Thorpe1

Granted 804 Parent Bridging Visa

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    OMG I'm so excited. I applied for a subclass 804 Aged Parent Visa for my mum last week and today we receievd her bridging visa. Cant believe it happened so quickly. Now she can stay until they decide whether or not to grant her a visa. This could take 10 years so looks like she will be here for a while !!!

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    Thats brilliant did not know it could happen so quick... heard so many horror stories great for you and hope for others :-)

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    I applied for the onshore visa which means she has to be in the country when she applies for it AND when it is granted (Thats the final visa). They issue a 'bridging visa A' which allows her to remain in the country while a decision is made (about 10 years at the moment). She can leave Australia but needs to apply for a 'bridging visa B'. Dont know much about how that happens coz we haven't got there yet.

     

    Filled out forms without any assistance and paid the $2575 fee. There is another fee of about $1500 which you pay when decision has been made, just before they grnat full visa. Also a bond of $5000 has to be paid by the sponser (me) but not sure exactly when this will be. When they tell me I guess and I think it must be around the same time as the $1500 fee.

     

    So eligibility

     

    1. Have to have at least half your children living in Australia

    2. Have to be 64 for this visa

    3. Have to have a sponser who is a perm resident or citizen ( and settled)

     

    There may be more but thats the criteria we went on

     

    The most important thing is that you mum must be in the country when she applies and when it is finally granted

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    Guest mimasawrus

    Hey we are going to do the same thing for my mum next year as she fits all the criteria for the Aged Parent Visa it was great to hear your news about how quick the bridging visa came through thanks for the info it has really helped settle my mind

     

    Laura x

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    Wow this is exciting to read as i would love my Mum to join us out here sometime (if she ever plucks up the courage to live in such a hot place!).

     

    Can you tell me which visa your Mum was here on before being granted the bridging visa? Was it just a normal visitors/holiday visa? And also what benefits does she get whilst on the bridging visa - reciprocal health care etc?

     

    thanks

    :)

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    Hi All

     

    Please understand that I am NOT - in any way - trying to rain on anybody's parade.

     

    This happens to be a topic which I have researched pretty extensively and have kept up-to-date with during the last 4 years or so.

     

    Please study the thread below carefully and please read all of my posts on that thread because I have been updating it every time there is something new to report.

     

    http://www.pomsinadelaide.com/forum/adelaide-migration-issues/4509-cheap-parent-visas-part-i.html

     

    The idea is do-able provided that the right amount of care and caution are exercised.

     

    In my first post on the "Cheap Parent Visas" thread, I changed all the names and some of the details in order to protect the family concerned, who are dear friends of mine.

     

    However I can confirm that the whole family do now live in Adelaide. The lady's Parents applied for Aged Parent subclass 804 visas in about December 2009 and they received their acknowledgement letter (and confirmation that Bridging Visas would come into force automatically) within about 3 or 4 weeks of sending the AP 804 application to Perth.

     

    The Parents concerned are both in their 70s. They could not afford Contributory Parent visas instead. They are aware that it is likely to take around 18 years unless the current or a future Minister for Immi should double the quotas again in the future.

     

    They are also aware that I made a major fuss about the applicants for Parent 103 visas and Aged Parent 804 visas in my own recent submission to the Senate Inquiry about the proposed Cap & Kill Bill 2010. My submission is below if anyone wants to read it:

     

    Parliament of Australia: Senate: Committees: Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee: Migration Amendment (Visa Capping) Bill 2010 : Submissions Received

     

    (Blimus! I've just had a job to find my submission myself because I couldn't remember the number that it was given when it was published! It is Number 562 and you just have to scroll down and find it, please, because when the PDF file opens it does so without a URL at the top.)

     

    The wider link the the Inquiry is here:

     

    Parliament of Australia: Senate: Committees: Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee: Migration Amendment (Visa Capping) Bill 2010

     

    Earlier this week, I heard that when the Senate sat again on 28th September 2010, a Labor Party Whip called Senator Anne McEwen moved that the Committee's report on this Bill should be considered by the Senate. I heard that from a reliable source though I have not read the whole of Hansard for that date.

     

    As far as I can see, the Committee didn't reach any conclusions in the end. Here is their Report:

     

    Parliament of Australia:Senate:Committees:Legal and Constitutional Affairs Legislation Committee:Migration Amendment (Visa Capping) Bill 2010 [Provisions]

     

    Therefore I am not sure what producing an inconclusive report to the Senate would actually achieve. I am trying to find out about that and I don't want to add anything to the "Cheap Parent Visas" thread unless I hear something definite.

     

    I did garner quite a lot of support from Peter Mares, the journalist on the National Interest radio magazine:

     

    The National Interest - About

     

    He said at the time that he was also concerned about the plight of prospective Parents visa migrants when he interviewed various people in June 2010. He told me that his concern was limited only by the amount of air-time available, which is fair enough.

     

    New immigration powers cause concern - The National Interest - 4 June 2010

     

    Lots of people have asked Mr Mares to do another programme about this. He said that he is waiting for the new Minister for Immi to settle into the role etc and then he will invite Minister Bowen to discuss what he thinks about the proposed Bill.

