Inheritance and 188 visas
Business visa requirements specify what funds are acceptable as source of assets.
188B investor stream visa
This pathway is intended for applicants with investment or business experience. Aside from the net assets of $2.25 million Australian dollars, you are required to invest $1.5 million in a government bond in Australia. These funds must have been accumulated from investment or business activity. You cannot fund this investment through inherited funds.
188C Significant investor stream visa
The only investment pathway that can be based on inherited funds is the subclass 188C significant investor stream. This pathway requires net assets of $5 million and the funds can be sourced from inheritance (which you could combine with other legally acquired funds to meet the $5-million total). You will need to provide evidence of the source of the funds, but there is no requirement to hold these for a specified length of time.
Gifts, bequests and inheritance are acceptable sources of funds for making the complying significant investment. If the source of funds are claimed to be gifts, bequests or inheritance, the applicant must demonstrate that the funds were lawfully acquired. Failure to do so will result in the refusal of their application.
If the source of funds is from gifts or inheritance, the visa applicant should provide a signed declaration with a description in their own words on the source of funds of their asset portfolio. The visa applicant should also demonstrate how the person providing the gift, or passing the inheritance, has accumulated their funds equivalent to the sum used to make the complying significant investment. Documents may include:
- the Deed of Gift or
- a Will or
- evidence of the relationship between the provider and recipient of the gift or inheritance or
- transaction records showing the accumulation of assets over a period of time
For gifted / inherited assets, duly witnessed gift deeds / wills, evidence demonstrating how the gift provider accumulated such assets and evidence demonstrating the receipt of the gifted/inherited assets from the gift provider.
Scrutinising ownership or source of funds
DHA has discretion should they have concerns that, despite supporting documentation:
- the funds were not sourced from eligible investment or qualifying business activities (for example, were inherited or other windfall) or
- the funds were sourced from illegal activities or
- the funds were not wholly owned by the applicant or
- the supporting documentation is not genuine.
In assessing the ownership and source of assets used for a designated investment, DHA may make inquiries into the source of funds of the initial capital for eligible investments as well as for the designated investment. If DHA have concerns as to how the applicant accumulated funds for a bank deposit sufficient to generate the designated investment, they may make inquiries to satisfy themselves that the original funds were accumulated legally.
It is open to DHA to include certain inherited assets, having regard to such factors as:
- the proportion of the assets (to be liquidated to fund the designated investment) that were inherited and
- the proportion of the applicant’s total assets that were inherited and
- how long ago the assets were inherited and
- the value that has been added to the assets since they were inherited.
Even if an inherited asset is excluded from consideration, any returns achieved on the original value of that asset may still be included. DHA are to assess whether the applicant is likely to satisfy the below before funds are deposited in a designated investment.
Accumulated from either or both of:
- one or more qualifying businesses conducted by the applicant, the applicant’s spouse or de facto partner, or the applicant and his or her spouse or de facto partner together; and
- eligible investment activities of the applicant, the applicant’s spouse or de facto partner, or the applicant and his or her spouse or de facto partner together.
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