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Orphan Relative visa (subclass 837)

About this visa

This visa allows the child to live permanently in Australia with their sponsoring relative.​

An Orphan Relative (subclass 837) visa is for a child whose parents are dead, permanently incapacitated or of unknown whereabouts. It allows a child in this situation to live permanently with their sponsoring relative in Australia.

The sponsoring relative usually applies on behalf of the child.​

What you can do

It allows the child to:

  • Stay in Australia indefinitely
  • Work and study in Australia
  • Enrol in Medicare, Australia’s scheme for health-related care and expenses
  • Apply for Australian citizenship (if they are eligible)
  • Sponsor eligible relatives for permanent residence
  • Travel to and from Australia for five years from the date the visa is granted – after that time they will need another visa to enter Australia.


Who could get this visa

To apply for this visa, a child must:

  • Be in Australia
  • Be younger than 18 years old
  • Be sponsored by their relative who is:
    • The brother, sister, grandparent, aunt, uncle or step-equivalent of the child
    • Older than 18 years of age
    • An Australian citizen, an Australian permanent resident or an eligible New Zealand citizen
  • Not be married or in a de-facto relationship
  • Be in situation where their parents are unable to care for them
  • Meet health and character requirements.​

The child’s parents

A child is eligible for this visa if their parents are not able to care for them. This could be because the parents:

  • Are dead
  • Are incapable of caring for the child
  • Cannot be found

A child cannot apply for this visa if their parents could care for them but do not want to.

If the parents cannot be found, the application will need to show how long they have been missing and what has been done to try to find them.​

Best interests of the child

This visa will not usually be granted if it is against the best interests of a child younger than 18 years of age.

Assurance of support

Immigration might ask for an assurance of support for the child so that welfare costs for some migrants are not borne by the Australian community.

Applicants may also needed to meet below requirements

Character requirements, Health requirements, Health insurance requirements, Must not have Debts to the Australian Government, biometric and other requirements if needed.

Your obligations

You and your family must comply with all visa conditions and Australian laws.

Source – Australian Immigration Website.

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