Australian Parent Visas: Comprehensive guide

Many Australian PR holders who have been living in Australia for a few years face a common dilemma. After the initial years of struggle they finally have a well paying job with great work-life balance. Most are in their 30's or early 40's, are now married and have kids who go to school in Australia. However, there is one thought that worries them all the time, and that is, how to care for their ageing parents who are staying in another country.

The Australian government recognises this issue and offers a number of parent visa options that let parents of a settled Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen to live in Australia, both, temporarily and permanently.

There are 3 main types of parent visas:

  1. Contributory Parent Visas. These permanent visas are also colloquially called the “rich parent" visas because they are super expensive. There are seperate subclasses for aged and non-aged parents.
  2. Non-contributory Parent Visas. These permanent visas are less expensive but have very long processing times of up to 30 years. There are seperate subclasses for aged and non-aged parents.
  3. Temporary Contributory Parent Visas With Permanent Pathway. These temporary visas let parents stay for 2 years. Holders of these temporary parent visas can apply for the permanent contributory parent visas as a two-step process. This helps them to spread the high cost of the permanent contributory visas over a number of years. There are seperate subclasses for aged and non-aged parents.
  4. Temporary Parent Visas Without Permanent Pathway. This temporary visa lets parents stay for up to 5 years at a time for a maximum of 10 years. Holders of this temporary parent visa cannot apply for any permanent parent visas until their temporary visa expires.

All parent visas can be applied offshore and onshore. However, only the aged-parent visas can be granted in Australia. The main difference between the different types of parent visas is cost, processing time frames and where they can be granted.

Let's look at each parent visa type in more detail.

Permanent Contributory Parent Visa Options

These permanent parent visas have relatively short processing times but are very expensive.

1

Contributory Parent visa subclass 143 (granted offshore)

This permanent visa lets a parent of a settled Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident of Australia or eligible New Zealand citizen move to Australia.

You must:

  • be outside Australia when Immigration decides on your application
  • have an eligible child who is a settled Australian citizen, Permanent resident or Eligible New Zealand citizen, unless you are applying for the Retirement Pathway
  • meet the balance-of-family test, unless you are applying for the Retirement Pathway
  • have an Assurance of Support, unless you are applying for the Retirement Pathway
  • not have a Sponsored Parent (Temporary) (Subclass 870) visa when applying for this visa
47755

Visa Application Fees (AUD)

From AUD 47,755 for most applicants. Different charges may apply if applicant held or previously held other visa types.

You pay the fees in 2 instalments:

  • AUD 4,155 at the time of application, and
  • AUD 43,600 at the time of decision

There is also a fee for each family member who applies for the visa with you.

Additionally, you will need to pay an Assurance of Support (AoS) bond of AUD 10,000 for the main applicant and AUD 4,000 for the additional applicant.

You might also have to pay other costs for health checks, police certificates and biometrics.

5

Avg. Processing Time (years)

Applications for all parent visas are subject to capping and queueing.

As at May 2020, Contributory Parent visa applications that were submitted on or before April 2016 have been released for final processing.

Based on current planning levels, it is estimated that new Contributory Parent visa applications lodged that meet the criteria to be queued are likely to take approximately at least 5 years to be released for final processing.

2

Contributory Aged Parent visa subclass 864 (granted in Australia)

This permanent visa lets an aged parent of a settled Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident of Australia or eligible New Zealand citizen stay in Australia.

To apply for this visa you must:

  • be in Australia when you apply as well as when Immigration decides on your application
  • have an eligible child who is a settled Australian citizen, Permanent resident or Eligible New Zealand citizen, unless you are applying for the Retirement Pathway
  • be old enough to receive the age pension in Australia. This is usually 65 to 67 depending on your date of birth.
  • meet the balance-of-family test, unless you are applying for the Retirement Pathway
  • have an Assurance of Support, unless you are applying for the Retirement Pathway
  • not have a Sponsored Parent (Temporary) (Subclass 870) visa when applying for this visa
47755

Visa Application Fees (AUD)

From AUD 47,755 for most applicants. Different charges may apply if applicant held or previously held other visa types.

