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Defacto Partner Visa

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Australian Partner Visa - Am I Eligible?

A new life and a new chapter together! Successful applications for partner visas in Australia permit the holder to live in Australia on a temporary or bridging visa. At the final decision stage you may entitled to permanent residency and enjoy the rights associated with this.

Prior to lodgement of your Partner Visa application it is necessary to show evidence of your shared life together. Evidence such as, your financial commitment to one another, shared living arrangements and social recognition of your relationship are essential. We can advise and assist how to put together the evidence to demonstrate your commitment to each other. For each case we generate a custom checklist of the requirements for you to follow. We also suggest edits to your submissions to help meet the legislative criteria.  

If you are already the holder of a visitor visa, student visa, skilled visa or working holiday visa the transition to partner visa may be complicated. Your existing substantive visa will take precedence over the temporary partner bridging visa (usually Bridging visa 'A'). Bridging visas may not permit you to work in Australia, If you need to work we can assist in obtaining work rights on the associated bridging visa. 

Partner Visa 820/801

12 Month Defacto

The 12-month cohabitation requirement for partner visas may be waived if the couple has the opportunity to registers their relationship in the state or territory they reside in. Relationship registration is not available in all Australian states/territories. Do bear in mind however if you register your relationship this may limit your options further down the line. 

In some instances you may apply for 801 permanent visa without the obligatory waiting period. This exemption mainly applies to applicants with children or if the couple have been together in a long term relationship.

For partner visas it is wise to plan in advance to ensure both the sponsor and applicant are eligible to make a successful visa application. As Registered Migration Agents we are aware of the process, criteria and good time management required to submit applications with the correct amount of evidence & detail. 

Below we have provided detailed information in our Frequently Asked Questions section which we hope you find helpful. Don't be shy, if you cannot find the answer you want get in touch we are a helpful bunch here!!


If you need help, we are qualified to manage your partner visa application. 

Below is a selection of our most frequently asked questions about Partner Visas In Australia. The topics are general in nature and should not be regarded as specific to your circumstances. Always speak with a Professional & Registered Migration Agent
Please contact Visa Crew for up to ate advice MORE

Q Who May Apply For Partner Visa?

You may be eligible to apply for a Partner visa 820/801 if you can satisfy the requirements which includes the following:

  • Applicant must be over 18 years of age

  • You both have been together for 12 months or more to satisfy DeFacto criteria

  • Married Couple - Marriage must be recognised under Australian Law

  • Relationship should be genuine and continuing 

  • Mutual commitment to a shared life - to the exclusion of all others

  • Shared life including financial & social commitments

  • Health and character requirements

  • You meet ALL regulations & criteria for the visa application

Q What Is The Difference Between Onshore or Offshore Partner Visas?

Main difference between these visa types is where the applicant should be located when the papers are lodged with the department of immigration.

  • Onshore Partner Visa: Applicant must be in Australia - Subclass 820/801

  • Offshore Partner Visa: Applicant must be outside Australia - Subclass 309/100


For More Information About Off Shore Partner Visas - Click HERE

Q Is My Partner Eligible To Sponsor Me?

The visa sponsor must be over 18 years of age. To be eligible the sponsor should meet one of the following criteria. 

Must be:

  • An Australian Citizen

  • An Australian Permanent Resident

  • An eligible New Zealand Citizen

There are other limitations on sponsors for Partner Visa. Please call us for detailed information.

2023: Additional Requirements for Sponsors Are Being Considered For Implementation. Be Mindful Of This New Development.

Q How Many Times Can I Sponsor A Partner To Australia?

The short answer is two; eligible sponsors may only sponsor two partners for a partner/marriage visa to Australia. There are exceptions to this life-long ban; you should provide evidence of compassionate and compelling circumstances to obtain a waiver. In these circumstances it is possible to sponsor additional visa applicants.

Q How Long Is The Visa Valid For?

Onshore 820/801 Partner visas are permanent visas - the applicant (if successful) will be granted full residency in Australia.

Q Can I Stay In Australia While Waiting For A Partner Visa?

You may be eligible for tourist visa to visit your partner while you are waiting for a decision on your partner visa. We have successfully obtained tourist visas for defacto partners. 

Q We Are In DeFacto Relationship But Mostly Live Apart?

It is not necessary for grant of visa that you must have lived together the whole time. It is important howevere you set out why you have been living apart and this would not be the intention, long term.

