Balance of the Family Test
Parent visas allow Australian permanent residents or citizens to sponsor their parents to migrate to Australia.
Parent visas are open to those parents who pass the balance of the family test. This requires your parents to have at least half of their children settled in Australia or to have more children settled in Australia than in any one other country.
To be a formal sponsor you and your siblings need to be living in Australia for a period of two 2 years before applying for the visa. The sponsor must also give a written undertaking to provide support, accommodation and financial assistance for the applicant and during their first 2 years in Australia.
Waiting period for Parent visas
The Australian Government grants very few Parent visas each year. As a result more people have applied for the visa than there are visas being granted, and the waiting period has excessive. At the moment the waiting period for a Parent visa is extraordinary, being about 18 years.
Contributory Parent visas
In 2003 the Australian Government created the Contributory Parent visa under which visa applicants or their sponsors can make a lump sum payment to the Australian Government just before the visa is granted. This payment covers likely on-going medical expenses in Australia.
As the holder of a Contributory Parent visa you can access Australia's medical expenses and hospital care assistance scheme, Medicare, without restriction. You also have full work rights, can study here if you wish, and apply for citizenship after 4 years in Australia.
Waiting period for Contributory Parent visas
In the 2017–18 Migration Program year, 7,175 places were allocated to the Contributory Parent category, and based on current planning levels new contributory parent category visa applicants can expect to wait up to 48 months before visa grant.
If your parents are in Australia with another kind of visa, for example, a Visitor visa, and are over 65 years old, they can apply for an Aged Contributory Parent visa from within Australia that will give them a bridging visa that will enable them to live in Australia while the application for the Contributory visa is being processed.
Kinds of Contributory Parent visas and costs
You can apply either for a provisional or permanent Contributory Parent visa.
The provisional Contributory Parent (Subclass 173) is a temporary visa valid for two years. It costs AUD$2,595 to apply for this visa, and just before the visa is granted the Australian Government will request you pay a second amount of AUD$29,130 for each parent included in the application. After 2 years in Australia you can apply for the permanent Subclass 143 Parent visa paying an additional AUD$18,885 per parent.
The permanent Contributory Parent (Subclass 143) visa is a permanent visa from the date of the grant. It costs AUD$3,855 to apply for this visa, and just before the visa is granted the Australia Government will request you pay a second amount of AUD$43,600 for each parent included in the application.
The advantage of applying for the provisional and then permanent visa is that it allows you to split the amount of the payments while deciding whether you want to move to Australia permanently.
The child of an Australian Permanent resident born in Australia is an Australian citizen. The child of an Australian permanent resident born outside Australia does not have a visa. If this situation applies to you or you are applying to adopt a child from overseas, the child needs to apply for a Child visa.
To be eligible for the visa the child must be:
- sponsored by their parent or their parent's partner;
- adopted or in the process of adoption
- younger than 18 years of age or a full-time student between 18 and 23 years of age, or 18 or older and unable to work due to a disability and dependent on the sponsoring parent.
VisAustralia would be happy to help you define a strategy combining various visa options that would meet your intentions and to assist you apply for the visa. For more information we invite you to contact VisAustralia and book a Legal Assessment with one of our lawyers or migration agents.