If you have a parent living overseas, recent changes to the migration program could provide them with the perfect opportunity to move to Australia. In November 2017, the Federal Government confirmed plans for a new temporary sponsored parent visa. With 15,000 visas available each year, Australian citizens and permanent residents will be able to sponsor their parents for three or five years, with the possibility of renewing their visa to allow them stay in Australia for ten years.
What do the changes entail?
The new temporary sponsored parent visa was included in the 2017-18 migration program. The changes allow Australians to sponsor their parents, so they can effectively extend their time spent in Australia for up to five years at a time.
This provides immense benefits for applicants in terms of ongoing parental support and more opportunity to sustain and improve family relations. It also seeks to address the community’s concerns regarding lengthy wait times associated with the current parent visa arrangements.
How is it different from the old visa arrangements?
Prior to the new arrangement coming into effect, there were two migration options for parents of Australians – a $5,935 visa with a 30-year queue period (known as the Non-Contributory Parent Visa), or a $47,000 visa with a two-year queue period (known as the Contributory Parent Visa). While a temporary visa was also available from $31,620, it only enabled one parent to stay in Australia for up to two years.
What are the main benefits of the new arrangement?
While the old sponsored parent visa program imposed a substantial emotional and financial burden on families, the new system is designed to resolve these issues. According to the government, it will benefit Australian communities by bringing families together.
The new scheme will place migrants’ minds at rest, knowing they may be able to act as sponsors for their parents coming to Australia for up to 10 years. There will be two visas on offer – a $5,000 three-year visa, or a $10,000 five-year visa, each offering a single renewal opportunity for an additional five years (for the same price). So, why wait? To find out which of the parent visa options would best suit your family, speak with a migration agent like Results Migration.
And the benefits keep on rolling
While further information is yet to be revealed, under the new arrangement the parent visa will not be a part of Australia’s annual permanent migration stream (unlike the current arrangement). This will make it more affordable and accessible to applicants.
Concerns about government healthcare and welfare services will also be addressed, as the visa is purposely designed to allow parents to live with their children, not on their own. However, children can still have peace of mind knowing their parents’ health will be taken care of, as parents migrating from overseas will be required to obtain private health insurance from an Australian company.
Because the visa is primarily aimed at strengthening family connections, parents will be unable to work. However, they may assist with family childcare and participate in unpaid volunteer activities. They may also participate in short-term, informal study during their stay in Australia.
What if you already have an existing contributory or non-contributory visa?
If you already have either of these visas, don’t worry – your visa will not be replaced by the new temporary sponsored parent visa.
How does the new arrangement compare with the existing one?
The new arrangement will provide greater safety for the parent(s), the sponsor, and the general Australian community, by establishing a more secure, thorough application process. The sponsorship and visa applications will also be assessed separately. In accordance with this process, the child must be approved as a sponsor prior to when the parent’s visa application is made. In addition to this, a number of assessable criteria requirements must be met by both the sponsor and the applicant prior to visa approval.
So, are you missing your family? Do you want your parents to experience what life is like in Australia and share in the happiness? Apply for the new parent sponsorship program today.