In accordance with the Family Migration Stream, the Australian government recognizes the fundamental need for family members to be together. Australian citizens, permanent residents, and eligible New Zealand citizens (over the age of 18) can sponsor their family members for migration to the land down under.
Qualified individuals often sponsor their partners, children, and parents. The other fraction of people sponsor their remaining family members. Since the sponsorship slots for “other family members” are limited, the processing time may not work in your favor.
Before you proceed with processing your papers, it is important to know the most appropriate and beneficial visa that suits your situation. Here are some of the options that you can contemplate on:
1. Partner Visa
Let me paint a picture of a scenario which is common to many Filipino families. The process of migration starts with a single family member who tries his luck as an OFW in Australia. Say this said person is Dan, a father of two. Several years went by and Dan is now a permanent resident. His next step is to apply for a Permanent Partner Visa for his spouse.
“What is a Partner Visa?”, you may ask.
A Partner Visa allows your sponsored spouse or “de facto partner” to stay in the country upon the completion of two stages. These two stages are:
a. Granting of a temporary Partner Visa which is valid for a period of about two years from the date of application.
b. Granting of permanent Partner Visa after years of careful assessment from the Immigration.
It is possible to proceed directly to the application of the permanent Partner Visa if the relationship was solidified for more than 2 years and if there are children involved. Same-sex partners can also apply for this category.
2. Prospective Marriage Visa
Australians who wish to wed their Filipina or Filipino fiancés in their motherland can apply for the Prospective Marriage Visa. This type of visa is valid for nine months only. Thus, your wedding ceremony must take place before its expiration.
Your qualified spouse must sponsor you with a partner visa to reside permanently in Australia after you get married.
3. Parent Visa
Whether you want to admit it or not, Australia’s healthcare system and retirement schemes are friendlier compared to that of the Philippines’. These factors can affect the quality of life and longevity of your aging parents. So if you wish to bring them along in Australia for good, you can sponsor your beloved parents with the “Parent Visa”.
The primary eligibility criterion for the Parent Visa is that the parents must have half the number of children or have more children who are permanently living in Australia than any other country. Please be patient as the processing time for this visa can take several years.
4. Contributory Parent Visa
If your time is limited, you can take advantage of the faster processing time of about 12 months by applying for the Contributory Parent Visa. Be forewarned as this convenience comes with a price. Applicants must pay a larger Assurance of Support (AoS) bond and a higher visa application fee.
Are you ready for a commitment like this?
5. Child Visa
The main factor that is present in this type of visa is dependency. The child must be under the age of 25 when the application was lodged. If he or she reached the legal age of 18, the child must be a full-time student and be financially dependent on the sponsoring parent. Exemptions are given to the offsprings with physical or mental disability.
Let us go back to Dan’s scenario in #1. Both Dan and his wife were granted with permanency in Australia. To reunite with his children, Dan decided to apply for the Dependent Child Temporary Visa so that his children can remain in Australia for the same period as his wife.
Other categories of Child Visa include Orphan Relative Visa and Adoption Visa.
After determining which the best type of visa that you must apply for, your sponsor must acknowledge his or her obligations to you and the Australian government. To prevent any complications or problems with your Family Stream Visa applications, it is recommended to seek proper legal advice prior to processing.