment: $42,220 per adult applicant ($1,825 per juvenile applicant)

AOS Security bond: $10,000 + $4,000 for second applicant

Plus costs for medical and character checks (approx. $400 per person).

 

OR

 

(Subclass 884 followed by 864)

Application fee: $3,060

Second instalment: $25,330 per adult applicant ($1,825 per juvenile applicant) plus

$280 application fee + $16,885 per adult applicant after 2 years to get Subclass 884 (nil per juvenile applicant)

AOS Security bond: $10,000 + $4,000 for second applicant

Plus costs for medical and character checks (approx. $400 per person).

 

What evidence do I need?

 

You will need to include the following types of evidence in support of your application:

 

  • child/parent relationship – for example birth certificates of the child and parents, marriage certificate of the parents
  • evidence of the sponsor’s permanent residence, Australian citizenship or status as an eligible New Zealand citizen
  • a certified copy of each applicant’s passport or travel document
  • 4 passport photographs of each applicant
  • certified copies of all birth certificates of all the applicant’s children
  • certified copies of the birth certificates of all applicants
  • the marriage certificate of anyone included in the application who is married
  • the divorce certificate or death certificate of anyone included in the application who is divorced or widowed
  • if anyone included in the application has changed their name, a certified copy of the evidence of name change
  • evidence of where all your children reside (e.g. a passport, residence or citizenship certificate)
  • certified copies of the adoption papers for any child included in the application who is adopted
  • if you have served in the armed forces, certified copies of military service record or discharge papers, and
  • certified copies of documents to verify custody and access arrangements for children under 18 years old unless both parents of the child are included in the application.

 

Certified copies, statutory declarations and translations

 

Any photocopies of documents to be included with the application must be certified[1] by a solicitor/Justice of the Peace/bank manager etc). People who make a statutory declaration for you must attach a certified copy of the front page of their passport, permanent resident’s visa, Australian citizenship certificate or birth certificate if the person making the statutory declaration was born in Australia. The statutory declaration must be signed in front of a solicitor, Justice of the Peace or bank manager.

 

Any documents which are not in English should be translated by an accredited translator. Both the translation and a certified copy of the un-translated original should be submitted with the application. For accredited translators call either the Community Relations Commission on 1300 651 500 or the Translating and Interpreting Service on 131 450.

 

What if I want to make another parent application?

 

If you have already made a parent application but want to make a different application, then you must withdraw any existing parent application that has not yet been decided. You do this by completing the relevant section of form 47PA when making the new Parent visa application.

 

The application fee will not be refunded. However, if you lodged an application for a Parent visa before 27 June 2003 or an Aged Parent visa before 1 July 2003 and are now applying for a Contributory Parent visa there is no initial application fee for the Contributory Parent visa application.

 

Substituted 676 visa holders

 

A ‘Substituted 676 visa’ is a Tourist subclass 676 visa that has been granted by the Minister as a result of a request for Ministerial intervention. Substituted 676 visa holders may apply for any visa, but are assessed against special eligibility criteria for the following visas only:

 

  • Contributory Parent subclass 143;
  • Aged Parent subclass 804;
  • Contributory Aged Parent subclass 884; and
  • Contributory Aged Parent subclass 864.

 

Substituted 676 visa holders who apply for any of these visas must satisfy the same eligibility criteria as any other applicant, with the following exceptions:

 

  • they have access to reduced visa application charges;
  • they do not have to be ‘aged’ to qualify for an ‘aged’ Parent visa;
  • they do not have to satisfy the ‘balance of family’ test;
  • instead of PIC 4005 (non-waivable health) they have to satisfy PIC 4007 (waivable health), as do members of their family unit; and
  • they do not have to meet PIC 4004 (debts to the Commonwealth), meaning that they can be granted the visa even if payment or reasonable arrangements to pay any debts to the Commonwealth have not been made.

 

Substituted 676 visa holders must, however, meet all other criteria, including having an appropriate sponsor over the age of 18 and providing an AOS.

Distinguishing a Substituted 676 visa from a Tourist subclass 676 visa – The visa label for a Substituted 676 visa is indistinguishable from an ordinary Tourist subclass 676, although a Substituted 676 will never have a no further stay condition 8503 on it. Accordingly, if a subclass 676 visa has a condition 8503 on it, it is not a Substituted 676. However, an ordinary Tourist subclass 676 visa may also be issued without an 8503 condition. Therefore it is important for advisers to view any correspondence between the visa holder and the Department, and to identify the visa holder’s immigration history, in order to ascertain whether the visa is a Substituted 676 and therefore whether the visa holder can access the special eligibility criteria for the visas listed above.

Visa application process

Step 1        All applicant parents need to complete Form 47PA Application for migration by a parent unless they already hold a Contributory Parent (temporary) visa. These temporary visa holders need to complete Form 47PT Application for migration to Australia by a contributing parent (temporary) or contributory aged parent (temporary) visa. Applicants aged 18 years or older applying as a dependent family member must also complete Form 47A Details of child or other dependent family member aged 18 years or older.

Step 2        Sponsors must complete Form 40 Sponsorship for migration to Australia.

Step 3        Attach the evidence and documents mentioned above.

Step 4        Attach a cover letter to the application form with

  • your name;
  • current address;
  • reasons for applications; and
  • list of documents attached to application. If you are waiting for any information to be included with the application say that it will be provided to the Department as soon as it is received.

Also offer to provide any further information required by the Department of Immigration.

Step 5        Keep a photocopy of all the documents you submitted to the Department of Immigration

Step 6        Lodge these forms with the application fee as follows:

  • if you are in Australia – either at your nearest Department of Immigration office or at the Perth Office Processing Centre (see addresses below). Remember to keep your receipt as it is proof that you lodged the application.
  • if you are outside Australia – either:

                                               

                            By mail to:

 

                                                            Parent Visa Centre

                                                            Locked Bag 7

                                                            Northbridge  WA  6865

                                                            AUSTRALIA

                                               

                                                or

 

                                                By courier to:

 

                                                            Parent Visa Centre

                                                            Wellington Central

                                                            Level 3

                                                            836 Wellington Street

                                                            West Perth  WA  6005

 

Remember to tell the Department of any change in your circumstances, for example if you change your address.

 

Information and copyright belong to IARC.

* IARC does not guarantee the accuracy of any information contained in this information sheet. It contains general information and is not a substitute for legal advice

[1] A certified copy is a copy containing a statement to the effect that the copy is a true copy of the original document.

 





 

 

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