Good & accurate evidence is required with your application to ensure the Department understands your circumstances. 

Q We Have Questions About Prospective Marriage Visa?

Subclass 300 Prospective Marriage Visa is applicable to offshore applicants. Please go to our dedicated Prospective Marriage Visa page for more details: Click HERE

Q We Plan To Register Our Relationship?

Yes! This can be a smart option to circumvent the DeFacto requirement of Partner Visa application. Be aware however, this step may limit your options going forward. Call us for advice prior to registering your relationship.


Q Will I Be Required To Complete A Health Assessment?

Yes the primary applicant and secondary applicant will need to complete  a full health assessment. If you attended for an X-ray previously, we may be able to reuse this.

Q May I Include My Children?

Members of the family unit may be included - these are know as secondary applicants.

Q We Have a Joint Bank Account But Never Use It?

The couple must demonstrate financial transparency for the duration of their relationship. A joint bank account is the easiest and most practical way to evidence the financial aspects of your relationship. 

Q What Is New About Partner Visas?

2023 - Pending Legislation May Impact Some Partner Visa Applications. English requirements for the applicant and additional sponsor requirements are expected to be implemented.

Q How Long Is A Partner Visa?

The Partner Visa 820 is a temporary visa, this lasts until a decision is made on your permanent visa 801. The Partner Visa 801 is a Permanent Residency visa. Next step is Australian Citizenship!

I Hold A Bridging Visa & Need To Travel Abroad?

A bridging visa 'A' (associated with you partner visa application) does not permit travel into Australia. Obtain a seperate bridging before you depart Australia.

Q I Currently Hold A Student Visa, Am I Eligible To Apply For An Onshore Partner Visa?

Student visa holders are generally eligible to make further visa applications while they are in Australia. 

Check conditions on your Student Visa grant notice to ensure eligibility.

Q My Current Visa Has An 8503 Condition Attached, Can I Apply For Partner Visa?

An 8503 condition on your visa does not allow you to make a further visa application while you are in Australia. There are however exceptions to this; the regulations allow certain applicants to apply for a waiver. 

Q I Currently Hold A Visitor Visa, Am I Eligible To Apply For An Onshore Partner Visa?

Depending on any conditions imposed on your Visitor/Tourist Visa you may be eligible to apply for a partner visa while you are in Australia.


Q I Have Debts To The Australian Government?

When you have outstanding debts to the Government, your visa application will not be processed. Make arrangements to pay the debt before you submit your partner visa application.

Q My Previous Visa Was Cancelled, Am I Ok To Make A Partner Visa Application?

If your previous visa was cancelled or if you had a visa application refused you are subject to 'Section 48 Bar" (s48). This prevents you making further visa applications while you are in Australia.

There are however exceptions to the regulations which may allow you lodge a sucessful Partner Visa application.

Q My Partner Has HIV, Will This Be An Issue?

Medical conditions such as HIV may lead to a visa refusal. For Partner visas you may apply for a health waiver on financial and compelling/compassionate grounds. There are many other factors that the dept will consider as part of the waiver application. MORE

Q How Many 888 Declarations Do I Need?

You are required to provide 888 declarations with your application. We usually request four or more declarations from you. Do not prepare these unless requested; time limits apply.

Q Our Previous Partner Visa Application Was Refused?

It is wise to consult a Registered Migration Agent to advise on your individual circumstances. You may be s48 barred from making further visa applications while you are in Australia. ​​A decision to refuse your application may be appealed to the AAT. Be mindful of strict time limits that apply. Call Us for more detail.

Q I Do Not Have A Current Visa, Can I Apply?

The following Schedule 3 criteria may apply to you: 3001, 3002, 3003 or 3004. Partner visa applicants who do not meet schedule 3 criteria may be eligible to apply for a waiver on compelling & compassionate grounds. 

Q We Have More Questions About Partner Visas?

Call us anytime! Each day people turn to us for expert advice. No matter how complicated your case may seem we offer real solutions, customised to your circumstances!

Q How Can I Book An Appointment?

You may use our online booking service; choose a date and time that's suits your schedule. For convenience you may also pay your consultation fee at the time of booking

Q Is Visa Crew Licensed?

Yes, we are licensed with MARA to provide immigration advice. For peace of mind please ensure that you only engage with Licensed Operators MORE

You may also review  testimonials from our many clients form all corners of the glo. View Facebook and Google reviews HERE

Partner Visa Australia faq

Q How Long Does Partner Visa Take?

