Student Guardian visa (subclass 580)

Features

This visa allows you to stay in Australia:

  • as the guardian of an international student younger than 18 years of age studying in Australia on a student visa
  • in exceptional circumstances, as the guardian of an international student over 18 years of age studying in Australia on a student visa.​

Requirements

You might be able to get this visa if you:

  • are a parent or person who has legal custody of the student, or a relative who is nominated by a parent or custodian of the student
  • are at least 21 years of age
  • have no family members younger than 6 years of age, except under certain circumstances
  • are able to provide accommodation, general welfare and other support to the student.

About this visa

The Student Guardian visa (subclass 580) is a temporary visa for a person who needs to come to Australia to provide care and support for:

  • a student visa holder who is younger than 18 years of age
  • a student visa holder who is older than 18 years of age and who needs such care and support due to exceptional circumstances.

You can apply in or outside Australia by post or in person. You cannot apply online.

There can only be one Student Guardian visa holder at any given time in respect of a particular student visa holder (except in certain limited circumstances).

If you apply in Australia, you must be in Australia to be granted the visa.

If you apply outside Australia, you must be outside Australia to be granted the visa.

What this visa lets you do

    1. Stay in Australia for the same length of time as the student visa holder in respect of whom you hold this visa (the 'nominating student'), or until the nominating student turns 18 years of age.
    2. If you have lodged your application on or after 24 March 2012, you can study in Australia for up to 20 hours per week in an English Language Intensive Course for Overseas Students (ELICOS).
    3. Study in a course other than ELICOS in Australia for up to three months.

Before you apply

If you are the student visa holder's parent or have legal custody, you can apply for this visa to come to Australia with the student. If you are not the student visa holder's parent or legal custodian, that person must nominate you as the student's guardian.

Your passport

If you plan to get a new passport, you should do so before applying for your visa. Your visa is linked to the passport number you use in your application and you must use the same passport to travel to Australia.

No further stay condition

You cannot apply for this visa if you already hold another visa that has a ‘No further stay’ condition.

Contact us if you are not sure whether your current visa conditions prevent you from applying for a further visa while you are in Australia.

Cost

The visa application charges are listed in Fees and charges.

Other costs

You might have to pay other costs, such as the costs of health assessments, police certificates, or any other certificates or tests. You are responsible for making the necessary arrangements.

Visa applicants

This information tells you what you need to do to apply for a Student Guardian visa (subclass 580).

Who could get this visa

You might be able to get this visa if you:

  • are a parent or person who has legal custody of the nominating student visa holder, or a relative of the student visa holder who is nominated by the student's parent or guardian
  • are at least 21 years of age
  • are able to provide accommodation, general welfare and other support to the student visa holder
  • are a genuine temporary entrant
  • meet financial requirements
  • meet health, character and other requirements.

Genuine temporary entrant

You must show that you are a genuine temporary entrant to be granted a visa.

To assess whether you are a genuine temporary entrant, we consider:

  • your personal circumstances
  • your immigration history
  • any other matter that is relevant to your intention to stay in Australia temporarily.

We decide whether you are a genuine temporary entrant based on the information you provide. You might be asked to supply more information.

Health requirements

You must meet certain health requirements. The health examinations you need will depend on your personal circumstances, including your period of stay, country of citizenship, time spent in another country during the last five years and your intended activities in Australia. The results of your health examinations are generally valid for 12 months.

This applies to you and any dependent family members included in your application.

You are able to organise your health examinations upfront before lodging your visa application. You should not undertake your health examination more than six months before your course starts.

Health insurance

You are responsible for all your health costs while you are in Australia. You will not be covered by Australia's national health scheme (Medicare) unless your country has a reciprocal health care agreement with Australia.

You must have adequate health insurance unless you are covered by Medicare. You should ensure that your insurance will provide at least the level of coverage required for the purpose of your stay. Your health insurer could be in either Australia or your home country.

Attachment A in thehealth insurance standard template letter (138 kB RTF) is a guide to the level of health insurance we will accept as adequate.

Your insurance must cover you and any family members who come with you to Australia. You do not need to include the student visa holder who has nominated you for a Student Guardian visa because they must have their own overseas student health cover to be able to apply for their student visa.

You can find more information about health insurance at Overseas Visitors' Health Cover.

Character requirements

You must meet certain character requirements. You must be prepared to provide a police certificate from each country you have lived in for 12 months or more during the past 10 years after you turned 16 years of age. Do not arrange for police certificates until we ask you to.

Debts to the Australian Government

You must have no outstanding debts to the Australian Government or have arranged to repay any outstanding debts to the Australian Government before this visa can be granted.

