Parent Immigration Visas to Australia

By 23 May 2018Immigration

If you are an Australian citizen or a settled Australian permanent resident, you may already have faced a necessity to bring your non-resident parents from overseas to live with you in Australia.

This article explains the major parent visa options, which may be available to your parents, depending on their circumstances and future plans and may assist you in choosing the most suitable visa for them.

Major Criteria

To be eligible for a parent visa, your parent must have either equal or more children residing in Australia than in any other country.

Also, all parent visas require sponsorship by a settled Australian permanent resident or by Australian citizen, who has sufficient income and satisfies the sponsorship criteria. Normally, parent visa applicants are sponsored by their
Australian child.

The sponsor is generally required to provide an Assurance of Support and pay the Assurance of Support bond.

An Assurance of Support is a legal commitment by a person to repay to the Australian Government certain recoverable social security payments made by Centrelink to those covered by the assurance.

Non-contributory vs Contributory Parent Visas

Australian immigration law provides for two parent visa categories: non-contributory and contributory.

Although they have similar criteria to be satisfied by parents and their Australian sponsors, the major distinction between them is the amount of visa application charge.

Non-contributory parent visas (Subclasses 804 and 103) are much cheaper to apply for. For example, visa application charge for Subclass 103 visa does not exceed AUD 7,985 for a couple.

However, the waiting time for non-contributory visas currently ranges between 15 and 30 years depending on the existing queue, which makes that type of visas unreasonable for the applicant to be considered.

Processing of a contributory parent visa is much quicker than processing of non-contributory parent visa and may take approximately 3 years from the date of application.

That is why applicants generally prefer the much quicker, but, at the same time, more expensive contributory parent visa option.

Contributory Parent Visas

Contributory Parent Visas are expensive to apply for. That is because the visa application charges for contributory parent visas may reach $92.240 for a couple.

There are two types of contributory parent visas: temporary (Subclasses 884 and 173) and permanent (Subclasses 864 and 143).

There are also two options of applying for those visas: from overseas (for Subclass 173 or 143) or from Australia (for Subclass 884 or 864).

Please, however, note, that there are certain conditions, which the applicant must satisfy to be able to apply for a parent visa from Australia.

Firstly, your parent must be of a certain age (male applicants must be older than 65 years of age and the minimum required age of a female applicant depends on the year of her birth, but, in any case, is not under 64).

Secondly, the visa that your parent holds at the time of application must not have conditions restricting their further visa application or further stay in Australia.

Temporary Parent Visas

Subclass 173 (if applying from overseas) or Subclass 884 (if applying from Australia) are temporary visas. They allow their holders to live and travel to and from Australia for the period of 2 years. They also allow their holders to apply for a further permanent parent visa while in Australia. Visa application charges for temporary visas are much lower than for permanent contributory parent visas. For example, the first instalment of visa application charge for Subclass 173 visa which is payable at the time of visa application, is currently AUD 2,540 for the main applicant and AUD 1,270 for the spouse. The second instalment, which is payable before the visa grant is currently AUD 29,130 for each applicant (the main applicant and the spouse).

The Assurance of Support bond is not required by law for a temporary visa. However, it may be requested in certain circumstances at the discretion of a case officer.

In most instances, applicants consider temporary parent visas as their pathway to a permanent visa. Such two-step pathway to permanent immigration allows visa applicants to pay the total amount of visa application charges leading to the grant of a permanent visa gradually, thus decreasing their financial burden.

However, since visa application charges are being increased annually, your parent may end up with paying a higher amount of visa application charge as a result of that two-step pathway comparing to those applicants who directly apply for a permanent parent visa.

Permanent Parent Visas

Subclass 143 (if applying from overseas) or Subclass 864 (if applying from Australia) are permanent visas which allow their holders to live and travel to and from Australia for the period of 5 years.

If your parent is willing to apply for a permanent visa directly, bypassing a temporary visa option, they will need to pay high visa application charge. For example, the first instalment for Subclass 143 visa, which is payable at the time of visa application, is currently AUD 3,770 for the main applicant and AUD 1,270 for the spouse. The second instalment, which is payable before the visa grant is currently AUD 43,600 for each applicant (the main applicant and the spouse).

In addition, the sponsor will also be required to pay the Assurance of Support bond which is currently AUD 10,000 for one applicant or AUD 14,000 for a couple.

If, however, the applicant is the holder of a temporary parent visa (e.g., Subclass 173) at the time of application, then the amount of visa application charge, which the applicant will need to pay is much lower: the first instalment is currently AUD 330 for the main applicant and AUD 170 for the spouse; the second instalment is currently AUD 19,420 for each applicant (the main applicant and the spouse).

However, as indicated above, if the applicant applies for Subclass 173 first, and then, upon the expiry of 2 years, applies for Subclass 143 visa, they may end up paying higher amount of visa application charges comparing to those applicants who apply for Subclass 143 visa directly, bypassing the temporary visa.

Our Services

If you would like to receive our advice on the most suitable visa option for your parent, we will be pleased to assist you in that.

Our experienced Sydney immigration lawyers in Pavuk Legal can, as well, provide you with extensive advice on other matters, including acquiring of property by your parents, making a will or other legal matters.

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