You pay the fees in 2 instalments:

  • AUD 4,155 at the time of application, and
  • AUD 43,600 at the time of decision

There is also a fee for each family member who applies for the visa with you.

Additionally, you will need to pay an Assurance of Support (AoS) bond of AUD 10,000 for the main applicant and AUD 4,000 for the additional applicant.

You might also have to pay other costs for health checks, police certificates and biometrics.

5

Avg. Processing Time (years)

Applications for all parent visas are subject to capping and queueing.

As at May 2020, Contributory Parent visa applications that were submitted on or before April 2016 have been released for final processing.

Based on current planning levels, it is estimated that new Contributory Parent visa applications lodged that meet the criteria to be queued are likely to take approximately at least 5 years to be released for final processing.

Permanent Non-Contributory Parent Visa Options

These permanent parent visas have very long processing times and may not be a good option for most ageing parents.

3

Parent visa subclass 103 (granted offshore)

This permanent visa lets a parent of a settled Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident of Australia or eligible New Zealand citizen move to Australia.

You must:

  • be outside Australia when Immigration decides on your application
  • have an eligible child who is a settled Australian citizen, Permanent resident or Eligible New Zealand citizen, unless you are applying for the Retirement Pathway
  • meet the balance-of-family test, unless you are applying for the Retirement Pathway
  • have an Assurance of Support, unless you are applying for the Retirement Pathway
  • not have a Sponsored Parent (Temporary) (Subclass 870) visa when applying for this visa
6415

Visa Application Fees (AUD)

From AUD 6,415 for most applicants. Different charges may apply if applicant held or previously held other visa types.

You pay the fees in 2 instalments:

  • AUD 4,350 at the time of application, and
  • AUD 2,065 at the time of decision

There is also a fee for each family member who applies for the visa with you.

Additionally, you will need to pay an Assurance of Support (AoS) bond of AUD 5,000 for the main applicant and AUD 2,000 for the additional applicant.

You might also have to pay other costs for health checks, police certificates and biometrics.

30

Avg. Processing Time (years)

Applications for all parent visas are subject to capping and queueing.

As at June 2020, Parent visa applications that were submitted on or before August 2010 have been released for final processing.

Based on current planning levels, it is estimated that new Parent visa applications lodged that meet the criteria to be queued are likely to take approximately at least 30 years to be released for final processing.

4

Aged Parent visa subclass 804 (granted in Australia)

This permanent visa lets an aged parent of a settled Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident of Australia or eligible New Zealand citizen stay in Australia.

To apply for this visa you must:

  • be in Australia when you apply as well as when Immigration decides on your application
  • have an eligible child who is a settled Australian citizen, Permanent resident or Eligible New Zealand citizen, unless you are applying for the Retirement Pathway
  • be old enough to receive the age pension in Australia. This is usually 65 to 67 depending on your date of birth.
  • meet the balance-of-family test, unless you are applying for the Retirement Pathway
  • have an Assurance of Support, unless you are applying for the Retirement Pathway
  • not have a Sponsored Parent (Temporary) (Subclass 870) visa when applying for this visa
6415

Visa Application Fees (AUD)

From AUD 6,415 for most applicants. Different charges may apply if applicant held or previously held other visa types.

You pay the fees in 2 instalments:

  • AUD 4,350 at the time of application, and
  • AUD 2,065 at the time of decision

There is also a fee for each family member who applies for the visa with you.

Additionally, you will need to pay an Assurance of Support (AoS) bond of AUD 5,000 for the main applicant and AUD 2,000 for the additional applicant.

You might also have to pay other costs for health checks, police certificates and biometrics.

30

Avg. Processing Time (years)

Applications for all parent visas are subject to capping and queueing.

As at June 2020, Parent visa applications that were submitted on or before May 2012 have been released for final processing.

Based on current planning levels, it is estimated that new Parent visa applications lodged that meet the criteria to be queued are likely to take approximately at least 30 years to be released for final processing.

Temporary Contributory Parent Visas With Permanent Pathway

These temporary contributory parent visas offer a two-step pathway to permanent contributory parent visas.

