This article was written by Fernanda Dahlstrom - Content Editor - Brisbane

Fernanda Dahlstrom has a Bachelor of Laws, a Bachelor of Arts and a Master of Arts. She also completed a Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice at the College of Law in Victoria. Fernanda practised law for eight years, working in criminal defence, child protection and domestic violence law in the Northern Territory and in family law in Queensland.

Child Visa (Subclass 101)


The Child Visa (Subclass 101) allows a dependent child to enter Australia to live with a parent or parents who are Australian citizens or permanent residents. The visa is available to biological children as well as adopted children and stepchildren. The applicant dependent child must be sponsored by a parent or the parent’s spouse and must be outside of Australia when they apply. The Visa allows the holder to live in Australia indefinitely, to receive Medicare, to work and study here, to sponsor relative to come here and apply for Australian citizenship.

This article sets out who is eligible for a Child Visa and what rights the visa confers.

Who is a child?

For the purposes of this Visa, a child is a person who:

  • is under 18;
  • is over 18 but under 25 and studying full time;
  • is over 18 and has a disability.

A child who is over 18 and under 25 is eligible for a child visa if they are financially dependent on their parent more than any other person and are studying full time when the decision is made on the visa application. They cannot be working full time as well as studying.

For a child over 18 who has a disability to be eligible for a child visa, they must have lost all or part of their bodily functions or mental functions. They must also be unable to work full time.

Child must be single

To be eligible for this Visa, a person must be unmarried and must never have been married, engaged or partnered in a de facto relationship.

Health requirement 

An applicant must meet the same health requirements as most visa applicants. This means they must not have any disease or condition that represents a significant health care or community service cost to the Australian community or which is likely to limit the access that Australians have to health and community services which are in short supply.

Character test and the Child Visa

A child who is 16 or older and applies for this Visa must pass the character test.  This means they must not have a substantial criminal record, belong to a criminal organisation or have been convicted of particular offences set out in Section 501.

Debt

If the child or a member of their family owes money to the Australian government, a formal arrangement must have been made for the money to be paid back before the visa is granted.

Australian values statement

If the child is 18 or older, they must read the publication Life in Australia and sign the Australian Values Statement, agreeing to obey Australia’s laws and respect the Australian way of life, including the rule of law, equal opportunity and freedom of religion.  

Have permission

The child must have the written consent of every person who is legally responsible for deciding where they live. If there are family law orders in place they must be consistent with the child moving to Australia.

Best interests of the child

A Visa may not be granted where the child is under 18 and the Department of Immigration is of the view that it is not in their best interests to be granted the visa.

Child Visa conditions

A child who is granted this Visa must not marry or enter a de facto relationship prior to entering Australia. They must not arrive in Australia before the person who is sponsoring them arrives.

How to apply

Before lodging an application for this visa, you should check that the child’s passport is valid and gather all the documents required in support of the application. There is a $2,665 fee associated with the visa and there may be additional costs associated with meeting the health and character tests.

Once a Visa has been granted, the visa holder or their family must advise the Department of Immigration if the child changes their name, if there are any changes to their passport or if the child has a baby.

If you require legal advice or representation in relation to a child visa or in any other legal matter, please contact Armstrong Legal. 

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