The visas that will bring mums and dads to Australia

Grandparent carrying grand child

The soaring costs of child care in Australia means that many of us are looking at alternative ways to ensure that our children can be well cared for while we are at work. Some couples choose to reduce their working hours in order to minimise child care expenses while others turn to close family members for help. But what if you’re one of the many Australian citizens and residents who are here on your own without the luxury of having your parents or other family members in the country? The answer might be to sponsor your parents to visit or migrate to Australia. Here’s a list of the visa options for your parents to join you in Australia.

Contributory parent visa (Subclass 143)

This is a permanent visa which requires sponsorship by a child who is either a settled Australian citizen, permanent resident or an eligible New Zealand citizen. At least half of the applicant’s children must be either Australian citizens, permanent residents or eligible New Zealand citizens living in Australia. This visa allows for the applicant to include members of their family unit in the application. For example, if your mother is the main applicant, she can include your father in the same application as a secondary applicant.

The applicants must meet health and character requirements, and have access to guaranteed financial support (Assurance of Support). The sponsor is obligated to provide support, accommodation and financial assistance to the visa applicant and any additional applicants for the first 2 years after the visa is granted.

It is called a contributory parent visa as it requires a substantial financial contribution as part of the visa application charge. The visa costs $47,455 and there is an additional charge for each family member who is included in the application. The current processing time is roughly 4 years.

Non-contributory parent visa (Subclass 103)

This is also a permanent visa which shares almost identical requirements with the Contributory Parent Visa. The only difference is that the cost of the visa is $6,100 and an additional charge is payable for any family members included in the application. As this is a non-contributory visa, it does not share the same benefits as the contributory parent visa in terms of the processing time. This visa can take up to 30 years to be decided from the time of application.

Temporary sponsored parent visa (Subclass 870)

The subclass 870 is a temporary visa recently introduced by the Australia government that allows parents of an approved sponsor to enter and stay in Australia for a period of up to 3 or 5 years. This visa is designed primarily to allow parents to stay in Australia to help support their children in caring for grandchildren in Australia. The sponsor must be approved first before the applicant can apply for the visa. Applying to be an approved sponsor costs $420. To be an eligible sponsor, a person must be the child of the applicant or the child’s partner and:

  • Be at least 18 years of age

  • Be an Australian citizen, permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen who has been usually resident in Australia for at least 4 years

  • Not owe any money to the Australian government

  • Meet character requirements

  • Have a taxable income of at least $83,454.80 in the most recent financial year (can be combined with your partner or another eligible child of the applicant)

The visa application must be lodged within 60 days of the sponsor being approved. The costs are $5,000 for a 3 year visa or $10,000 for a 5 year visa. Family members cannot be included in the application, and the applicant is not permitted to work while in Australia. Applicants can apply for and hold multiple subclass 870 visas that add up to a maximum of 10 years stay in Australia. No further subclass 870 visa can be applied for after this. Applicants must meet health and character requirements, have adequate health insurance and be a genuine temporary entrant. Applications to become an approved sponsor opened on 17 April 2019, while applications for the temporary sponsored parent visa will open on 1 July 2019. Processing times will be available in approximately 3 months.

Visitor visa (Subclass 600)

The other visa that allows parents to join their children and grandchildren in Australia is the visitor visa. The cost is $140 and is the most affordable visa option in this list. The applicant must meet health and character requirements, and have adequate means of support to fund their stay in Australia. They must also prove that they are a genuine temporary entrant. Once in Australia, the applicant is not permitted to work and is restricted to no more than 3 months of study.

Applicants who are parents or step-parents of Australian citizens or permanent residents may be granted a multiple entry visa valid for 18 months if they have not previously travelled to Australia and have not applied for a parent visa. For parents who are outside of Australia, have previously held an Australian visa, complied with the conditions of that visa and have not applied for a parent visa, a visa may be granted for 3 years. The current processing time for visitor visas is between 20-28 days.

How we can help you bring your parents to Australia

If you are considering ways to have your parents either visit or migrate to Australia, we can manage the process for you. Contact us on +61 404 010 815 or email us at to schedule a consultation.