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Here at Down Under Visa we prepare and lodge a lot of tourist visa applications. Most of the time these are applications for single solitary Filipina ladies who are in romantic relationships with Australian men. Tourist visa applications for kids are less common, but we still invariably lodge them every month.

We’re not talking about tourist visas for solitary kids, of course. This is kids of Filipina ladies who bring them along so they can be with their future stepfathers, assuming all goes ahead toward a partner visa application later.

australian visa applications for kids may or may not be a good idea in Australian Filipina relationships

Wonderful kid, no doubt. But can make romance for mum and dad challenging.

Tourist visas for Filipino children – practical considerations

To bring the kids, or not to bring the kids?

Again, probably most don’t bring the kids. And whilst I’m a firm PERSONAL believer in kids being included in partner visa applications and not left behind, I have a bit of a different view generally when it comes to tourist visa applications. My view is that unless the relationship is mature enough and you’ve spent enough time with mum AND kids that you have a comfortable relationship anyway, you should consider leaving the kids at home for at least the first visit.

Why?

Because a first visit to Australia for a girl from the Philippines IS a big deal, and the purpose of it is to see if you’re comfortable enough together to take the relationship further and to make it permanent. For many women this will be their first trip outside the Philippines, and maybe the first time they’ve been away from their families and the home town even. They’ll be spending 3 months in an Aussie brick-veneer house out in the Australian suburbs somewhere with an Aussie man that they probably have a still-young relationship with. There will be culture-shock issues……homesickness….and the usual relationship teething-problems. Kids…..unless they are candidates for sainthood…..tend to be a demanding lot!

So the issue is you have a Filipina lady there, with her child. Mum has culture/relationship-shock, and child has usual kid-needs. She can’t tend effectively to both her relationship and needy child at the same time. One or both will most likely miss out. Not so easy to have romantic evenings and time spent gazing at each other if there’s a three-year-old tugging at Mummy’s shirt and wanting a drink. Sure doesn’t add to the romance of the whole thing!

Again, if you have spent enough time together and have concentrated already on developing bonds of a new family, then maybe none of this is an issue at all. But if not the case, maybe better to leave Junior with granny this time!

The other issue is that the child may only attend school in Australia for three months maximum. And even if you get a stay longer than 3 months (by getting a 6 month visa grant, or by applying for a further stay inside Australia, or if you have a multiple-entry tourist visa), the child may only attend an Australian school for 3 months maximum. So they may miss out on schooling. The other thing is that this may cause a problem with the child’s schooling back in the Philippines. The Filipino education system is not known for its flexibility.

 

Can I bring the child to Australia in the first place?

OK, so you’ve decided that it’s a good idea to bring the whole family, and of course that’s fine with us. Will there be anything stopping you from getting a tourist visa for the child or children?

Firstly, note that kids go onto separate visa applications. We charge less for kids’ tourist visas than we do for adult visas, because even though they are separate applications they can see the connection between mum’s visa application and Junior’s application. So less work for us. But they are still processed separately, so we don’t do them for free.

Main issue is that you have legal permission to bring the child with you, ie. legal custody. If the mother is a single mother, ie. never married to the biological father of the child, then she has sole legal custody under Philippines law. If she’s widowed, obviously no permission needed. If she is or was married? The father of the child will normally have custodial rights, unless the court specifically took those rights away from him which doesn’t happen very often.

So if there is a custodial father of the child, his permission is needed. If not? Then proof is needed. We can explain all of this to you at the time you ask for us to help you.

And note that an application for a child may well take longer than mum’s visa application, as they need to be 100% certain that all is OK. The safety and protection of children is paramount, so be prepared to wait for them to do their checks and follow-ups.

Simon and Rose - More happy Down Under Visa clients
Filipina wife abandoned. Can she remarry now?

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