     

    So I'm saying that the idea is not necessarily a bed of roses and that prospective Aged Parent Visa applicants and their children should not imagine that it is. I think that the idea is fine as long as people go into it with their eyes wide open, hence I am urging caution about the whole thing.

     

    As against that, if the Parents are getting on in years and the money to do something else is not available then it is the only real option that there is, so people shouldn't worry about it too much because one has to consider the best interests of the Parent concerned - in most cases, that comes down to doing the best thing for today and let tomorrow look after itself.

     

    Cheers

     

    Gill

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    OMG I'm so excited. I applied for a subclass 804 Aged Parent Visa for my mum last week and today we receievd her bridging visa. Cant believe it happened so quickly. Now she can stay until they decide whether or not to grant her a visa. This could take 10 years so looks like she will be here for a while !!!

     

    Hi Thorpe1

     

    Well done to you and well done to your Mum!! I am delighted to hear that the first part of the whole thing has been dealt with so quickly.

     

    With the family in Adelaide who are friends of mine, mentioned in my post above, the Parents know the possible score but they are living in Adelaide, with both of their children and all of their grandchildren. The whole family is just getting on with living a normal life. I'm thrilled about that because I think it is the only thing that they can realistically do.

     

    Very good luck to you and your Mum, hon. I am keeping fingers, toes and eyes crossed that everything will be OK for all of the families involved. My own belief - fiercely - is that the applicants for Aged Parent 804 visas and Parent 103 visas should both be ring-fenced and protected if any new legislation comes in.

     

    Cheers

     

    Gill

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    Hi Gill,

     

    I found you reply to my post by accident as I dont have the chance to log on everyday. I have read your submission and to be honest I had NO IDEA what was going on. I'm not sure if it is a good or bad thing that I know now !!!!

     

    Anyway I have decided not to worry my mum with all the What Ifs as she will drive herself mad with worry. I am an only child and therefore my two girls are her only grandchildren. Mum has just turned 64 and although she is not sick she has the usual aches and pains no one ever dies of (her words not mine). I think I am going to be as philosophical about it as possible and be grateful for whatever time she has here. Maybe that will be many years and maybe not !!!

     

    I am amazed at your dedication to thiis subject and will continue to read your updates.

     

    Cheers

     

    Karen

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    Hi Gill,

     

    I found you reply to my post by accident as I dont have the chance to log on everyday. I have read your submission and to be honest I had NO IDEA what was going on. I'm not sure if it is a good or bad thing that I know now !!!!

     

    Anyway I have decided not to worry my mum with all the What Ifs as she will drive herself mad with worry. I am an only child and therefore my two girls are her only grandchildren. Mum has just turned 64 and although she is not sick she has the usual aches and pains no one ever dies of (her words not mine). I think I am going to be as philosophical about it as possible and be grateful for whatever time she has here. Maybe that will be many years and maybe not !!!

     

    I am amazed at your dedication to thiis subject and will continue to read your updates.

     

    Cheers

     

    Karen

     

    Hi Karen

     

    In your shoes, I wouldn't worry your mother with any of it either.

     

    I heard a couple of days ago that unofficially - completely unofficially - senior DIAC people are saying that any new Cap & Kill legislation is very unlikely to affect anybody who is already living in Australia on Bridging Visas, having applied for onshore migration visas. I think the officials realise that there would be an almighty fuss if they ever tried to use retrospectively-acting legislation in such a way that it would cause an adverse impact to anybody who was already living in Oz at the relevant time. Federal MPs would be forced to step in because too many of their constituents would refuse to vote for them again unless they stepped in and acted etc.

     

    My mother has a Contributory Parent Visa, granted in 2006. I reckon that it is up to me to "give something back" by helping all the prospective Parent visa holders and their children who are following on behind us.

     

    Now I think that the pressure will be on successive governments to do something less inhumane than demanding that people who are not in the first flush of youth should hang about in limbo for around 18 years. I'm thinking about how to co-ordinate and then organise the biggest fuss possible about this, out in Oz. (I'm in the UK but my sister and mother both live in Perth.)

     

    Cheers

     

    Gill

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    Guest ben&sharon

    Us too!! Mum got her bridging visa this morning. We're well aware that it's not a guarantee but we'll worry about problems if and when they happen. At least it gives her the means to stay for the foreseeable. :) I'll be keeping track of this thread and others in case anything changes - thanks Gill.

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    Guest Nannadi

    Hi Gill,

     

    First of all, thank you so much for all the time and hard work that you put in to help people like myself who want to settle in Oz.

    Hi All

     

    Please understand that I am NOT - in any way - trying to rain on anybody's parade.

     

    This happens to be a topic which I have researched pretty extensively and have kept up-to-date with during the last 4 years or so.

     

    Please study the thread below carefully and please read all of my posts on that thread because I have been updating it every time there is something new to report.

     

    http://www.pomsinadelaide.com/forum/adelaide-migration-issues/4509-cheap-parent-visas-part-i.html

     

    The idea is do-able provided that the right amount of care and caution are exercised.

     

    In my first post on the "Cheap Parent Visas" thread, I changed all the names and some of the details in order to protect the family concerned, who are dear friends of mine.