5

Temporary Contributory Parent visa subclass 173 (granted offshore)

This temporary visa lets a parent of a settled Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident of Australia or eligible New Zealand citizen to stay temporarily in Australia.

You can spread the cost of the permanent contributory visa over a number of years by applying in 2 steps:

  1. first, apply for the temporary Contributory Parent (Temporary) (subclass 173) visa, then
  2. apply for the permanent Contributory Parent (subclass 143) visa

For this visa you must:

  • be outside Australia when Immigration decides on your application
  • have an eligible child who is a settled Australian citizen, Permanent resident or Eligible New Zealand citizen
  • meet the balance-of-family test
  • not have a Sponsored Parent (Temporary) (Subclass 870) visa when applying for this visa

Once you get this visa, you can work and study in Australia. You will also be eligible to enrol for Medicare.

31930

Visa Application Fees (AUD)

From AUD 31,930 for most applicants. Different charges may apply if applicant held or previously held other visa types.

You pay the fees in 2 instalments:

  • AUD 2,800 at the time of application, and
  • AUD 29,130 at the time of decision

There is also a fee for each family member who applies for the visa with you.

You might also have to pay other costs for health checks, police certificates and biometrics.

In step two, when you apply for the permanent parent visa (Subclass 143) you will need to pay AUD 19,785 instead of AUD 47,755

5

Avg. Processing Time (years)

Applications for all parent visas are subject to capping and queueing.

As at May 2020, Contributory Parent visa applications that were submitted on or before April 2016 have been released for final processing.

Based on current planning levels, it is estimated that new Contributory Parent visa applications lodged that meet the criteria to be queued are likely to take approximately at least 5 years to be released for final processing.

2

Travel & Stay (years)

Stay in Australia for up to 2 years.

The visa period starts on the date you enter Australia after you are granted the visa.

You can reenter Australia multiple times during the 2 year period.

6

Temporary Contributory Aged Parent visa subclass 884 (granted in Australia)

This temporary visa lets an aged parent of a settled Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident of Australia or eligible New Zealand citizen to stay temporarily in Australia.

You can spread the cost of the permanent contributory visa over a number of years by applying in 2 steps:

  1. first, apply for the temporary Contributory Parent (Temporary) (subclass 884) visa, then
  2. apply for the permanent Contributory Parent (subclass 864) visa

To apply for this visa you must:

  • be in Australia when you apply as well as when Immigration decides on your application
  • have an eligible child who is a settled Australian citizen, Permanent resident or Eligible New Zealand citizen
  • be old enough to receive the age pension in Australia. This is usually 65 to 67 depending on your date of birth.
  • meet the balance-of-family test
  • not have a Sponsored Parent (Temporary) (Subclass 870) visa when applying for this visa

Once you get this visa, you can work and study in Australia. You will also be eligible to enrol for Medicare.

31930

Visa Application Fees (AUD)

From AUD 31,930 for most applicants. Different charges may apply if applicant held or previously held other visa types.

You pay the fees in 2 instalments:

  • AUD 2,800 at the time of application, and
  • AUD 29,130 at the time of decision

There is also a fee for each family member who applies for the visa with you.

You might also have to pay other costs for health checks, police certificates and biometrics.

In step two, when you apply for the permanent contributory aged parent visa (Subclass 864) you will need to pay AUD 19,785 instead of AUD 47,755

5

Avg. Processing Time (years)

Applications for all parent visas are subject to capping and queueing.

As at May 2020, Contributory Parent visa applications that were submitted on or before April 2016 have been released for final processing.

Based on current planning levels, it is estimated that new Contributory Parent visa applications lodged that meet the criteria to be queued are likely to take approximately at least 5 years to be released for final processing.

2

Travel & Stay (years)

Stay in Australia for up to 2 years.

The visa period starts on the date you enter Australia after you are granted the visa.

You can reenter Australia multiple times during the 2 year period.

Temporary Parent Visas Without Permanent Pathway

This temporary parent visa is a good option for parents who wish to visit Australia to stay with their children for up to 3 or 5 years at a time.

7

Temporary Sponsored Parent visa subclass 870

This temporary visa lets a parent of a settled Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident of Australia or eligible New Zealand citizen stay in Australia for 3 or 5 years.