Partner visa applications processing times tend to vary, at present the wait time has increased probably due to staff shortages at DHA processing centres.

Quality of the evidence, submission documents and correct, logical filing will influence how quick the department finalises you visa application. Unfinished and incomplete documents add to the frustration of the case officer; these applications usually take longer to process or may be rejected.

Our experience however would indicate much faster processing times are the norm. We submit 'decision ready' applications which is the preference of the case officers. 'Decision Ready' or 'Front Loaded' applications should be your goal for a quick decision.

Q We Are A Same Sex Couple, May We Apply?

There is no discrimination under the Australian visa program for same sex couples. All visas including onshore 820/801 Partner Visas are available to gay couples. As with any couple, defacto criteria should be satisfied in order to submit a successful visa application.


Australian Federal Law now recognises gay marriage & civil unions.  If you are already married or in civil union the 12 months defacto requirement may be waived.

Q Can I Apply For 820/801 Visa At The Same Time?

Yes! The regulations allow for a combined partner visa application for subclass 820 / 801. This will save you time, money and much stress.

Q Does The 820/801 Visa Allow Me to Work?

When a Partner visa is granted there are many benefits to the holder:

  • Reside in Australia with your partner

  • Apply for Australian Citizenship

  • Unrestricted work rights in Australia

  • Study in Australia

  • Travel abroad  - 5 year travel rights

  • Include dependent children or family members 

  • Enrol in Medicare 

  • Sponsor other family members to work in Australia

  • Sponsor your Parents to reside in Australia

Q My 5 Year Travel Rights Have Expired?

When your subclass 801 visa is granted you automatically become a Permanent Resident of Australia.  PR includes 5 year travel rights into Australia from date of visa grant. If your 5 year travel period has expired or is about to expire you may be eligible for following options:

  • Apply for Australian Citizenship

  • Resident Return Visa (RRV)

If your 5 year travel facility is close to expiry please ensure you make necessary arrangements before you depart Australia. You may have difficulty with immigration if your travel rights have expired.

Q How Much Is A Partner Visa In Australia?

DHA Visa Application Charges (VAC) for 820/801 onshore partner visa are as follows:


  • $8850.00 | Primary Applicant

VAC - Visa Application Charges are generally increased at the start of each financial year. 

Q When Am I Eligible For 801 Permanent Visa?

Exactly 24 months after you submitted your initial partner visa application then you may update the Department and make final submission for 801 stage. When finalised you will be considered for Permanent Residency. 

Q We Want To Submit Our Own Partner Visa Application, Can We Do This?

Yes you may submit your own visa application with your partner/sponsor if you feel competent. There is ample resources online to assist you; a good place to start is the Government Home Affairs website:

Q Visa Crew - What Are Your Professional Fees?

our fees may vary depending upon your circumstances and complexity of the case. We tel you upfront what you can expect to pay - our process is transparent.

Request HERE

Keep an eye out for changes to migration legislation and regulations, it is important your Partner Visa Application is up to date with any legislative amendments.

Visa Crew also offers various service levels to assist with your partner visa application. Should just want a Migration Consultant to overlook some of your documents or wish for us to manage the complete application; then we can help! We have the experience and we are qualified.

Call Visa Crew to find out more: Click HERE

Partner Visa Australia


Every day, people turn to Visa Crew for expert advice to help them through the (sometimes) complicated visa application process. We have a successful history of expertise in Australian Visa program; we are proud of our track-record and success.

All immigration advice you receive from Visa Crew is provided by Registered Migration Agents. When you appoint us to manage your visa application, like other people, you have chosen to be represented by a team of experts who can deliver our promise!

In addition to our in-house expertise we also collaborate with a large network of qualified Professionals and Immigration Industry Bodies. This grants us access to the perfect knowledge base which we may utilise for your case. No matter how complex your circumstances may seem, call us for assistance. 

The team at Visa Crew are trained and based in Australia for your peace of mind. You are most welcome to visit our office anytime!

WHAT YOU GET | Peace Of Mind

Assessment of Your Case By A Registered Immigration Agent

Consult Current Migration Law & Regulations For Your Case

Lodgement of Visa Application With Submission Documentation

Unlimited, Professional Migration Advice On Your Case

Access To Online Case/File Management Portal

Unlimited Face To Face Consultations

Fixed Fee - No Hidden Extras

Regular Updates On Your Case

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