As usual this time of year ImmiAccount along with many other online services provided by the Department of Home Affairs will shut down from 5 pm on 30 June 2019 and will be back up at 6 am on 1 July 2019 according to their website announcement. Applicants wanting to avoid the 5.4 per cent fee increase on most visas, as announced in the federal budget, will want to take note.
System maintenance of any online platform is a necessity and adjusting the visa application charges is just one reason for this. Another major reason is to include the forms for the Subclass 870 – Sponsored Parent (Temporary) visa. While sponsor applications for this visa commenced on 17 April 2019, no corresponding visa applications could be made as there was no lawful way of doing so.
That has all changed with a recent legislative instrument, which provides for how valid 870 visa applications can be made. Only Internet applications on the approved form (Form 1502) will be accepted from 1 July 2019.
One major difference is the time allowed to lodge this application. Onshore applicants will only have 60 days to lodge this application from the day they are permitted by the Minister, while offshore applicants will have 6 months from the date the relevant parent sponsor is approved or varied if that variation affects the visa applicant.
There is an allocation for 15,000 of these visas for the next program year and it will be interesting to see in due course how many take up this visa.