Australian Government set to announce new aged parent visa

by Ray Clancy on May 5, 2017

in Australia Immigration

Expats in Australia who want their aged parents to join them could benefit from changes being considered as part of a major overhaul of the country’s visa system.

Ministers are considering introducing five-year temporary visas for parents of migrants who are well established in the country, but they are likely to come at a price, with $10,000 per visa being suggested.

Those wishing to apply for such a visa, with a limit of 15,000 per year likely, will need to take out private health insurance as the Government has previously made it clear that it does not want older non-residents to be a burden on the health system.

It is also likely to the children of the aged parent visa will be asked to provide financial support through some kind of a bond, possible of around $5,000. They will have to be Australian citizens or permanent residents to be able to sponsor their parents.

It is expected that the five-year visa would be renewable for a further period of up to five years at a time. A three-year visa has also been considered.

As with the other recent changes announced, the replacement of the 457 visa programme, and tougher criteria for Australian citizenship, it is likely that the new aged parent visa will have an English language proficiency target.

A discussion paper on aged parent visas was released last September so the launch of such a programme will not come as a surprise. But time could be an issue. There is currently a non-contributory aged parent visa in existence but it has a processing timescale of 30 years unless a fee of $47,295 for the main applicant and £44,845 for a spouse so it does not actually attract many applications.

If the $10,000 visa is introduced it is likely to be much more popular and allow more people to be eligible. The new visa would fit in with the Government’s declaration that it is in favour of helping families to be reunited in Australia.

But the Government has also stated that it does not want aged parents to be a financial burden, especially when it comes to healthcare. ‘We recognise that many Australians, including our growing south Asian and Chinese communities, face particular pressures through the separation of children from parents and grandchildren from grandparents,’ Immigration Minister Peter Dutton said last year.

‘We want to help families reunite and spend time together, while ensuring that we do so in a way that does not burden Australia’s healthcare system,’ he added. He also acknowledged that parents could provide benefits as well, such as child minding.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Louise Pallet May 10, 2017 at 8:16 am

I just read an article that a 5 year aged parent visa might come up with self paying costs and medical aid and renewable for another 5 years after that. When will they know for sure and how long is the waiting time in that case?

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