Parent Visas

Parents may be eligible to migrate to Australia if their child (natural, adopted or step-child) is in Australia and is an Australian citizen or Australian permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen.

Parent Visa Categories

There are currently six classes of Parent visas which fall into two major categories – non-contributory and contributory. They may also be classified on the basis of an applicant’s age; and temporary and permanent residence. Permanent options allow a five-year stay in Australia (following which you will need to apply for further visas, such as Resident Return Visas, to continue living lawfully in Australia), work and study, access Medicare, travel, and eventually consider application for citizenship.

Due to the “cap and queue” restrictions on non-contributory parent visas which limit the number of visas that can be processed in a given year, they currently take between 25 to 30 years.

  • While contributory parent visas have much shorter processing times, allowing for more feasible options, they are much more expensive. 
  • The advantage of non-contributory visas is that the costs are significantly lower. However the aforementioned ‘cap and queue’ arrangement means a significant delay before consideration of applications due to the low number of places allocated each program year.
  • Applicants may also consider first applying for the temporary options and then transitioning to the permanent options so as to stagger the costs of the fees to the Department into manageable amounts. 

Eligibility Criteria

To apply for a parent visa, you must be sponsored by your child, or another eligible sponsor, in Australia. Your spouse and other dependent family members may be included in your application if they meet the specified requirements. To be eligible for this visa, you must pass the Balance of Family test and meet age requirements.

Balance of Family Test

The total number of children and their permanent residence location affects the balance of family test. The test specifies that:

  • At least half of your children should be permanent residents in Australia;


  • You should have more children living permanently in Australia than in any other country

The Balance of Family test can be complex, with possibility of several combinations. For ALL parent visas, it is necessary to pass the Balance of Family test. Please contact us to confirm your eligibility and further requirements regarding your proposed application.

Age Criteria

An ‘aged parent’ is one who is old enough to be granted an Australian age pension. However, there is a waiting period of 10 years before you can receive the Australian age pension (unless there is a reciprocal agreement with another country which pays you a pension). Feel free to contact us for more details about the eligibility criteria for you.

Note: The requirement to be an ‘aged parent’ is necessary only for the primary applicant for an onshore parent visa.

Note: There are a limited number of parent visa grants each year, and this number is reviewed annually by the Australian Immigration Authority.

Depending on where the applicants are located, they can apply for an onshore or offshore visa.

Please contact us to discuss your requirements or click here for a detailed assessment of your particulars towards migration to Australia.