An Assurance of Support is a guarantee provided to the Australian government that migrants will not have to depend on any assistance from the government in the first two years while living in Australia. This assurance can be provided by one person, an organization or up to three persons in a joint assurance of support.
Assurers who are individuals are obliged to:
• pay a bond for every adult applicant aged 18 years and above:
o AUD 10,000 — for the main applicant
o AUD 4,000 — for each adult family member included in the application.
• reimburse any recoverable social security payments made to you in the first two years of living in Australia including any payment made by Centerlink or any support covered by the AoS
If the assurer is an organisation, the bond will be larger.
An AoS can last for up to ten years for Contributory Parent Visa and two years for most other visa where the AoS is required. The AoS is in effect on the date of visa grant if the applicant is inside Australia or the date of entry into Australia if the visa holder is outside Australia. Upon maturity of the AoS, the bond payment less any debts owed to the Australian government is refunded to the assurers. The lodgement of AoS is usually required after the visa application has been assessed by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection.
Types of Assurance of Support (AoS)
There are two types of AoS namely the mandatory AoS and the discretionary AoS.
Mandatory AoS must be paid before a visa can be granted and it cannot be waived in any circumstances. In such case, a financial bond must be lodged by the assurer. The following permanent visas applies:
• Parent (AUD5,000 main applicant, AUD2,000 secondary applicant)
• Aged Parent (AUD5,000 main applicant, AUD2,000 secondary applicant)
• Contributory Parent (AUD10,000 main applicant, AUD4,000 secondary applicant)
• Contributory Aged Parent (AUD10,000 main applicant, AUD4,000 secondary applicant)
• Aged Dependent Relative (AUD5,000 main applicant, AUD2,000 secondary applicant)
• Remaining Relative (AUD5,000 main applicant, AUD2,000 secondary applicant)
The bond payment is applicable for applicants aged 18 and above.
For AoS of AUD10,000 is applicable for each application if the assurer is an organization.
Discretionary AoS may be required if the applicant is perceived to be a risk of being a burden to the Australian community. Considerations taken into account would include the education, skills, employability, English language ability and age of the visa applicant and sponsor. In most cases, an AoS bond is not required for visas with a discretionary AoS.