How to bring parents to Australia
There are several different types of parent visas, with various time frames and requirements. Let’s take a look at all six scenarios involving parent visas that can lead to bringing both or one of your parents over to Australia, for a family sponsorship.
The purpose of a Parent visa is to allow the parents of Australian citizens, permanent residents and eligible New Zealand citizens to migrate permanently to Australia.
Australian Parent category visas
If you meet the requirements below, you might be eligible to apply for a parent visa:
- you have a child who is an Australian permanent resident, Australian citizen or an eligible New Zealand citizen
- your child has been living lawfully in Australia for the last 2 years before your visa allocation was lodged
- you have a sponsor (most likely your child)
- you must meet the criteria for the Balance of Family test (explained more below)
- you can meet the health and character requirements
How long can you stay in Australia on a parent category visa?
It will depend of the subclass of parent visa you apply for, but a parent category visa can allow you to, either :
- be a temporary resident in Australia for up to 10 years (870 visa- does not require meeting balance of family test)
- get you Australian permanent residency
Family Sponsorship Australia information
You must have a sponsor to apply for a parent category visa to live in Australia as a permanent or temporary resident. Your sponsor needs to be an Australian permanent resident, Australian citizen or eligible New Zealand citizen who:
- is 18 years old or over
- has resided in Australia legally for at least 2 years prior to the parent lodging their visa application
- There are special preparations for a sponsor under the age of 18. If your child or step-child has not yet turned 18, someone else may act as a sponsor as long as they are 18 years old or over and are a settled Australian permanent resident, Australian citizen or an eligible New Zealand citizen. These could include:
- the live-in partner (or spouse) of your child or step-child
- someone who is a relative or guardian of your child or step-child
- someone who is a relative or guardian or the live-in partner (or spouse) of your child or step-child
- a community organization
Balance of family test
If you are a parent applying for a parent category visa, you must meet the balance of family test. This test was designed to determine the degree of your links to Australia.
You will meet the requirements for the balance of family test if:
- at minimum half of your children live permanently in Australia
- you have more children living in Australia than anywhere else
Your visa options for family sponsorship to Australia via Parent Visa
How do you figure out which visa option is right for you?
The following scenarios should help you decide which parent category visa to apply for, given your current circumstances.
Parent visa requirements
As the visa applicant, you must:
- have a child who is an eligible Australian citizen, permanent resident, or New Zealand citizen (see below)
- meet the ‘balance of family’ test. This requires that at least half of your children reside in Australia, or that more of your children reside in Australia than in any other single country
Note: You are not required to meet this test if you hold an eligible subclass 173 Contributory Parent (Temporary) visa.
- pay an additional (‘contributory’) charge to the Australian Government immediately prior to the grant of your visa
Your Australian child must:
- be an Australian citizen, permanent resident, or eligible New Zealand citizen
- be settled in Australia (generally this means that your child must have resided in Australia for at least two years)
- be at least 18 years old, and willing to sponsor your application
Note: You may instead be sponsored by your child’s spouse or de facto partner, provided that this person meets the above requirements. Alternatively, if your child is under 18, you may in some circumstances be sponsored by a relative or guardian of your child, or by a community organisation.
undertake to provide you with any necessary financial and accommodation support for the first two years after your arrival in Australia
- Visitor Visa options for Parents after COVID-19
- Travel exemption applications now open for parents of Australians
Are you applying outside or in Australia?
Parent Visa (subclass 103)
- You are currently outside Australia
- You have a child who currently lives in Australia
- You wish to become a permanent Australian resident
- a parent must have a sponsor
- a parent must be able to meet the balance of family test requirements
- a parent must must meet health and character requirements
- Could take up to 30 years for processing
Contributory Parent (Temporary) Visa (subclass 173)
- You are currently outside of Australia
- You have a child who is currently in Australia
- You want to reside in Australia as a temporary resident for up to 2 years
- You must be prepared to pay a higher visa application charge for quicker processing
- In order to apply for the Contributory Parent (Temporary) Visa (subclass 173), a parent must:
- Be able to meet the requirements for health and character
- Have a sponsor
- Can meet the balance of family test requirements
Contributory Parent (Migrant) visa (subclass 143)
- This is a permanent visa.
- AUD47,455 for each parent
- Processing times: 2-3 years
- stay in Australia indefinitely as a permanent resident and sponsor eligible relatives to come to Australia
- travel to and from Australia for 5 years before you need a Resident Return visa
- work and study in Australia
- be sponsored by an eligible Australian citizen, permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen
- meet the balance-of-family test plus our character and health requirement
- have an Assurance of Support
Sponsored Parent 870 Visa
Sponsored Parent (Temporary) visa applicants must:
- be sponsored by a person who is an approved parent sponsor
- be at least 18 years of age
- be outside Australia (unless invited in writing to apply by the Department), for at least 90 days if the applicant holds or has previously held a Sponsored Parent (Temporary) visa
- be an Australian citizen/permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen who has been usually resident in Australia for four years
- provide evidence of health insurance
- not have an outstanding public health debt (unless appropriate arrangements have been made to repay the debt)
- satisfy health, character, and national security requirements.