Provide biometrics

You might be asked to provide biometrics (a scientific form of identification) as part of the application. Countries and visa subclasses included in the biometrics program has more information.

Including family in your application

In most cases, your family members cannot come with you to Australia. The only exception is that you can bring your child younger than six years of age if either:

  • the child holds a passport that is subject to assessment level 1 or 2 for the Schools Sector visa (subclass 571) (see Student visa program – assessment levels) and there are compassionate and compelling reasons for us to grant a visa
  • granting the visa would significantly benefit the relationship between the Australian Government and the government of another country.

The child must meet the same health and health insurance requirements as you (they can be included in your health insurance).

Dependent children of school age (six years or older) must apply for their own Schools Sector visa if they will be attending school in Australia.

How to apply

This information explains what you need to do to apply for a Student Guardian visa (subclass 580).

You can apply at the same time as the nominating student or after the student has been granted a student visa. If you intend to apply for your visa at the same time that the student applies for theirs, you should apply at the same immigration office.

You can apply for this visa while you are in Australia. However, if you are applying for your first Student Guardian visa and your nominating student is subject to assessment level 2 or 3, you must demonstrate exceptional reasons for the visa to be granted while you are in Australia.

Lodge your application by post or in person

  • Complete Form 157G Application for a student guardian visa (251 kB PDF). Attach all necessary documents to the form.
  • If you are not the student’s parent or legal custodian, you need to ask the parent or legal guardian to complete Form 157N Nomination of a student guardian (129 kB PDF).

You can pay the application fee by credit card, debit card (if paying in person), bank cheque or money order made payable to the Department of Immigration and Border Protection.

In Australia:
Post or deliver your application to your nearest Australian office.

Outside Australia:
If you are applying from outside Australia, lodge your application at one of the immigration offices outside Australia, which will tell you how you can pay. There is also information at Method of Payment Accepted at Australian Missions.

Citizens of the People’s Republic of China, Pakistan or Afghanistan:
You must apply to the Adelaide office in South Australia - attention Student Visa Centre - if you apply outside Australia and are:

  • a citizen of the People’s Republic of China who normally lives in mainland China or New Zealand
  • a citizen of Pakistan who is not a Foreign Affairs or Defence student and who normally lives in Pakistan or New Zealand
  • a citizen of Afghanistan who is not a Foreign Affairs or Defence student and who normally lives in Afghanistan, Pakistan or New Zealand.

Applicants from South Korea:

  • If you want to apply for both a Schools Sector visa and a Student Guardian visa, you must apply for both at the same time to the Australian Embassy in Seoul.
  • If you apply online and lodge your Student Guardian visa application at the embassy, you must include the transaction reference number (TRN) you received when you first applied online.

More information

There is more information to help you prepare your application, such as certifying and translating documents into English, communicating with us, using a migration agent, authorising another person to receive information from us, and receiving assistance with your application.

After you have applied

After you have lodged your application and documents, we will let you know that we have received your information.

Wait for a decision

We have visa processing times for each visa.

Your application could take longer if you need character or health checks (including x-rays), if you need to provide more information, or if your application is incomplete.

Outside Australia:
If you apply for this visa from outside Australia, do not make arrangements to travel to Australia until you are advised in writing that you have been granted a visa. Wait for a decision from us before you leave your job, sell your home or book your travel.

In Australia:
If you apply for this visa in Australia, you could be eligible for a Bridging visa that allows you to stay in the country lawfully while your application is processed. If you are given a Bridging visa A, you can apply for a Bridging visa B (BVB) to travel outside Australia while you wait for a decision.

Provide more information

You can provide more information to us, at any time until a decision is made on the application. If you want to correct information you provided, use:

We could also ask you for more information. You will have to respond by a set date. After that date, we can make a decision about your application using the information that we have.

If another person gives us information that could result in you being refused a visa, we will usually give you the opportunity to comment on the information.

You might also be interviewed. If you are asked to attend an interview in person, bring your passport or other identification and any requested documents to the interview.

Report changes in your circumstances

You must tell us if your circumstances change. This includes a new residential address, a new passport, or a pregnancy, birth, divorce, separation, marriage, de facto relationship or death in your family.

You can use the following forms:

If you do not provide us with the details of any new passport issued to you, you could experience significant delays at the airport and may be denied permission to board your plane.

Withdrawing your application

You can withdraw the application at any time before we make a decision about it. To do this, send us a letter or email to ask for the withdrawal. Your request must include your full name and date of birth. You should also include the number we gave you when you applied, if you know it – this could be a file reference number, client ID, or a Transaction Reference Number.

If you are 18 years of age or older, you must sign the letter of withdrawal or send a separate email or letter.

