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Our Ultimate & Complete Partner Visa Checklist is the most up-to-date, and easy to follow guide available today. We have generated our checklist to ensure you have the most relevant information required for this important step of your life. 


Partner visas are the first choice for an Australian citizen, Permanent Resident or an Eligible New Zealand Citizen to sponsor their spouse or Defacto partner. The end goal however, is to choose the correct visa for your circumstances.

The information below is applicable to onshore (820/801) or offshore (309/100) partner visa applications - the process and requirements for both are broadly similar. 

Partner Visa 820

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During the budget on the 6th October 2020 The Australian Federal Government announced much anticipated changes to partner visa applications. Two of the most significant changes to the partner visa is the new English requirement and pre-approval for visa sponsors.

Applicants and the applicants sponsor will be required to pass an English language requirement for grant of the second stage visa application. The aim of the test is to promote social cohesion and economic participation. 

The second major announcement is in regard to sponsorship approval. In summary the sponsor will need to be 'approved' prior to when the partner visa application is submitted. There is a similar process in place for parent visa applications; the department are streamlining how they approve sponsors for family visas.

The sponsorship framework will mandate character checks and the sharing of personal information as part of the new advance sponsorship approval process. These changes will complement existing family violence provisions within the Partner visa program. 


Legislation or full details of the new requirements are not yet released, but we do expect the new measures will be implemented as early as November 2021. These measures will impact 820/801 and 309/100 visa applications. 

Contact us for updates: Click HERE

What you Should Know - 2022

The following information may be suitable for your circumstances; we advise of course you should obtain professional assistance prior to making this 'big' decision. If you are considering a Prospective Marriage Visa or a Partner visa, then you may find the information on this page useful. 

Remember there is not 'a one size fits all' when it comes to a checklist for visa applications. There are criteria within the legislation that may not apply to your case or other criteria that may be detrimental if you do not address these.  Be aware, and consider all the criteria for your unique situation.

When Should I Apply For A Partner Visa? 

This is a question we are frequently asked; when is a good time, the right time to apply for our partner visa application?

The answer to this is quite simple; you should apply for your partner visa application when you are eligible! When couples apply too early in the process they may struggle to provide hard evidence to support their relationship. Make an application too late then the applicant may become unlawful. Consider the points below and checklist to help you ascertain your eligibility for a partner visa. Major criteria to note: are you married or in a defacto relationship? Do you meet the 12 month defacto requirement? Most of what you read here (or elsewhere) is really just the tip of the iceberg; to write about or explain each detail and requirement here is a big task. Be careful when you get your information in snippets from various sources; this could easily trip you up and spell disaster for an otherwise good application.

If you’re unsure about eligibility or have doubts in regard to your circumstances and the visa requirements then we are only a phone call away. Don't get a visa refusal, get help early in the process so that you can be properly prepared. Ask the experts, we are here to help you...

What Does 820/801 Visa Permit Me To Do?

Briefly this visa subclass is designed for those who are in Australia and who wish to transition from another visa which they hold i.e. student visa. The applicant will be entitled to a bridging visa which permits them to remain in Australia throughout the decision process. You may be in a defacto or marriage relationship, usually of 12 months duration to be eligible for this visa.

What Does 309/100 Visa Permit Me To Do?

If you are outside Australia and in a defacto or marriage relationship then this visa subclass may be suitable for you. The applicant will not be entitled to a bridging visa and therefore cannot entire Australia until the application is decided.

Should We Consider The Prospective Marriage Visa?

When the couple are not in a defacto or marriage relationship then you could consider this visa subclass. When you have not know your partner for a long period and you wish to marry, you could consider this option. The applicant will not be entitled to a bridging visa and therefore cannot entire Australia until the application is decided.

Who May Apply For Partner or Marriage Visas?

Married or de facto couples (both opposite sex and same sex) may apply for permanent residence in Australia through these visa pathways. In the case of the marriage visa you are not required to meet the 12 month defacto criteria. The visa applicant and any dependent family members who are included in the application (such as children) should also be sponsored by their partner/spouse.

Initially, partners who meet the legal criteria for the visa to be approved are granted a temporary 820 visa. Later, a permanent 801 visa can be granted following an eligibility period of 2 years or, if there is a long-standing relationship or children of the relationship, soon after grant of the temporary visa.

Use An IMMI A/C Account Online


To lodge you partner visa online firstly you should consider creating an IMMI A/C Account. Your visa application will be submitted electronically to the Department Of Home Affairs (DHA).

To commence the process you should:

  • Create an ImmiAccount

  • Complete the online form Form 47SP Application for migration to Australia by a partner.