     

    However I can confirm that the whole family do now live in Adelaide. The lady's Parents applied for Aged Parent subclass 804 visas in about December 2009 and they received their acknowledgement letter (and confirmation that Bridging Visas would come into force automatically) within about 3 or 4 weeks of sending the AP 804 application to Perth.

     

    The Parents concerned are both in their 70s. They could not afford Contributory Parent visas instead. They are aware that it is likely to take around 18 years unless the current or a future Minister for Immi should double the quotas again in the future.

     

    They are also aware that I made a major fuss about the applicants for Parent 103 visas and Aged Parent 804 visas in my own recent submission to the Senate Inquiry about the proposed Cap & Kill Bill 2010. My submission is below if anyone wants to read it:

     

    Parliament of Australia: Senate: Committees: Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee: Migration Amendment (Visa Capping) Bill 2010 : Submissions Received

     

    (Blimus! I've just had a job to find my submission myself because I couldn't remember the number that it was given when it was published! It is Number 562 and you just have to scroll down and find it, please, because when the PDF file opens it does so without a URL at the top.)

     

    The wider link the the Inquiry is here:

     

    Parliament of Australia: Senate: Committees: Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee: Migration Amendment (Visa Capping) Bill 2010

     

    Earlier this week, I heard that when the Senate sat again on 28th September 2010, a Labor Party Whip called Senator Anne McEwen moved that the Committee's report on this Bill should be considered by the Senate. I heard that from a reliable source though I have not read the whole of Hansard for that date.

     

    As far as I can see, the Committee didn't reach any conclusions in the end. Here is their Report:

     

    Parliament of Australia:Senate:Committees:Legal and Constitutional Affairs Legislation Committee:Migration Amendment (Visa Capping) Bill 2010 [Provisions]

     

    Therefore I am not sure what producing an inconclusive report to the Senate would actually achieve. I am trying to find out about that and I don't want to add anything to the "Cheap Parent Visas" thread unless I hear something definite.

     

    I did garner quite a lot of support from Peter Mares, the journalist on the National Interest radio magazine:

     

    The National Interest - About

     

    He said at the time that he was also concerned about the plight of prospective Parents visa migrants when he interviewed various people in June 2010. He told me that his concern was limited only by the amount of air-time available, which is fair enough.

     

    New immigration powers cause concern - The National Interest - 4 June 2010

     

    Lots of people have asked Mr Mares to do another programme about this. He said that he is waiting for the new Minister for Immi to settle into the role etc and then he will invite Minister Bowen to discuss what he thinks about the proposed Bill.

     

    So I'm saying that the idea is not necessarily a bed of roses and that prospective Aged Parent Visa applicants and their children should not imagine that it is. I think that the idea is fine as long as people go into it with their eyes wide open, hence I am urging caution about the whole thing.

     

    As against that, if the Parents are getting on in years and the money to do something else is not available then it is the only real option that there is, so people shouldn't worry about it too much because one has to consider the best interests of the Parent concerned - in most cases, that comes down to doing the best thing for today and let tomorrow look after itself.

     

    Cheers

     

    Gill

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    Guest Nannadi

    Hi Gill,

     

    First of all, thank you so much for all the time and hard work that you put in to help people like myself who want to settle in Oz.

     

    Let me first give you some background - I'll try to be brief - which I believe will be of interest to several forum members. I have an only child, a son, who married an Australian girl and has been settled in Oz for around 20 years now. I live on his property in Queensland's fantastic Sunshine Coast. My late husband and I naively thought that when we retired, we would go to Oz to live 'just like that!'. Unfortunately, six months befrore we were due to retire, he died. Nevertheless I decided that I would come on my own. Of course, I soon found out that I would have to go on a waiting list of around ten years and wait in the UK for a permanent resident's visa; I was devastated.

     

    Fortunately, I worked for the Lord Chamberlain at the time and through him, I received a 'phone call advising me that were I to go to Oz for a 'holiday' and while there dedide that I would like to stay, I could apply for residency and wait in the queue there. This is what I ded and now according to the electronic queue data on the web - I assume that everybody knows about this facility - I am now mumber 350 in the queue. Accordingly, I hope to have my permanent residency sometime next year. Hooray!!!

     

    Yes it has been a long wait but to be honest, I have not found a lot of differences in being here waiting for a permanent residency especially using the reciprocal agreement with the UK for medical costs, other than not getting seniors rate for prescriptions. By the way, I waited seven years to apply for a senior citizen's card as I though I would not be eligible but apparenly, although I am not a permanent resident, I am still considered a resident and I now have a card which I find saves me a lot of money.

     

    Sorry to be so long winded but I hope this will give encouragement to others.

     

    Thank you too Gill for writing to the senate committee re the capping of visas. This proposed bill must be a great worry to many people although hopefully not myself as I am so near to the top of the list now.

     

    Cheers Nanadi

     

    Hi All

     

    Please understand that I am NOT - in any way - trying to rain on anybody's parade.

     

    This happens to be a topic which I have researched pretty extensively and have kept up-to-date with during the last 4 years or so.

     

    Please study the thread below carefully and please read all of my posts on that thread because I have been updating it every time there is something new to report.

     

    http://www.pomsinadelaide.com/forum/adelaide-migration-issues/4509-cheap-parent-visas-part-i.html

     

    The idea is do-able provided that the right amount of care and caution are exercised.

