Australian Visas For Married and De-facto Partners
There are two versions of this visa – one is temporary and the other is permanent. The temporary visa lasts for two years while a decision is made about your permanent visa. It allows you to:
- Work in Australia
- Study on any Course
- Enrol in Medicare
- Live in Australia
The permanent visa has no limits on how long you can stay in Australia. In addition to the benefits above it also lets you receive some social security payments and provides a pathway to Australian citizenship.
If you marry your partner at any point your visa entitlement for a Spouse Visa changes, it’s a good idea to get back in touch if your situation changes to see if you are eligible for a visa with further benefits. You do not need to submit two applications for a temporary and permanent Unmarried Partner Visa.
If you meet the legal criteria and still meet all of these requirements after your waiting period you apply for both in a single application. While this does not mean that you are automatically eligible for a permanent Partner Visa if you have the temporary one it does simplify the process for you.
In terms of processing times, this is dealt with by the Australian immigration authorities. We would expect to have your case processed within 12 to 18 months but as we are not responsible for the actual processing this is something that we cannot guarantee.
What is the Minimum Requirement to be a Partner?
You will need to have an exclusive relationship and be living together (or only be apart temporarily). Your evidence will also need to detail your relationship for at least 12 months before your application.
If you’ve been together less than 12 months you may still be eligible for this visa. The Australian government accepts a number of waivers, particularly if you have a child together. If you are in a same-sex relationship the Immigration Authorities will also understand if you were unable to cohabit due to the laws of your home country.
Like any other Australian visa you will need to fulfil the Australian health and character requirements to be accepted.
You will need a range of documents to support your application to prove your identity, show that you have good health and character and to prove your relationship. The identity documents include:
- copies of your passport
- certified copies of your birth certificate
- 4 recent passport-size photographs.
In addition to your details, you will also need to send information about your partner, including details of previous relationships (such as marriage certificates) and proof that these relationships have ended (such as divorce papers or a death certificate).
Your relationship documentation needs to show that:
- You have a mutual, exclusive relationship
- The relationship is genuine and continuing
- You have been living together
You will be asked to prove this through your knowledge of each other’s personal lives, explanations of the financial aspects of the relationship, details of living arrangements, descriptions of the social aspects and mutual friends (this can include statutory declarations by friends) and a discussion of the nature of the relationship which includes whether you see it as a long-term commitment.
Building a convincing case
This is key to this visa, many genuine relationships are turned away every year because they didn’t know how to present themselves properly. Our experts have helped many people over the years and can help you gain your Unmarried Partner Visa for Australia. Marriages entered into for the sole purpose of providing a visa to the overseas national is not acceptable and there are rigorous tests applied.
If you are not married but are life partners or intend on getting married once you reach Australia let us know and we will discuss the various partner visa options and criteria with you.
- be sponsored by an eligible person
- be legally married to your partner (usually your sponsor)and be able to prove that you and your partner have a mutual commitment to a shared life as husband and wife to the exclusion of all others
- show that you have a genuine and continuing relationship with your partner
- show that you and your partner are living together or, if not, that any separation is only temporary
- you will be required to meet health and character requirements which will include a clear medical and criminal record
The Australian Partner Visa falls in the temporary visa stream and will allow you to:
- Stay in Australia until a decision is made about your permanent Partner visa
- Work in Australia
- Study in Australia, but with no access to government funding
- Enrol in Medicare, Australia’s scheme for health-related care and expenses
- Dependent children can be included in your application, but not other dependent relatives
If you are later granted a permanent visa, you would be able to:
- Stay in Australia indefinitely
- Work and study in Australia
- Apply for Australian citizenship (if you are eligible)
- Sponsor eligible relatives for permanent residence
- Receive some social security payments
- Travel to and from Australia for five years from the date the visa is granted – after that time you will need another visa to enter Australia.
To apply for this visa you must be outside of Australia. The processing time can be up to 24 months in some cases, however, we aim to reduce this where possible.
Once the visa is approved you can live and work in Australia for up to nine months, during this time you will be expected to apply for a spouse visa.
All the sponsoring, character and health requirements for spouse visas apply for the prospective marriage visa.