To apply for this visa you must:

  • have an approved Parent Sponsor before you can lodge an application for this visa
  • lodge your visa application within 6 months of the sponsorship approval, or 60 days if you are given Permission to Apply in Australia
  • adequate health arrangements for period of stay in AU
  • be a genuine temporary entrant
  • meet health and character requirements

No work: You cannot work in Australia while you are on this visa.

No Permanent Pathway: You cannot apply for any other Parent Visa (173, 143, 884, 864, 103 or 804) while holding this visa or if you held 870 visa, you must've left Australia since that visa ceased to be in effect to make a valid application for these visas.

10000

Visa Application Fees (AUD)

AUD 5,000 for 3 year visa or AUD 10,000 for a 5 year visa. 

You pay the fees in 2 instalments:

  • AUD 1,000 at the time of application, and
  • AUD 4,000 for a 3 year visa or AUD 9,000 for a 5 year visa, at the time of decision

There is also a fee for each family member who applies for the visa with you.

You might also have to pay other costs for health checks, police certificates and biometrics.

4

Avg. Processing Time (months)

Processing times

  • 75% of applications: 68 days
  • 90% of applications: 4 months
10

Max. Travel & Stay (years)

Stay in Australia for 3 years or 5 years at a time. However, period or date(s) will be determined on a case by case basis.

Re-apply for further Temporary Sponsored Parent visas to visit up to a maximum period of 10 years in Australia.

You must be outside Australia for at least 90 days before being eligible to be granted another Subclass 870 visa, unless you have permission to apply in Australia

Parent Sponsor Requirements

You must be an approved Parent Sponsor before a Temporary Sponsored Parent visa (subclass 870) application can be lodged.

To become a sponsor, you must:

  • be over 18
  • an Australian citizen, or
  • an Australian permanent resident usually resident in Australia for at least 4 years or eligible New Zealand citizen usually resident in Australia for at least 4 years, and
  • you have not been unlawful or held a bridging visa (other than a bridging visa A, B or C) during the last 4 years
  • your taxable income for the most recent completed taxable income year prior to the date of lodgement of the sponsorship application, must be at least equal to, or greater than AUD83,454.80.

Once your sponsorship application is approved, your household is limited to one sponsorship at a time.

Your sponsorship can cover up to 2 parents per household at a time.

You can sponsor:

  • one or both of your parents, or
  • one, or both, of your partner’s parents, or
  • one of your parents and one of your partner’s parents

Sponsor can be in or outside Australia, when sponsorship application is lodged.

Obligations:

  • Provide financial support and accommodation
  • notify of changes in circumstances eg. sponsor charged with crime or dies
  • pay back all outstanding public health debts incurred by the sponsored parent in Australia

Sponsorship will end:

  • if your permanent visa is cancelled
  • if you die
  • if you withdraw your sponsorship
  • if the prospective visa applicant does not apply for a Sponsored Parent (Temporary) visa within 6 months after approval of the sponsorship
  • the day the granted Sponsored Parent (Temporary) visa ends.
420

Sponsorship Application Fees (AUD)

The sponsorship application fee is AUD420.

4

Avg. Processing Time (months)

Processing times

  • 75% of applications: 38 days
  • 90% of applications: 4 months
83454.80

Income Test

To pass the income test, your taxable income for the most recent completed taxable income year prior to the date of lodgement of the sponsorship application, must be at least equal to, or greater than AUD83,454.80.

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1

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2

In depth research & Advice

Your personal consultant then researches all possible options for you and prepares a detailed plan of action and milestones for your successful migration.

3

Application prep & submission

Once you approve the plan, your personal consultant takes over. Your application is prepared, all relevant documents are compiled and lodged focusing on timely and error free submissions.

4

Ongoing updates & communication

Our team continually monitors the progress of your application every step of the process. Any updates are promptly communicated to you to ensure that nothing slips through the cracks.

Accreditations & Memberships

Good luck to you with the parent visa application as well as with your journey to becoming a permanent resident and citizen of Australia.

Still need more help? Contact our Parent Visa Specialists who will guide you step by step in preparing and lodging your parent visa application.

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