     

    In my first post on the "Cheap Parent Visas" thread, I changed all the names and some of the details in order to protect the family concerned, who are dear friends of mine.

     

    However I can confirm that the whole family do now live in Adelaide. The lady's Parents applied for Aged Parent subclass 804 visas in about December 2009 and they received their acknowledgement letter (and confirmation that Bridging Visas would come into force automatically) within about 3 or 4 weeks of sending the AP 804 application to Perth.

     

    The Parents concerned are both in their 70s. They could not afford Contributory Parent visas instead. They are aware that it is likely to take around 18 years unless the current or a future Minister for Immi should double the quotas again in the future.

     

    They are also aware that I made a major fuss about the applicants for Parent 103 visas and Aged Parent 804 visas in my own recent submission to the Senate Inquiry about the proposed Cap & Kill Bill 2010. My submission is below if anyone wants to read it:

     

    Parliament of Australia: Senate: Committees: Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee: Migration Amendment (Visa Capping) Bill 2010 : Submissions Received

     

    (Blimus! I've just had a job to find my submission myself because I couldn't remember the number that it was given when it was published! It is Number 562 and you just have to scroll down and find it, please, because when the PDF file opens it does so without a URL at the top.)

     

    The wider link the the Inquiry is here:

     

    Parliament of Australia: Senate: Committees: Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee: Migration Amendment (Visa Capping) Bill 2010

     

    Earlier this week, I heard that when the Senate sat again on 28th September 2010, a Labor Party Whip called Senator Anne McEwen moved that the Committee's report on this Bill should be considered by the Senate. I heard that from a reliable source though I have not read the whole of Hansard for that date.

     

    As far as I can see, the Committee didn't reach any conclusions in the end. Here is their Report:

     

    Parliament of Australia:Senate:Committees:Legal and Constitutional Affairs Legislation Committee:Migration Amendment (Visa Capping) Bill 2010 [Provisions]

     

    Therefore I am not sure what producing an inconclusive report to the Senate would actually achieve. I am trying to find out about that and I don't want to add anything to the "Cheap Parent Visas" thread unless I hear something definite.

     

    I did garner quite a lot of support from Peter Mares, the journalist on the National Interest radio magazine:

     

    The National Interest - About

     

    He said at the time that he was also concerned about the plight of prospective Parents visa migrants when he interviewed various people in June 2010. He told me that his concern was limited only by the amount of air-time available, which is fair enough.

     

    New immigration powers cause concern - The National Interest - 4 June 2010

     

    Lots of people have asked Mr Mares to do another programme about this. He said that he is waiting for the new Minister for Immi to settle into the role etc and then he will invite Minister Bowen to discuss what he thinks about the proposed Bill.

     

    So I'm saying that the idea is not necessarily a bed of roses and that prospective Aged Parent Visa applicants and their children should not imagine that it is. I think that the idea is fine as long as people go into it with their eyes wide open, hence I am urging caution about the whole thing.

     

    As against that, if the Parents are getting on in years and the money to do something else is not available then it is the only real option that there is, so people shouldn't worry about it too much because one has to consider the best interests of the Parent concerned - in most cases, that comes down to doing the best thing for today and let tomorrow look after itself.

     

    Cheers

     

    Gill

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    Hi Nanadi

     

    Thanks very much indeed for the information that you have provided.

     

    With 350 people ahead of you in the Queue, your visa should be granted soon after 1st July 2012, since 300 Aged Parent visas will be available from that date onwards and the Parents Visa Centre tend to get all the visas granted as quickly as possible. (Personally, I think/hope that you might get the visa during 2011 instead. The Queue Calculator is pretty rough and ready and one does get last-minute glitches with some of the applications etc, so with a bit of luck there is some flexibility in the number 350.)

     

    As a matter of interest, when did you apply, please? What year?

     

    Sorry to be so long winded but I hope this will give encouragement to others.

    You are not being long-winded. On the contrary, I want to pick your brains because hardly any Aged Parent visa applicants ever say very much, so I tend to fall upon someone like you and to find out as much as I can from you!

     

    Yes it has been a long wait but to be honest, I have not found a lot of differences in being here waiting for a permanent residency especially using the reciprocal agreement with the UK for medical costs, other than not getting seniors rate for prescriptions.

    1. Do you mean that you haven't been able to get cheaper prescriptions because you haven't been eligible for Centrelink's Commonwealth Seniors Health Card? I assume that this is what you do mean but I just want to double-check with you if you wouldn't mind.

     

    2. I'm interested to hear that getting one or more temporary Medicare Cards has not been a problem for you so you have been able to take advantage of the reciprocal health care agreement between Oz and the UK.

     

    Early in 2009, I swapped e-mails with a guy in Brisbane. His father had recently been widowed and the son in Brisbane was the only child. After his mother's death, he and his wife had got the chap's father out to Oz for a holiday and it was clear that he wanted to stay. So the son asked around locally. DIAC told him that Father could make an onshore application for an Aged Parent visa so that wasn't a problem.

