A child born in Australia, to an Australian citizen or an Australian Permanent Resident, automatically gains Australian citizenship by descent. For such condition, the precursor is either of the parents of the child should be an Australian citizen or have a permanent residency permit in Australia at the time of childbirth.

The above is quite a straightforward case where a child gets to be an Australian citizen by birth.

However, child visas are a slightly complicated issue when it comes to surmising the status of the child born outside Australia to non-Australian citizens.

Children born out of Australia to Australian permanent residents do not become citizens of Australia by default, unlike earlier circumstance. The parents must apply for a permanent visa for a child under subclass 101.

Until the visa is granted, the child should remain outside Australia and arrive on a set date to Australia.

The eligibility criteria need to be met, to get the permanent child ( subclass 101) visa.

Child (Subclass 101) Visa

If the child is under 18 years of age, the parents can apply for the visa on behalf of the child. The age eligibility rule for a child visa goes like this:

Child Visa ( subclass 101) can be granted up to 25 years of age. Anyone who is above 18 years, should either be a full-time student and is dependent on the parents or suffers a disability that does not let him work.

There is a strict condition of parental rights and responsibilities in Australia for granting a child visa (101) for a child under 18 years.

1.       The laws of the child’s home country allows the removal of the child

2.       The applicant parent must have written consent from all those people who have the legal rights to decide where the child lives

3.       It is consistent with the Australian Child Order

The child must be single at the time of application and grant of child visa. If the child gets married or enters into a de facto relationship before entering Australia, the visa will be cancelled with immediate effect.

Character requirements

A child over 16 years of age needs to meet the character requirements to get the visa approved. Police verification letter from each country the child has lived for a year or more in the previous 10 years after turning 16 years, must be arranged, if required by the DIPB.

Health requirements

The child and all the members of the family, mentioned in the visa application must meet the health requirement, whether they are migrating or not.

Sponsoring the child for Child Visa, subclass 101

The sponsoring parent must be any of these: an Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident or an eligible NZ citizen. A de facto partner or a spouse of the child’s parent can sponsor the child for visa too.

The child who is being sponsored should either be a biological or adopted child to the sponsoring parent. If a stepchild is below 18 years and the step-parent is no longer the child’s parent’s partner, he/she can still be sponsored by the step-parent; since the parent has the legal responsibility to take care of the child.

The parent must have adopted the child before him/her getting a permanent residency in Australia, or Australian citizenship or became eligible for NZ citizenship.

If the sponsoring parent’s circumstances change during the visa processing and affect the eligibility status of the sponsoring parent, the DIBP should be informed immediately.

Responsibilities of a sponsoring parent

1.       Suppor the child to learn English by enrolling the child in English language class.

2.       Provide accommodation and reasonable living expenses of the child for the initial two years in Australia.

3.       Assist the child to settle in Australia.

4.       Be responsible for the child’s expenses to the Australian government.

As a sponsoring parent, you need to provide an assurance of support for the child you are sponsoring, if required by the DIBP.

As the child visa (subclass 101) is a permanent visa, the child can apply for Australian citizenship if he/she meets the eligibility criteria for the same.

Similar to other PR holders in Australia, the child visa holder can travel, work, stay and study in Australia indefinitely. Child visa allows the holder to travel in and out of Australia for 5 years on the visa from visa issuance date. After 5 years, the visa should be renewed to enter into Australia.

The child visa holder can sponsor the eligible relatives for permanent residency in Australia as an Australian PR.

The child gets access to Australian government-run Medicare facility.

Getting grant of child visa, subclass 101 may take anywhere between 8 months to a year. For cost and current processing time for this visa, check DIBP site: https://www.border.gov.au/


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