Visa decision

If this visa is granted, we will send a notification of grant letter to you at your nominated postal or email address. Print this letter and bring it when you travel to and from Australia. The letter contains:

  • when you can use the visa
  • the visa grant number
  • any conditions attached to the visa.

Outside Australia:
If this visa is not granted, we will send you a letter or email stating why the visa was not granted.

In Australia:
If this visa is not granted, we will send you a letter or email stating:

  • why the visa was not granted
  • your review rights (if any)
  • the time limit for applying for a review of the decision (if applicable).

Visa holders

This information is for people who have already been granted a Student Guardian visa (subclass 580). It explains your rights and obligations.

How long your visa lasts

Your Student Guardian visa is valid for the same length of time as the student visa of the student for whom you are guardian or until the student turns 18 years of age.

What this visa lets you do

    1. Stay in Australia for the same length of time as the nominating student, or until the student turns 18 years of age
    2. If you lodged your application on or after 24 March 2012,  you can study in Australia for up to 20 hours per week in an English Language Intensive Course for Overseas Students (ELICOS).
    3. Study in a course other than ELICOS in Australia for up to three months.
    You can enter and leave Australia during the term of the visa, but you cannot leave Australia without the nominating student unless you provide us with evidence that:
      • there are compelling compassionate circumstances
      • you have made alternative arrangements for the student’s accommodation, general welfare and support until you return and those arrangements have been approved by the student’s education provider.

      Your obligations

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

      You must:

      • maintain health insurance for yourself and any dependent children living with you in Australia
      • live with the student and provide them with appropriate accommodation, general welfare and other support.

      You must comply with the visa’s ‘no further stay’ condition. This means that you cannot apply for any other visa while you are in Australia, unless it is a further Student Guardian visa or a Protection visa.

      You must not work while in Australia.

      Report changes in your circumstances

      Tell us if your circumstances change. This includes a new residential address, a new passport, or a pregnancy, birth or death in your family.

      You can use the following forms:

Financial requirements

This page explains the financial requirements you must meet to be granted a Student Guardian visa (subclass 580).

You must have enough money from acceptable sources to pay for your travel and expenses. The table below is a guide to the amount you will need.

Minimum required funding for your stay in Australia

Costs
Amount required in Australian dollars (AUD)
You (the Student Guardian visa applicant)
18 610 per year
First child (younger than six years of age), if applicable
3720 per year
Each extra child (younger than six years of age), if applicable
2790 per year
Travel costs (per person)
Return air fare to Australia

The assessment level that we apply to your nominating student's visa application determines the evidence that you must have to show that you can meet our financial requirements.

Non-cash assets, such as property and shares, are not acceptable sources of income. However, non-cash assets could be liquidated or used as collateral on a loan.

Streamlined processing and assessment levels 1 and 2

You must:

  • show that you have enough to pay for travel and for tuition and living expenses for the first 12 months of your stay in Australia
  • declare in your application that you can meet these financial requirements for the rest of your stay in Australia.

Assessment level 3

You must:

  • show that you have enough to pay for travel and for tuition and living expenses for the first 12 months of your stay in Australia
  • declare in your application that you can meet these financial requirements for the rest of your stay in Australia.

Funds to support you and your family members must come from an acceptable source, such as:

  • money deposits held in a bank account by you or an eligible family member for at least three months immediately before you apply
  • a loan from an approved financial institution
  • a loan from the government of your country
  • in some circumstances, financial support from the nominating student’s education provider
  • financial support from the Australian Government, the government of an Australian state or territory, or the government of a foreign country.

Eligible family members include:

  • the applicant
  • the applicant’s partner
  • the applicant’s parents
  • the applicant’s grandparents
  • the applicant’s brothers and sisters
  • an uncle or aunt of the applicant who is:
    • an Australian citizen, an Australian permanent resident or an eligible New Zealand citizen
    • a usual resident in Australia.

Estimate the cost of your visa

Will the primary applicant be in Australia when the application is lodged?
* Price will be displayed in Australian dollars unless changed.
The Visa Pricing Estimator requires you to answer the questions as accurately as possible to provide you with an estimate for lodging a visa application. The estimator does not include the second instalment of the visa application charge which is payable for some visas. Please note this is an estimate for a visa application, if you have already lodged your application and you want to change/add applicants please refer to the Visa Pricing Table. The Department of Immigration and Border Protection Visa Pricing Estimator will give you an estimate of the charges you may need to pay to lodge a visa application. This is paid after you have made your application but before the visa can be granted. Read the department's full disclaimer. The Commonwealth of Australia does not guarantee the accuracy, currency or completeness of any material in the Visa Pricing Estimator.

Last reviewed

Monday 11 August 2014