     

    However the son said that he had been to the local Medicare office, who had told him that Father would only be able to take advantage of the OZ./UK Health Care Agreement for a further 3 years. ????? I suggested that the son should contact Medicare's HQ in Canberra and check this out properly because it sounded to me as if the local staff in Brisbane were simply guessing and that they were mistaken. Unfortunately, the son didn't come back to me with an update so I don't know whether he queried it or what he was told.

     

    The fact that you haven't had any problems does suggest that the Medicare person in Brisbane was mistaken about this.

     

    3. I am delighted to hear that the Bridging Visa has not made any material differences to you. My friends in Adelaide said that they had met another couple who were waiting for Aged Parent visas and that this other couple had also reported that which visa they were on did not affect their day-to-day lives in any way.

     

    My friends have been in Adelaide on Bridging Visas for about 10 months now. They are also saying that the actual type of visa has not made the slightest difference to their own lives. They had had two six month visits to Adelaide and two three month visits before they eventually made up their minds to go for it. They reckon that life is treating them no differently from the way it did during their earlier tourist visits except that they no longer feel that the clock is ticking towards a time when they have to get back on a plane.

     

    I waited seven years to apply for a senior citizen's card as I thought I would not be eligible but apparenly, although I am not a permanent resident, I am still considered a resident and I now have a card which I find saves me a lot of money.

    I take it you mean the Seniors Card?

     

    Welcome to Seniors Card

     

    One of the fathers in Adelaide told me about this card initially, not long before Mum got her CPV in 2006. I asked my sister who asked her Aussie mother in law. It was decided to get one of these cards for Mum as soon as possible. Mum is in Perth and she had PR before we got cracking on the idea of a Seniors Card for her, so I don't know what the Policy is in WA towards people on Bridging Visas.

     

    However I've heard that in SA they give Seniors Cards to applicants for Aged Parent visas. As with your own State (QLD?) apparently the people in SA take the view that the Parent will be living in Oz indefinitely so they don't worry about the visa involved. I've heard that they are fussy in NSW. I don't have any feedback from anyone who has tried any of the other States, though. I reckon that the solution is to ask because the worst that the Card people can do is to say "No."

     

    Like you, my mother says that her Seniors Card has saved her a lot of money and I have not come across a single person who has a Seniors Card and says otherwise, so I'm with you about this. It is well worth getting these cards.

     

    In conclusion, I think that your post is a god-send because it will provide far more encouragement than you might realise. Far more. A LOT of people read the forums avidly and get ideas from them without ever saying anything themselves.

     

    For myself, I'm not worrying as much as I did at the time when I made my Submission to the Senate Committee about Parents. It does seem that DIAC's senior officials have been saying (albeit unofficially) that they would never use any Cap & Kill legislation to try to attack anybody who is already living in Oz. I have this information second-hand, from an extremely able Registered Migration Agent in Oz, who has been talking to the DIAC officials. The RMA would not say this unless he was 100% sure that there is nothing to worry about, so I feel greatly reassured to hear this promising news.

     

    Cheers

     

    Gill

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    Guest ben&sharon

    1. Do you mean that you haven't been able to get cheaper prescriptions because you haven't been eligible for Centrelink's Commonwealth Seniors Health Card? I assume that this is what you do mean but I just want to double-check with you if you wouldn't mind.

     

     

    Hiya,

     

    I just want to add a little note with regard to the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card which may or may not be useful to other prospective longer term visitors - my mother was granted one of these whilst still on her tourist visa - before she even applied for the 804. My understanding is that the key was residence in Australia - she has been here since April and had a visa which allowed her to stay until January. The form includes detailed questions regarding passport number and visa type, so they had all of her information available to them when they made the decision! To be honest, she sent off the form without expecting a result but it turned up good.

     

    Sharon.

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    I telephoned centrelink (Seniors Dept) and spoke with a woman. Not sure if it was local or a centre but she looked up the eligiblity for the card and said that the applicant (my mum) had to be a resident. I explained the situation to her and she said that they would need to test her eligibility. She did say that she just sends out the forms from there so I'm guessing she might fall in the category of 'if you don't know make it up' much like the advice regarding the RHA being only 3 years.

     

    Anyway I will fill out the forms and keep you updated. If she can get one of these cards it will be a HUGE bonus to her. At the moment she spends about $130 a month on medication. Not even for anything serious !!!!

     

    Ben/Sharon - I would be interested to make contact with you for advice re this as you are in adelaide. Also if your mum is looking for any company it might be good for them to get together

     

    Cheers

     

    Karen

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    Hi Karen and Sharon

     

    I am intrigued. These Commonwealth Seniors Health Cards are definitely worthwhile. My mother has had one for a couple of years now because she moved to Oz on her CPV 143 in October 2006 and stayed there for 2 complete years, so as to forestall any RRV problems later.

     

    Promptly in October 2008, my sister applied for and obtained a Commonwealth Seniors Health Card for Mum. The price of filling her prescriptions has plummeted and since she takes several different pills each day for several different minor but chronic ailments, this saving has been immensely valuable to Mum.

     

    I was under the impression that one has to have a visa confirming Permanent Residence before it is possible to get anything from Centrelink. However, there is a Tribunal via which it is possible to appeal against adverse decisions by Centrelink's staff and it is also possible to apply to the Courts for Judicial Review if one thinks that Centrelink's staff have made an error of Law. I don't know which Appeals Tribunal one would go to or which Courts one would apply to for Judicial Review.

