Minister Bowen has announced that parents of Australian citizens and permanent residents will be able to apply for Tourist visas to visit Australia for longer periods of stay than is currently allowed.
DIAC has announced that it will consider granting on a case by case basis:
• Tourist visas of up to five years' validity with 12 months stay on each entry for parents who are outside Australia and in the Parent (Subclass 103) visa queue; and
• Tourist visas of up to three years' validity with 12 months' stay on each entry for parents who are outside Australia and not in the Parent visa queue.
Parents granted these longer Tourist visas will also:
• Be expected to hold health insurance to cover any healthcare costs during their stays;
• Have visa conditions limiting applications for further visas while they are in Australia; and
• Be expected to maintain extended periods of absence between visits to Australia.
The changes are expected to be implemented in late 2012.