Aged Parent Visas - Medicare Query
This is a long shot but it is worth asking, I feel, just in case anyone already in SA knows the answer for sure.
The question: If a British Parent is in SA on a Bridging Visa A whilst waiting for a subclass 804 Aged Parent visa application to be processed, can this Parent claim Medicare under the Reciprocal Health Care Agreement between Australia and the UK, please?
I know that there are British Parents all over Oz who are in exactly the position I describe above but as I do not know any of them personally, I have drawn a blank on trying to find out what happens about Medicare during the life of the Bridging Visa A.
If anybody knows anybody in the above position, I would be immensely grateful if someone could ask the British Parent whether he or she has had any problems with claiming Medicare, please, in South Australia.
The reason why I am asking is because a dear friend of mine lives in Adelaide. We are having trouble convincing her 70 year old father that the cost of Contributory Parent visas for himself and his wife would be worth the money. OK. If he digs his heels in and (which is not guaranteed) we manage to get 90-day ETAs for them and squirrel the Parents into Oz by this means, applications for Aged Parent visas would then become possible. The Parents would use Bridging Visas A to hold the fort for around15 years whilst the Aged Parent visa applications are processed.
The snag is the DIAC Information Form about Bridging Visas. A Spouse who is on a Bridging Visa A whilst waiting for an onshore Spouse Visa is fully entitled to Medicare. The form says that an applicant for a Parent visa is not. However, the form is aimed at people from all over the world.
It could be that the Oz/UK RHCA actually does preserve Medicare for British Aged Parent visa applicants regardless of the information in the DIAC form, but short of finding a British Parent who is actually in this position and discovering what his/her experience has been, I am stuck! I need to know about the practice/policy in SA specifically because that is where my friend's Parents would be living.
Any clues or help at all would be very gratefully snapped up because it seems to me that this is a massively important factor in whether or not my friend should try to force her Dad to fork out the money for Contributory Parent visas instead and be done with it.
Needless to say, in two six month visits to Adelaide, Dad has met other Brits who are on subclass 410 Retirement Visas. They have told him that they would not pay up for two Contributory Parent visas etc etc, so Dad is now bewildered, confused and upset. (Personally I could strangle some of his friends, but that is another matter!)
Hopefully somebody knows somebody and could ask.....
Very many thanks
Hi Gill(from another Gill)
Originally Posted by Gollywobbler
Just come across your message regarding getting parents into Oz and medicare side of things!
I have asked questions in the past but all very complicated!
I thought only way in for my parents to follow out would be on the Contributary parent visa!
But these seems so expensive and takes for ever(at 70 years old a lot to ask them to agree to follow you out let alone hand over an awful lot of money and then wait forever to get there)
We hope to be going ourselves this September(me,hubby and 4 young kids)and at last my parents have accepted it and are saying they want to follow us out asap(as if it was that simple)
They are horrified that they may have to wait a few years first for us to settle to be able to sponsor them them and they have to apply and have the never ending wait for the visa to be processed!
Is there any other options that they could come out on and apply at same time?
How different is the reirement visa?
What is the other visa you mentioned in your message as i have never heard of that one?
What is the longest period that they could come out at any stage until granted a permanent / temp visa?
They are not fit enough to be travelling back and forth!
This ruddy question continues to vex me and perplex me!
My friend and her Parents went for a walk on the beach about 8 weeks ago. They stopped at a cafe for a coffee and got chatting with another British family. They were told that the other family's father is in Adelaide waiting for an Aged Parent visa. Unfortunately my friend didn't think to ask whether he gets Medicare despite what the DIAC form says about it with Bridging Visas, nor did they get the family's phone number etc.
A week or two later, my friend's Dad insisted on going to the local DIAC office in Adelaide, his daughter in tow. The lady there told them to get a 90-day ETA next time Parents visit Adelaide, and then apply for an Aged Parent visa once they arrive. By then my friend will have lived there for over 2 years so that bit will not be an issue.
However, the DIAC lady said she is sure that the wait for an AP visa in SA ia only 6.5 years. She told them that each State gets given a quota of Aged Parent visas each year and the quota for SA is so generous that the wait is only 6.5 years. They also asked her about how readily DIAC would grant a Bridging Visa B so as to enable the Parents to go on cruises or a holiday outside Oz whilst they wait. The lady insisted no probs at all - they can leave Oz for up to 90 days each year.
Alarm bells rang all over my head. The lady was simply guessing, I reckon, and making the whole thing up as she went along. This desire not to disappoint a volunteer is understandable but it is NO HELP when real information is what is required!!
