Category Archives: 143 visas

An option for subclass 103 and 804 parent visa applicants – Ministerial Direction 83

As many applicants for Australian parent visas know, there is a choice available when submitting an application: apply for a non-Contributory parent visa (subclass 103 or 804) or for a Contributory parent visa (usually subclass 143 or 864).

The non-Contributory parent visa option is cheaper, but expected application processing times are such that most will not live long enough to see the visa being granted – over 30 years is the present expectation.

Nevertheless many apply for non-Contributory parent visas.   Some do so because they are unaware of the expected visa application processing time.

Others lodge an application for a subclass 103 or 804 visa application and some time later wish they had submitted an application for a Contributory parent visa.

This is where Ministerial Direction 83 can save the day.

Section 7 of the Direction includes the following:

(2)  To ensure fairness and equity in the processing of parent visa applications, the principle of processing applications for Family visas in the order in which they are received by the Department is to be departed from in the following circumstances:

(a) if before lodging a Contributory Parent (classes CA and Class UT) or Contributory Aged Parent (classes DG and UU) visa application the applicant had an unfinalised Parent (Class AX) or Aged Parent (Class BP) visa application, then the date of lodgement of the Contributory Parent or Contributory Aged Parent visa application should be deemed to be the date of lodgement of the unfinalised Parent or Aged Parent visa application.

In other words the date the non-Contributory parent visa application was lodged is deemed to be the date on which a subsequent Contributory parent visa application is lodged.

Note: Migration Regulations permit only 1 x application for one of these parent visas to be awaiting a decision at any given time

So if an application for (say) a subclass 804 visa application was lodged on 1st June 2014 a subsequent application for a subclass 864 visa application this month (September 2022) will be deemed to have been submitted on 1st June 2014.

Such an application would move to the front of the processing queue given the Parent Visa Centre is presently assessing applications that were lodged in the second half of calendar year 2016.

The same outcome can be achieved by subclass 103 visa applicants who move to an onshore Contributory Aged Parent visa application under subclass 864, making use of Ministerial Direction 83.

Parent visa processing times are now significant – even Contributory parent visa applications are taking many years to be decided.  A strategy for those who are not yet aged (as defined – 66.5 presently; 67 for those born on or after 1 January 1957) and hence cannot presently apply for an onshore parent visa might therefore be to apply for a subclass 103 parent visa now, and to apply for a subclass 864 visa when the aged requirement is met.

The lodgement date of the subclass 103 parent visa application will then be deemed to be the lodgement date of the subclass 864 visa application.

Note: the 1st Visa Application Charge has to be paid again when such a strategy is adopted.

Go Matilda Visas is a proactive Australian visa advisory practice.    We have been helping parents apply for visas for over 20 years and work with clients to develop visa strategies that are innovative and relevant to the needs of our clients.

If you are a parent with a child or children living in Australia and would like to discuss a current or planned parent visa application please complete the enquiry form on this page.

We’ll be pleased to have a free initial conversation about your situation, after which we can send a no obligation fee proposal to you.

Parent visa numbers – Ukrainian visa processing

The Immigration Minister in the previous Australian Federal Government announced earlier this year that visas for Ukrainian nationals would be processed as a priority.

This has been given effect by Ministerial Direction number 98.

We have received confirmation from the Department of Home Affairs that there has been no increase in the total number of parent visas available for Program Year 2022-23 at this time, which presently remains at 6,000 in total across the Contributory and non-Contributory visa categories.

The Retirement Visa Pathway to Permanent Residency – Latest Details

The Retirement Pathway to permanent residency was introduced in 2018 for subclass 410 and 405 temporary visa holders.

Under this pathway holders of subclass 410 and 405 visas can apply for permanent visas under subclass 143 or 103.

Since this Pathway was introduced subclass 143 visa applications have been processed quickly; applicants for subclass 103 visas – the cheaper option – have been waiting to hear from the Department of Home Affairs.

At the time the Pathway was introduced the indications were that Pathway applicants for 103 visas should expect to have a wait of 4 or so years.

We await news as to the commencement of processing of these visas.

In the meantime we can advise the following details, which we have received following a Freedom of Information request of the Australian Government:

As at 31 July 2022 there were on hand 207 Parent (Subclass 103) and 14 Contributory Parent (Subclass 143) visa applications for the Retirement Pathway.


Alan’s Update on Contributory Parent Visa Processing

Here are current expectations on the processing of Contributory Parent visas for the program year to 30 June 2023.

These are based on the number of parent visas announced for the 2022-23 program year in the last Federal Budget in March 2022.

Of course, we have since had a change of Government at the Federal level.   The first Labor Budget for the new administration is going to take place on 25 October, 2022 and it is very possible that we will see an uplift in total migration numbers.

Whether this will be focused on skilled migration only remains to be seen – as many will know there are skills shortages across the world and the needs of Australian businesses in terms of skilled visa numbers are being well publicised in the media.

Of course, many skilled migrants with parents residing overseas are more likely to return to the country in which their parents are living – eg in the event of ill health, or due to the pain of separation – so if the Australian Government is of a mind to adopt a holistic approach to skilled migration we consider that including a higher number of parent visas within the overall migration program would be in line with a desired outcome of attracting and retaining skilled migrants to Australia.

The 2022-23 Migration Program includes an allocation of 6,000 visas to parents.

This is further broken down into contributory parent visas (CPVs, subclasses 143, 173, 864, and 884) and non contributory parent visas (subclasses 103 and 804).