     

    It is 100% possible that I've been running with the purely Policy impression that the Aussie Government has wanted me to have. I have no idea what the actual Law about this question might be and no idea how to find out.

     

    I agree with Karen. I think one has to be very wary of officials who guess and simply invent whatever answer seems reasonable to the official at the time. I reckon that the person who said that the RHCA is only available for 3 years was definitely only guessing and was almost certainly wrong.

     

    It could well be that the wording of the Statute that underpins the arrangements for /entitlement to the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card is woolly, obscure and unclear. Much of Australia's Parliamentary draughtsmanship is of shockingly poor quality so yet another example of poor Parliamentary drafting, leading to a decision by the Court somewhere, would not surprise me in the least.

     

    So it could be that the Centrelink staff dealing with Sharon's Mum's case simply made a mistake but it is equally possible that there is a decision of the Court kicking around somewhere, and that the people dealing with Sharon's Mum's application know about the Court's decision, I reckon.

     

    If both of you are in Adelaide, I would be immensely grateful if you could please get together and if you would also be very kind and involve me as well? If we can definitely advise the applicants for Aged Parent sc 804 visas that they should apply for - and should be able to get - Commonwealth Seniors Health Cards then this is definitely an idea that they ought to pursue.

     

    I will see what I can find out from some Aussie solicitors who might be able to show me where to look, to see whether we can discover the relevant Law. I will let both of you know if I find anything out.

     

    In the meantime, I don't know whether the link below will be helpful or not but 3 heads are definitely better than one in trying to work all this out.

     

    Social Security and Family Assistance Legislation and Policy Guides

     

    The Guides are very good. Much better than the legislation itself, often.

     

    I'm not sure whether the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card comes under Social Security or Family Assistance but with a bit of luck, we might be able to work the whole thing out.

     

    Sharon - thank you very much indeed for raising this very valuable question. :notworthy:

     

    Cheers

     

    Gill

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    Guest Nannadi
    Hi Nanadi

     

    Thanks very much indeed for the information that you have provided.

     

    With 350 people ahead of you in the Queue, your visa should be granted soon after 1st July 2012, since 300 Aged Parent visas will be available from that date onwards and the Parents Visa Centre tend to get all the visas granted as quickly as possible. (Personally, I think/hope that you might get the visa during 2011 instead. The Queue Calculator is pretty rough and ready and one does get last-minute glitches with some of the applications etc, so with a bit of luck there is some flexibility in the number 350.)

     

    As a matter of interest, when did you apply, please? What year?

     

     

    You are not being long-winded. On the contrary, I want to pick your brains because hardly any Aged Parent visa applicants ever say very much, so I tend to fall upon someone like you and to find out as much as I can from you!

     

     

    1. Do you mean that you haven't been able to get cheaper prescriptions because you haven't been eligible for Centrelink's Commonwealth Seniors Health Card? I assume that this is what you do mean but I just want to double-check with you if you wouldn't mind.

     

    2. I'm interested to hear that getting one or more temporary Medicare Cards has not been a problem for you so you have been able to take advantage of the reciprocal health care agreement between Oz and the UK.

     

    Early in 2009, I swapped e-mails with a guy in Brisbane. His father had recently been widowed and the son in Brisbane was the only child. After his mother's death, he and his wife had got the chap's father out to Oz for a holiday and it was clear that he wanted to stay. So the son asked around locally. DIAC told him that Father could make an onshore application for an Aged Parent visa so that wasn't a problem.

     

    However the son said that he had been to the local Medicare office, who had told him that Father would only be able to take advantage of the OZ./UK Health Care Agreement for a further 3 years. ????? I suggested that the son should contact Medicare's HQ in Canberra and check this out properly because it sounded to me as if the local staff in Brisbane were simply guessing and that they were mistaken. Unfortunately, the son didn't come back to me with an update so I don't know whether he queried it or what he was told.

     

    The fact that you haven't had any problems does suggest that the Medicare person in Brisbane was mistaken about this.

     

    3. I am delighted to hear that the Bridging Visa has not made any material differences to you. My friends in Adelaide said that they had met another couple who were waiting for Aged Parent visas and that this other couple had also reported that which visa they were on did not affect their day-to-day lives in any way.

     

    My friends have been in Adelaide on Bridging Visas for about 10 months now. They are also saying that the actual type of visa has not made the slightest difference to their own lives. They had had two six month visits to Adelaide and two three month visits before they eventually made up their minds to go for it. They reckon that life is treating them no differently from the way it did during their earlier tourist visits except that they no longer feel that the clock is ticking towards a time when they have to get back on a plane.

     

     

    I take it you mean the Seniors Card?

     

    Welcome to Seniors Card

     

    One of the fathers in Adelaide told me about this card initially, not long before Mum got her CPV in 2006. I asked my sister who asked her Aussie mother in law. It was decided to get one of these cards for Mum as soon as possible. Mum is in Perth and she had PR before we got cracking on the idea of a Seniors Card for her, so I don't know what the Policy is in WA towards people on Bridging Visas.

