A common scenario for new Australian citizens and permanent residents is that their parents are often left overseas, with limited ability to visit their children in Australia.
On 21 June 2016, the Coalition government announced its commitment to introduce an ‘enhanced visitor visa’ for parents, if the Coalition is re-elected.
The government has now asked for submissions by the general public – people inside and outside Australia – to send submissions in response to a discussion paper. These submissions must be submitted by email at firstname.lastname@example.org by 31 October 2016.
This may provide a way for parents overseas to visit their children in Australia for periods of up to five years. While not yet certain, the prospect of this visa is very exciting.
The enhanced visitor visa for parents, if introduced, would allow parents of Australian citizen or permanent resident children, to stay in Australia for up to five years.
This contrasts with the time limits, expense, waiting times, or asset requirements for currently available visas that parents often use.
Period and features
The visa would be available to the parent for up to five years, depending on a variety of factors
Another five years may be granted at the end of the visa, however such an application would probably have to be made when the parent is overseas again.
The visa would only be available to the parents of Australian citizen or permanent resident children.
There would be:
A requirement for adequate health insurance
A sponsorship requirement: The child would have to sponsor the parent applicant
A bond arrangement, similar to the current Assurances of Support
A health assessment
English language ability, while not mandatory, may be beneficial
The ‘balance of family’ test would not apply
The exact Visa Application Charge (VAC), amount of bond, and other financial aspects are yet to be determined.
See the Department of Immigration and Border Protection information page.