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Australian parent visa requirements

See all articlesAustralian parent visa requirements
Partner & Family
Australian Migration Lawyer
February 12, 2024
minute read

The idea of reuniting with family from overseas is an exciting prospect, making parent visas one of the most popular visa types. As a result, these visas can be a time-consuming and costly endeavor, making an informed and strong application all the more important. We highly recommend getting in touch with us here at Australian Migration Lawyers to help you through this process.

It’s important to understand that processing times can be extensive, and certain visa subclasses come with substantial financial requirements. Consequently, understanding the eligibility criteria for each parent visa type is paramount and this guide is the first step to comprehending what lies ahead of you.

 A quick overview of parent visas in Australia

There are several types of Australian parent visas available, each tailored to accommodate different age groups and individual needs. However, they can be generally be categorized into three main types as follows:

  1. Temporary visa for all parents (Subclass 870)
  2. Temporary/permanent visa for aged parents (subclass 804 or 884/864) - for visa applicant who is onshore and reaches Australian pension age (at least 67 years old)
  3. Temporary/permanent visa for other parents (subclass 103 or 173/143)

We understand that the above list can seem confusing to those not in the know when it comes to Parent Visas. If you’d like to know which parent visa type you or your loved one might suit, contact us.

Although the requirements for each parent visa type differ slightly, there are key eligibility requirements that apply to all applicants. They are: 

  • You must be a parent of an Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen
  • Your child must be an approved parent sponsor
  • You must have paid back any debt to the Australian government
  • You must meet health and character requirements
  • You have to meet the balance of family test (except for subclass 870 visa), which means you must have more children living in Australia than in any other country, or at least half of your children are eligible to sponsor you.
  •  For a permanent visa application, you must provide an Assurance of Support


Book a consultation

If you are interested in getting more information about a parent visa, get in touch with Australian Migration Lawyers for a free consultation


Beginning your parent visa journey

When it comes to applying for a parent visa, many people can experience both excitement and frustration as all applications are subject to the risk of being refused.

Thorough research and careful planning for your application is paramount. This will set a solid foundation for a successful parent visa application down the line.

It’s recommended to conduct your visa application in a systematic manner. Having a lawyer by your side who has been through the process a number of times is a great way to ensure things don’t get missed. However to help you to understand how to manage the process, we have outlined the following steps.

1. Application preparation

The initial step in your parent visa journey involves thorough preparation. This goes beyond merely filling out forms and extends to having a comprehensive understanding of the process. Prior to commencing the application process, it is imperative to compile all requisite information and documents. This includes personal identification, character documents, evidence demonstrating your ability to meet the balance of family test, and so on.

Keep in mind that the strength of your evidence significantly influences the Department of Home Affairs’ decision. To enhance the successful opportunity, a helpful approach is to construct a checklist encompassing all the necessary documents.

2. Application lodgement

Now it’s time to submit. A well-prepared and comprehensive application has the potential to speed up the Department processing times. Conversely, incomplete or unclear information can lead to delays in your application. Therefore, we highly recommend triple-checking everything before lodging your application.

3. Waiting for your visa and understanding bridging visas

After lodging your application, it's all about patience. Processing times can vary significantly based on the length of the queue, financial year quota given by the Australian government, the complexity of your case, and so forth.

However, you may be eligible for a bridging visa while waiting for your parent visa decision. This bridging visa allows you to stay lawfully in Australia until your parent visa is decided. If you are a visa holder when you apply, it will remain effective until its expiry date.

The journey of applying for a parent visa can be intricate, but with careful preparation and a clear understanding of the process, it becomes much more manageable. Should you require assistance at any stage, please do not hesitate to contact us. We are here to support you every step of the way, and together, we can work towards making your Australian migration dream a reality.


Aged parent visa subclass

There are three available aged parent visas:

  • Contributory Aged Parent (Temporary) visa (subclass 884);
  • Contributory Aged Parent visa (subclass 864)
  • Aged Parent visa (subclass 804)

Aged parent visa allows you to work and study in Australia and sponsor eligible relatives to come to Australia. As above, there are several similarities between the visa categories, for all aged parent visas, you must be in Australia (but not in immigration clearance) when you apply for the visa and when the decision on your application is made, you must not currently hold nor have previously applied for a Sponsored Parent (Temporary) (subclass 870).  Furthermore, applicants must be old enough to receive the age pension in Australia.

Aged Parent visa (804):

This visa allows you to stay in Australia indefinitely, work and study in Australia, enrol in Medicare, and if eligible, apply for Australian citizenship. Additionally, you can travel to and from Australia as much as you wish for five years. 

If you’re looking for faster processing times, you may want to consider applying for either the Contributory Aged Parent Visa (Subclass 864) or the Contributory Aged Parent (Temporary) Visa (Subclass 884). However, it’s important to note that both of these visas are significantly more expensive than the Aged Parent Visa (Subclass 804).

Contributory Aged Parent (Temporary) visa (884):

Contributory Aged Parent (Temporary) visas (884) enables successful applicants to reside in Australia for a maximum of 2 years as well as work and study in Australia and apply for a permanent Contributory aged parent visa (864). 

Contributory Aged Parent Visa (Subclass 864):

This visa allows you to stay in Australia as a permanent resident, work and study in Australia, enrol in Medicare and if eligible, apply for Australian citizenship. As with the aged Parent visa (804), successful applicants can travel to and from Australia as much as they wish for five years. 

We understand that reuniting parents and children from across the world can be an emotional journey. If you want to better understand your options when it comes to parent visas, contact us at Australian Migration Lawyers.

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