The new temporary Parent visa update

The Australian government announced a discussion paper in September 2016, with details to be finalised on the implementation of a new temporary sponsored Parent visa to commence in late 2017.

Currently, parents of Australian citizens, Australian permanent residents or Eligible New Zealand citizens can apply for general Visitor visas, at a cost of $140 (offshore) or $345 (onshore), which permit short stays of between three to twelve months. But for those seeking a longer stay, the two current migration options for parents of Australians are limited. The first option is the $6,010 Non-Contributory Parent visas (Subclass 103 for offshore applicants or Subclass 804 for Parents aged 55 years and older) with a 30 year waiting period. Alternatively, there’s the $47,370 Contributory Parent visas (Subclass 143 for offshore applicants and Subclass 864 for Parents aged 55 years and older). This new temporary parent visa will not replace current visa options, but will instead be offered in addition to current arrangements.

Here’s what we know about the new visa:

  1. The new visa arrangement may commence in late 2017

The introduction of the temporary sponsored parent visa is dependent on the passage of the Migration Amendment (Family Violence and other Measures) Bill 2016 through Parliament. Subject to this Bill passing in the Spring sittings, the new visa will be introduced in late 2017.

2. Eligibility criteria for sponsors:

A sponsorship application will need to be lodged and approved prior to lodgment of the parent visa application.  In order to sponsor parents including biological, adoptive and step-parents, sponsors must:

  • Be Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident or Eligible New Zealand citizen;
  • Be at least 18 years of age;
  • Lived in Australia for at least 4 years;
  • At least meet a household income threshold;
  • Pass criminal history checks;
  • Undertake sponsorship obligations, including the acceptance of legal liability for any outstanding public health debt incurred by their sponsored parents; and
  • An Assurance of Support (financial bond) is not required for this visa.
  1. Eligibility criteria for applicants:

Applicants must be a parent of an Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident or Eligible New Zealand citizen child. The parents can be biological or adoptive parents of the sponsoring child. Step-parents can also apply, however, they must be in a current married or de facto relationship with a parent of the sponsoring child. Parents must also:

  • Undertake medical examinations and meet the health requirement;
  • Pass criminal history checks; and
  • Take out adequate health insurance for their entire period of stay.

Unlike other parent visas, the Balance of Family Test * does not apply to this new visa. Parent will not be required to demonstrate a minimum level of English language proficiency and there are no age restrictions applicable.

* The Balance of Family Test applies to all current Parent visas, whereby parents must have at least half their children (including step children) living in Australia as Australian Citizens, Australian permanent residents or eligible New Zealand citizens.

  1. It will permit a stay period of up to five years at a time

The length of stay granted may be either three or five years, and will be determined by a number of factors including:

  • The needs of the applicant and / or their sponsoring child;
  • The capacity of the applicant and / or their sponsoring child to support their stay in Australia;
  • The health and age of the visa applicant; and
  • Their previous migration history.

The visa can be applied for more than once, but the maximum period of stay is a total of 10 years.

  1. What will the visa let me do?

Parents granted this visa will be able to remain in Australia during the validity of their visa. During that time, they can enter and leave Australia as often as they like.

Parents will not be permitted to work. However, they will be able to undertake incidental, unpaid volunteer work and assist with family childcare.

Parent will be permitted to study short term courses.

Parents will not be eligible to healthcare or welfare benefits.

  1. How much will it cost?

The Department of Immigration and Border Protection’s visa application charges are:

  • AUD$5,000 for a 3 year visa
  • AUD$10,000 for a 5 year visa

The introduction of a new Parent visa will be a welcomed alternative for parents who have found they don’t meet the requirements of the current visa options. We’ll keep you updated on any new developments regarding this visa as they become available.

It would be a pleasure to assist you with your application. Should you have any queries about Parent visas or any Australian migration matter, please contact Swift Migration Australia on (07) 5526 6869 or email