- sponsors will need to have a taxable income of at least $83,454.80
- Unlike permanent Parent visas, there is no Balance of Family Test requirement for this visa, meaning a visa applicant is not required to have more than half of their children residing in Australia.
The visa application charge is:
- $5,000 for a visa of up to three years’ duration; or
- $10,000 for a visa of up to five years’ duration.
If you are in Australia:
Aged Parent (Residence) visa (subclass 804)
- Processing time approx 10-15 years, in some cases this can be fast tracked
- Application fees are currently AUD 6100
- Must meet the aged requirement at the time of application
- You must be in Australia at time of applying for this visa
- If you are inside Australia you must have no restrictions to apply for this visa
- This visa can only be granted if you are outside Australia
- Health and character requirements for all applicants arerequired at time of lodgement and in some cases at a later date
- An assurance of support bond is required for 2 years
- A Bridging visa is available to remain in Australia however there will be no work or study rights
Contributory Aged Parent (Temporary) Visa (subclass 884)
- You are currently in Australia
- You have a child currently residing in Australia
- You wish to live in Australia in Australia as a temporary resident for up to 2 years
- You meet the age requirements
- You are prepared to pay a higher amount for visa application charges so you can have quicker processing
- In order to apply a parent must:
- Currently meet the age requirements
- Can meet the balance of family test
- Has an approved sponsor (child)
Contributory Aged Parent (Residence) visa (subclass 864)
- You are currently in Australia
- You have a child currently residing in Australia
- You wish to become an Australian permanent resident
- You currently meet the age requirements
- You are prepared to pay a larger sum for your visa application charges
- In order to apply for the Contributory Aged Parent Visa (subclass 864), a parent must:
- Have a sponsor (their child most likely)
- Meet the requirement for age
- Can meet the balance of family test
- Is able to prove health and character requirements
- Can obtain an assurance of support
Do you currently hold a Contributory Aged Parent Visa (subclass 864)? Do you wish to stay in Australia on a permanent basis? You can apply for the Permanent Contributory Aged Parent Visa (subclass 864) before your current temporary visa expires.
Assurance of support
An assurance of support will be required for any applicants applying for a permanent Parent category visa. This assurance is a legal commitment from an individual or organisation stating that they will give you financial support so you do not have to solely rely on social security payments. This assurance will include you and anyone else included in your visa application (such as, family members).
Who can give assurance of support?
This can be your sponsor (person or organisation) or someone else currently an Australian citizen, permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen. A joint assurance of support can be given, with up to three people included to assist you in your family migration to Australia.
Capping and queuing
The age requirement was mentioned in some of the Parent category visas above, so let’s look at what the age requirement will be.
This requirement to be an “Aged Parent” is only needed for the main applicant for an onshore parent category visa. An “Aged Parent” is one who is old enough to qualify for an Australian age pension. To apply for a parent visa which includes the word “Aged” in the title, only one parent has to meet the age requirement.
PLEASE NOTE: This does not mean you will be granted the age pension in Australia if you are an aged parent. There will be a waiting period of 10 years before you can receive the pension (unless there is a reciprocal agreement with another country which will pay you the pension). This period of 10 years will continue even if you become an Australian citizen.
What is the new parent visa for Australia?
The most recent parent visa is the (Subclass 870) Sponsored Parent (Temporary) visa, which is a temporary visa lets a parent of an Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen visit Australia for up to 3 or 5 years.
How long does parent visa take?
|Visa||New applications may be processed in at least|
|Contributory Parent visas||12 years|
|Parent & Aged Parent visas||29 years|
Which Australian visa is best for parents?
We recommend booking an appointment to see which parent visa is more suited to your situation and the pros and cons of each option.
Can I bring my parents to Australia permanently?
The parent visa provides parents of Australian permanent residents and citizens with an opportunity to either move to Australia temporarily to permanently, depending on your eligibility and circumstances. There are various visa options for parents of eligible sponsors that may lead to permanent residency.
How much does a parent visa cost in Australia?
The visa application fee for a contributory parent visa is $4,765 for the main applicant and $1,605 for the dependent partner. The contributory fee of $43,600 per applicant must be paid prior to the granting of the visa. This payment is requested after health and police checks requirements are met.
Can parents work on a parent visa Australia?
Both Contributory Parent visa (subclass 173/884 and subclass 143/864) allow parents to work in Australia. You may seek employment or establish your own business without restrictions.
How long is the parents visa (sc870) in Australia?
This temporary visa lets a parent of an Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen visit Australia for up to 3 or 5 years.
Can I sponsor my parents to live in Australia?
The Parent Visa enables parents of children who are Australian citizens or permanent residents to be sponsored for permanent residence in Australia. The Parent visa migration program is capped and queued, some visa types have a long processing time of up to 30 years.