     

    However I've heard that in SA they give Seniors Cards to applicants for Aged Parent visas. As with your own State (QLD?) apparently the people in SA take the view that the Parent will be living in Oz indefinitely so they don't worry about the visa involved. I've heard that they are fussy in NSW. I don't have any feedback from anyone who has tried any of the other States, though. I reckon that the solution is to ask because the worst that the Card people can do is to say "No."

     

    Like you, my mother says that her Seniors Card has saved her a lot of money and I have not come across a single person who has a Seniors Card and says otherwise, so I'm with you about this. It is well worth getting these cards.

     

    In conclusion, I think that your post is a god-send because it will provide far more encouragement than you might realise. Far more. A LOT of people read the forums avidly and get ideas from them without ever saying anything themselves.

     

    For myself, I'm not worrying as much as I did at the time when I made my Submission to the Senate Committee about Parents. It does seem that DIAC's senior officials have been saying (albeit unofficially) that they would never use any Cap & Kill legislation to try to attack anybody who is already living in Oz. I have this information second-hand, from an extremely able Registered Migration Agent in Oz, who has been talking to the DIAC officials. The RMA would not say this unless he was 100% sure that there is nothing to worry about, so I feel greatly reassured to hear this promising news.

     

    Cheers

     

    Gill

     

    Hi again Gill,

     

    I am so pleased that you think that my post will be helpful to others.

     

    I arrived in Oz at the beginning of 2000- what a great way to start the new millennium - and put in my application for permanent residency in August 2003. I can't remember why I waited so long to apply as that had been my intention from the start, I am seventy now and my memory is not what it was!! I had even moved all my furniture over here in 2000 and although I was only supposed to be here on holiday, there were no questions asked. Of course with hindsight, I now wish that I had put in my application sooner as I would then have been a resident by now.

     

    I was granted a Medicare card more or less as soon as I arrived here, we were living in NSW at the time. The card is slightly different to an Australian resident's Medicare card in that it has 'visitor' in the upper right hand corner. I have been led to understand that this card does not cover the reduced senior's cost of prescription medicine although it seems to cover everything else, hospital treatment, visits to the GP, specialists etc.etc. I have epilepsy, controlled by medication, and my drugs cost me around $200 per month but if this is the only drawback to not being a permanent resident, I can't really complain although my only income is my UK state pension. I was slightly concerned about the epilepsy re the health check included with the application but had no problems at all with it. I did at one time enquire about a senior's health care card and was told that I would not be entitled to one until I had permanent residency. I am assuming that a senior's card and a senior's health care card are two different things. A couple of times when I have had to renew the Medicare card, staff have told me that I have not been entitled to it. Upon assuring them that I have had a Medicare card for several years now, they have said they would 'look into it ' and a few days later I have received one in the post. This is now Queensland I'm talking about. Maybe I have been given the wrong information about a healthcare card as Sharon seems to think.

     

    It would be wonderful to find that I could get my prescriptions at senior's rates but also a bit galling as I must have spent a fortune on drugs in the last ten years!

    \

    I have made three trips back to the UK since I have been here, I have a sister and a 98 year old mother there but I absolutely love living in Oz, the only two things I miss are family and Marks and Spencers!!!

     

    It would be nice to think that I may get my residency next year but even if I have to wait till 2011; as I have said before, my lifestyle is not really very different at this time

     

    Again Gill, your many posts are very informative and give reassurance to all of us - thank you

     

    Dianne

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    Guest Nannadi
    Hi Karen and Sharon

     

    I am intrigued. These Commonwealth Seniors Health Cards are definitely worthwhile. My mother has had one for a couple of years now because she moved to Oz on her CPV 143 in October 2006 and stayed there for 2 complete years, so as to forestall any RRV problems later.

     

    Promptly in October 2008, my sister applied for and obtained a Commonwealth Seniors Health Card for Mum. The price of filling her prescriptions has plummeted and since she takes several different pills each day for several different minor but chronic ailments, this saving has been immensely valuable to Mum.

     

    I was under the impression that one has to have a visa confirming Permanent Residence before it is possible to get anything from Centrelink. However, there is a Tribunal via which it is possible to appeal against adverse decisions by Centrelink's staff and it is also possible to apply to the Courts for Judicial Review if one thinks that Centrelink's staff have made an error of Law. I don't know which Appeals Tribunal one would go to or which Courts one would apply to for Judicial Review.

     

    It is 100% possible that I've been running with the purely Policy impression that the Aussie Government has wanted me to have. I have no idea what the actual Law about this question might be and no idea how to find out.

     

    I agree with Karen. I think one has to be very wary of officials who guess and simply invent whatever answer seems reasonable to the official at the time. I reckon that the person who said that the RHCA is only available for 3 years was definitely only guessing and was almost certainly wrong.

     

    It could well be that the wording of the Statute that underpins the arrangements for /entitlement to the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card is woolly, obscure and unclear. Much of Australia's Parliamentary draughtsmanship is of shockingly poor quality so yet another example of poor Parliamentary drafting, leading to a decision by the Court somewhere, would not surprise me in the least.

     

    So it could be that the Centrelink staff dealing with Sharon's Mum's case simply made a mistake but it is equally possible that there is a decision of the Court kicking around somewhere, and that the people dealing with Sharon's Mum's application know about the Court's decision, I reckon.

