What is an Assurance of Support?
A variety of visa kinds may demand assurances of assistance. Simply put, an assurance of support is a commitment to provide financial assistance to a migrating family if necessary in order to keep the cost to the Australian taxpayer to a minimum. The assurer pledges to refund the visa applicant’s or family members’ social security payments if they migrate to Australia. These payments consist of the following:
- Added Advantage
- Allowance for Newcomers
- Allowance for Widows
- Allowance for Mature Age
- Payment for Parenting (Partnered)
- Allowance for your partner
- Allowance for Young People
- Payment for Austudy
- Payment in Case of Emergency
Who can provide a guarantee of support?
In most cases, the Assurance of Support is provided by a family member living in Australia; however, the assurer does not have to be a relative to be recognized as an assurer if they can produce sufficient taxable income in Australia to meet the requirements.
Corporations and unincorporated bodies can also provide assurances of support. It is also possible to file a joint guarantee of support on behalf of up to three people; in this situation, each person’s income can be considered toward the required minimum.
Limitations on Support Assurances
At any given moment, an individual can only function as an assurer for two adults. There is no limit to how many individuals a firm can guarantee at any given time.
Types of Support Assurance
There are two forms of support assurance:
- Mandatory or Bonded Support Assurance
- Assurance of Support: Discretionary or Unbounded
Sponsored skilled migration visas, parents, remaining relatives, and aged dependant relatives all require a Mandatory Assurance of Support. In all situations, the Assurance of Support is required for the issue of these types of visas.
A bond is required for Mandatory Assurances of Support. For most types of visas, the bond is held for two years (or 10 years for contributory parent visas). The visa applicant’s and migrating family’s Centrelink payments are deducted first from this bond, and any amount over the bond is recovered from the assurer.
The Department of Immigration can request a Discretionary Assurance of Support for a variety of visas, but it is most commonly requested when sponsorship is required for the visa to be granted – for example, child visas. When the sponsor’s income is somewhat low, a Discretionary Assurance of Support is frequently asked.
The Discretionary Assurance of Support does not require a bond, but it does have a similar income criterion (except if the assurer is single with no child dependents).
For provisional partner visas, no Assurance of Support is required as of January 1, 2012.
To be an Assurer, you must have a certain amount of money.
Assurers must have a certain amount of taxable income. Only Notices of Assessment from the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) can prove the income. When the assurer files their tax return, the ATO issues Notices of Assessment, which show the taxable income.
The taxable income for the previous two financial years must be disclosed (or the 2 prior to that, if the latest Notice of Assessment is not yet available). By producing a letter from their employment or payslips, the assurer must also demonstrate that their income is still at the needed minimum.
It’s important to remember that assets aren’t always taken into account when determining an insurer’s financial capabilities. The only time these can be considered is when the Assurance of Support is discretionary and the income is less than 10% of the statutory amount.
From April 1, 2019, the value of AoS securities will increase by over 50%.
|Visa||PRIOR to 1 April 2019||ON or AFTER 1 April 2019|
|Contributory Parent and Contributory Aged Parent visa||Primary Applicant = $10,000||Primary Applicant = $15,000|
|Secondary Applicant = $4,000||Secondary Applicant = $6,000|
|For all other parent and relative visas||Primary Applicant = $5,000||Primary Applicant = $7,500|
|Secondary Applicant = $2,000||Secondary Applicant = $3,000|
Sources: Legislative Instrument on AoS,