The phone numbers for the "ordinary" DIAC offices are numbers that only work if the call is made from inside Australia. I asked a friend in Perth - whose Parents are waiting for a Contributory Parent visa - to try to ring the DIAC office in Adelaide. He could not raise Adelaide but he did get through to the equivalent ofice in Melbourne. He was told that there is no State quota of AP visas and that the wait is 17 years. Which is in line with the information on the DIAC website.
I didn't ask Rick to ask about Bridging Visa B. I'm not convinced that it is possible to get that just because one fancies a family holiday somewhere. Please see here:
The last I heard from my friends in Adelaide was that they were gong to go back to the DIAC office in Adelaide and ask to see somebody more senior since the front office clerk is most unlikely to be anything other than junior. I have not heard any more from them since. I have not told them that the staff in Melbourne are contradicting the claims made in Adelaide because they are due to return to the UK in the next two to three weeks and I see no sense in anything that might ruin the last part of their visit. We can get to grips with this properly once the Parents are back in the UK it seems to me.
So it is all very puzzling. Any Dad who hears it as optimistically as the lady in Adelaide was telling it likely to insist on trying to save £40,000, plus when he has never really dealt with DIAC for real in his life, he is likely to believe whatever a junior clerk tells him even if her information is wrong from beginning to end.
The good thing, I guess, is that if they manage to get an Aged Parent application off the ground, they could always switch to a Contributory Aged Parent visa later if they so choose. The only thing they were told in Adelaide which even half convinces me was that the reason why most Parents will - if they can - pay up for the Contributory Parent or Contributory Aged Parent visa is because they want closure quickly. I couldn't agree more! But if the rest of the story that my friends were told is even half-true, the DIAC website must be speaking with a forked tongue and I do not think that this is the case.
With regard to how long it would be before your own parents could apply, please see the article below and please read the two MRT cases cited in it:
Once a CP application has been made, British Parents can automatically get a stay of 12 unbroken months in Oz on a subclass 676 tourist visa, which is here:
DIAC are happy if the Parents want to start settling into their new lives in Oz whilst they wait for the CPV to be processed. They were as good as gold about this with my own mother and I have not heard of them giving any British CPV applicant anything other than red carpet treatment once the CPV application is lodged.
British Parents of 70 or over have to get their own GP to produce a simple form of Medical Certificate, which is here:
They can ignore the stuff about medical insurance because the Reciprocal Health Care Agreement between the UK and Oz counts as medical insurance for the 676 visa. The RHCA covers all British tourist visa holders regardless of age. Please see here:
If a 12 month stay is not enough time for the CPV to be fully processed it is not a problem. Once the first 12 months visit ends they can nip to Auckland for 3-5 days and get a new 12 month 676 visa whilst there. The trick is to frontload their meds about 3-4 months before the 12 month visit is up, so that the Parents have meds clearance for permanent migration before they need the second tourist visa. That way they do not have to worry about finding a doctor to do tourist meds certs and it ensures that the red carpet stays red plus its pile remains deep and comfortable to walk on!
They might need a second lot of visa meds later on for the main visa but thet's life. The Auckland Shuffle does not save any money because it is a very expensive place to visit, I've heard (though I don't know for sure.) 5 days in Auckland including hotels, meals out etc plus the flight is probably no cheaper than return flights from the UK. But this route does enable the Parents to be with their children and grandchildren for most of the wait, which must count for something, I feel.
It is no longer possible to get a subclass 410 Retirement Visa because they were discontinued on 30th June 2005. On 1st July 2005 they were replaced by the subclass 405 Investor Retirement Visa, which is here:
Naffing expensive and in my opinion not worth it for Parents who will definitely be eligible for Contributory Parent visas instead. My friend's Parents are in their early 70s. So far they have done 1.5 round trips to Adelaide (2 once they get back to the UK in a couple of weeks.)
The first time, I looked at all the flight schedules and Singapore Airlines offered the shortest trip from take off in London to landing in Adelaide. I'm sure they still do, and it is an important consideration because her parents refuse to consider a stop over en route. This second time their daughter booked them on Cathay Pacific via Hong Kong. That puts an unnecessry dog leg into the route so it must involve a longer journey though I have not checked for the details. A look at an atlas reveals that it is not a good route from the UK to Adelaide in my view! Apparently the service was equally good on Cathay though.
Last edited by Gollywobbler; 23-04-2008 at 06:15 PM.