     

    If both of you are in Adelaide, I would be immensely grateful if you could please get together and if you would also be very kind and involve me as well? If we can definitely advise the applicants for Aged Parent sc 804 visas that they should apply for - and should be able to get - Commonwealth Seniors Health Cards then this is definitely an idea that they ought to pursue.

     

    I will see what I can find out from some Aussie solicitors who might be able to show me where to look, to see whether we can discover the relevant Law. I will let both of you know if I find anything out.

     

    In the meantime, I don't know whether the link below will be helpful or not but 3 heads are definitely better than one in trying to work all this out.

     

    Social Security and Family Assistance Legislation and Policy Guides

     

    The Guides are very good. Much better than the legislation itself, often.

     

    I'm not sure whether the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card comes under Social Security or Family Assistance but with a bit of luck, we might be able to work the whole thing out.

     

    Sharon - thank you very much indeed for raising this very valuable question. :notworthy:

     

    Cheers

     

    Gill

     

    Hello again,

     

    I have just read the posts from Karen, Sharon and yourself re the health cards. I must say it is looking more and more likely that I have spent a small fortune on prescription drugs quite needlessly. It does seem a very grey area and I seem to have opened a whole can of worms!

     

    I don't feel that prospective immigrants especially those of us of ' a certain age!' are being given nearly enough information or is there maybe some sort of 'conspiracy' by the government to deter us:arghh:

     

    I agree with Gill, it would be useful if we could get together on this and try to find out where we stand

     

    Cheers, Dianne

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    Hiya,

     

    I just want to add a little note with regard to the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card which may or may not be useful to other prospective longer term visitors - my mother was granted one of these whilst still on her tourist visa - before she even applied for the 804. My understanding is that the key was residence in Australia - she has been here since April and had a visa which allowed her to stay until January. The form includes detailed questions regarding passport number and visa type, so they had all of her information available to them when they made the decision! To be honest, she sent off the form without expecting a result but it turned up good.

     

    Sharon.

     

    Hi Sharon

     

    Just to be certain about this, are you 100% sure that you are not mixing anything up between the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card, administered by Centrelink, and the ordinary Seniors Card which is administered via the State Government in each State?

     

    Centrelink's Commonwealth Seniors Health Card is here:

     

    Commonwealth Seniors Health Card

     

    The Claim Form for it is Form SA296.1007 and is here:

     

    http://www.centrelink.gov.au/internet/internet.nsf/filestores/sa296_1007/$file/sa296_1007en.pdf

     

    The ordinary Seniors Card is a different animal altogether, and is below:

     

    Welcome to Seniors Card

     

    You do not necessarily have to be a Permanent Resident of Australia in order to be eligible for an ordinary Seniors Card. The Seniors Card people in SA certainly take the view that one merely has to be "permanently resident" in Australia in order to claim an ordinary Seniors Card in SA. They use the term "permanently resident" in its literal sense whereas Centrelink mean the term "Permanent Resident of Australia" in its technical, legal sense as I understand this.

     

    I am hoping to double-check this with you because the Centrelink website seems to be definite about the notion that your Mum is not entitled to a Commonwealth Seniors Health Card, so I am puzzled about the whole thing.

     

    I might well be making assumptions based on what the Centrelink website says rather than what the relevant legislation and case law say about this, but I do think it is strange that the Centrelink website seems to be so definite if the Centrelink website is also definitely wrong about this. I'm puzzled because the Centrelink website does seem to be so black & white about the whole thing.

     

    If Centrelink have made a mistake, I believe that they are required to live with their mistake. They are not allowed to use incompetence & error by their own staff as an excuse via which to disadvantage a CSH Card holder.

     

    Since my earlier reply to you & Karen, I have managed to track the whole thing down to the Social Security Act 1991 (as amended) [continually.]

     

    1.2.8 Concession Cards - Description

     

    The legislation is tortuous. I assume that there must be solicitors and barristers who specialise in this field of law because understanding it all properly definitely isn't a job for a non-specialist. I don't have time at the moment to try to understand the relevant legislation and even when I have more time I am not confident that I would understand it.

     

    Therefore the common-sense, pragmatic solution to start with is to double check with you about exactly which one of the two possible cards you mean, please.

     

    Many thanks

     

    Gill

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    Thank you so much for all this information.

    My parents arrive next month for 3 months (again!) and they are looking at spending much longer here in the future.

    It is so useful being able to explore all the ins and outs and the wealth of info is invaluable!.

     

    Tamara

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    Guest Nannadi
    Hello again,

     

    I have just read the posts from Karen, Sharon and yourself re the health cards. I must say it is looking more and more likely that I have spent a small fortune on prescription drugs quite needlessly. It does seem a very grey area and I seem to have opened a whole can of worms!

     

    I don't feel that prospective immigrants especially those of us of ' a certain age!' are being given nearly enough information or is there maybe some sort of 'conspiracy' by the government to deter us:arghh:

     

    I agree with Gill, it would be useful if we could get together on this and try to find out where we stand

     

    Cheers, Dianne

     

    Did you see my previous longish post Gill it seems to have got out of sync! Anyhow I hope that it answered most of your questions and sheds some light on these card mix ups!!

     

    cheers, Dianne:goofy:

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