Information on humanitarian family reunion visas

Changes to the Special Humanitarian Programme

On 28 September 2012 significant changes were made to the Migration Regulations. These changes affect Irregular Maritime Arrivals and their ability to propose family members under the Special Humanitarian Programme.

  1. Irregular Maritime Arrivals (IMAs) arriving after 13 August 2012 cannot propose family under the Special Humanitarian Programme unless invited to do so (this affects both adult and child proposers alike).
  2. Irregular Maritime Arrivals (IMAs) who arrived prior to 13 August 2012 can still propose family under the Special Humanitarian Programme but they will be assessed against additional criteria if the proposer was aged 18 or over at the time they were granted their visa.

Applications will no longer be approved solely on the basis of the applicant’s relationship to the proposer.

The following criteria will now be assessed for these applications:

  • the degree of persecution the applicants are facing in their home country;
  • availability of alternative resettlement options;
  • Australia’s capacity to provide settlement; and
  • the extent of the applicant’s connection to Australia.

As of 22 March 2014, the additional criteria above also applies to applications lodged by Irregular Maritime Arrivals (IMAs) who arrived prior to 13 August 2012 and who were aged under 18 at the time they were granted their visas. These applications will also no longer be approved solely on the basis of the applicant's relationship to the proposer.

Information on humanitarian family reunion visas  :  Last Revised: Wed Jun 4th 2014
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