We presently anticipate an allocation of 500 visas to non CPVs, and 5,500 to CPVs.

Go Matilda Visas requests information from the Department of Home Affairs periodically as to the number of visa applications on hand broken down into the month the visa application was received.

The latest such information we have is as at 31 March 2022.

A schedule detailing the number of CPV applications is below.

We have assumed 10% of CPV applications will not progress to grant.   This may be due to the withdrawal of the visa application, requirements not being met (eg health, Assurance of Support income test), or the death of the visa applicant.

Given these assumptions we expect individuals with CPV applications lodged in the months up to November 2016 to receive communications from the Parent Visa Centre leading to visa grants over the period to 30 June 2023.

Go Matilda Visas is a proactive Australian visa business, with the bulk of our client base being family visa applications.

We advocate for greater transparency on the part of the Department of Home Affairs in the processing of visa applications, and for parent visa applicants in particular.

Please complete the enquiry form on this page if you are an intending parent visa applicant, are living in Australia and have a parent residing overseas who you want to join you, or have lodged a parent visa application and need some help.

We look forward to hearing from you.


Subclass 870 visa renewals – The need to be outside Australia – Visa strategy for subclass 870 visa holders

The first subclass 870 Sponsored Parent Temporary Visas were granted almost 3 years ago.   With the validity of these visas coming to an end and the processing time for subclass 143 visas extending significantly beyond what was expected when the first SPTVs were granted thoughts are now turning to the requirements for subclass 870 visa renewals – including most notably the need to be offshore (outside Australia) for a period of time.

Underpinning the requirements for the granting of visas generally is legislation (ie the law) and Department of Home Affairs policy guidance.

Relevantly, the Migration Regulations say in the time of application requirements for subclass 870 visas:


(1)  If:

(a) the applicant is outside Australia at the time of application; and

(b) the applicant previously held a Subclass 870 visa; and

(c) there are no exceptional circumstances;

the applicant has been outside Australia for at least 90 consecutive days since the relevant departure day of the applicant.

(2)  The relevant departure day of an applicant is:

(a) if the applicant was in Australia when the last Subclass 870 visa held by the applicant ceased to be in effect—the first day on which the applicant left Australia after that visa ceased to be in effect; or

(b) if the applicant was not in Australia when the last Subclass 870 visa held by the applicant ceased to be in effect—the last day on which the applicant left Australia while that visa was in effect.

The key to not departing Australia is therefore whether one can argue “exceptional circumstances.”

In this regard we have been advised by the Department as follows:

As a temporary visa, the SPTV does not provide a right to remain in Australia permanently. Clause 870.223 gives effect to the policy intention that an applicant must be outside Australia for at least 90 consecutive days before making an application for a second SPTV.

 If a SPTV holder is unable to depart Australia prior to the expiry of their visa, a sponsor can request that the visa holder be permitted to apply for a further SPTV in Australia, or they can apply for an alternative visa to maintain lawful status.

It should also be noted that Schedule 1 of the Migration Regulations 1994 says that: “… an applicant for a subclass 870 visa cannot be the holder of an 870 visa at the time the visa application is submitted.”

This means that an application for a further subclass 870 visa if an existing 870 visa is currently in effect will be an invalid application.

If one wants to remain in Australia upon the expiry of an existing 870 visa and is to seek a renewal 870 visa another visa will therefore be required between the two subclass 870 visas.

This might be – say – an onshore visitor visa (subclass 600), or a student visa (subclass 500).

Key in this regard is avoiding the inclusion of condition 8503 No Further Stay on the visa.

A condition 8503 prevents an application for another visa being submitted while in Australia.

Note: The Department of Home Affairs has announced a concession due to COVID restrictions on the ability to enter Australia.

If you held a Sponsored Parent Temporary Visa (subclass 870) and were outside Australia on 1 July 2021 your visa period has been automatically extended by 18 months.

This concession aims to assist SPTV holders who could not spend the full 3 or 5 years on their visa in Australia due to COVID-19 travel restrictions.

If your visa was extended under this concession, the additional 18 months will not count toward your cumulative 10 year maximum stay period.

Sponsorship obligations for SPTV Sponsors have also been extended for the same 18 month period.


Visa strategy and a consideration of timing are going to become key issues for parents who have subclass 870 visas.  

With a need for approval of the sponsor required before the 870 visa renewal application can be lodged there are real risks here for those who don’t understand the requirements and plan accordingly.

We foresee subclass 870 visa holders going through the distress and upset of having to depart Australia at short notice, or becoming unlawful – ie staying in Australia after the expiry of the 870 visa and not having applied for a further visa that will allow them to remain in Australia.

Many parents who hold subclass 870 visas have bought homes in Australia/have long term rental commitments for their homes, and have brought their personal wealth to Australia in anticipation of their application for permanent residency visas under subclass 143 visa (Contributory Parent) being processed on the basis of timelines advised on the website of the Department of Home Affairs.

As readers of this blog will know, these timelines are backward looking, and do not bear any resemblance to the actual timeline one should expect given the number of visa applications in the system and the number of visas being granted annually.

Details of visa processing times for parents are available here.

We strongly recommend that subclass 870 visa holders take active steps 6 to 12 months before the expiry of their visa to consider their visa strategy and what should be done to ensure there is no interruption in their ability to remain in Australia.

Go Matilda Visas is actively involved in advising parents as to their visa strategies, the preparation of parent visa applications, and the management of parent visa applications to a decision.  

If you require help and support we invite you to complete the enquiry form on this web page.