  • When the main applicant has completed the 47SP online application, the sponsor should quote the relevant TRN to submit their own 40SP Sponsorship Form for a Partner to Migrate to Australia.

  • Sponsor to complete 40SP online form

  • Pay online appropriate Visa Application Charges. Currently $7850.00

  • Review your forms and submit, lodge your visa application

  • Follow guidelines on the IMMI Account to attach the relevant evidence/forms; importantly ensure you make a valid visa application.


Follow this link for information on how to create your IMMI account online: Click HERE

Visa Application Charges

Partner Visa Astralia Application Charges

Ensure you pay the relevant visa charges and surcharge in full and in advance of your current visa expiry. If you are onshore, allow adequate time for your payment to clear in order that your bridging visa will be issued. Visa application charges are expected to be revised in June 2021.

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Top Tip | 01

IT can be easy to overlook critical elements of your visa application, remember legislation is constantly changing and could disrupt your plans. Our top tip is to obtain professional advice early in the process, before you submit your visa application. Book a consulatation with a Registered Immigration Agent for 30 minutes or an hour. Have your queries ready in advance to utilise the time efficiently. This is money well spent, you will not regret it!

Top Tip | 02

To submit an onshore partner visa application (820/801) you must be in Australia. Likewise if you are outside Australia an offshore partner visa (309/100) may be appropriate for you

Top Tip | 03

Your relationship should be genuine and meet spouse or defacto criteria of the visa application. Otherwise you risk a refusal with no refund of the visa application charges.

Top Tip | 04

To avoid confusion you are making two visa application in one i.e. 820/801 0r 309/100. Later in the process (24 months) you will evidence the latter stages of your relationship which is the pathway to Permanent Residency. 

Top Tips Partner Visa Australia

Top Tip | 05

You are not required to have separate, private health insurance for partner visa applications. In fact, in some cases you will be eligible to apply for Medicare, the Australian healthcare system.  

Top Tip | 06

Although we have taken great care when generating this checklist and information, it is not 'everything you need to know'. This is general advice; for each client we offer a unique, customised and detailed checklist to suite your circumstances.

Visit our FAQ page for more tips and great information: Click HERE

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Partner Visa Checklist
  • Date You First Met

  • Date you entered into an exclusive relationship

  • Date you became engaged

  • Date you lawfully married

  • Date you entered into a defacto relationship.

Know Your Relationship Dates

This may seem quite obvious but it is important to be consistent in regard to your relationship dates throughout the visa application. Repeat these dates often and ensure you have your story memorised for each date. For instance when did you become engaged? or when did you enter into a defacto relationship? Important dates to note for your relationship timeline:

Age Limits

There are no upper age limits that apply to the applicant or sponsor for partner visa applications. When there is an age gap this is generally not an issue provided that the relationship is genuine. 

You will be expected to provide birth certificate, passport as evidence of your age.

DeFacto Relationships

For the purposes of Australian immigration and partner visa applications, a person is in a defacto relationship with another person when:

  • The couple are not legally married to each other

  • They are not related by family

  • The have a mutual commitment to a shared life to the exclusion of all others, they are in an exclusive relationship.

  • The couple are in a genuine and continuing relationship

  • They reside together or do not live separately and apart on a permanent basis.

A defacto relationship must have continued or being in existence for a minimum of 12 months immediately before making the partner visa application. 

12-Month Relationship Requirement

When the couple are married or they are in a civil union or their relationship is registered, this may be an opportunity to bypass the 12 month defacto rule. In this instance there is no length of time prescribed for a relationship. In these circumstances you may not be required to meet 12 month defacto requirement if:

  • Your defacto relationship is registered in a State or Territory of Australia

  • The couple are lawfully married.

  • Compelling and compassionate circumstances exist for grant of the visa.

Top Tips Partner Visa Australia 820

Don't rush into registering your relationship because you read online it is the 'right thing' to do. Each case varies, this important event should fit into your relationship timeline at the 'right time'. Obtain advice from a professional to ensure your timing is correct for this big step of your life together.

Our Frequently Asked Questions - 2022

Below is a selection of our most frequently asked questions about Partner Visas Checklist In Australia. The topics and answers are general in nature and should not be regarded as specific to your circumstances; always speak with a Professional & Registered Migration Consultant. 

Do contact Visa Crew if you do not find the answer to your query, Click HERE

Q What Documents Do I Need For A Partner Visa?

When you are submitting a partner visa application you basically need to evidence the 'Four Pillars' of a relationship. This term reflects the key essentials or factors that are written into legislation that the Department of Home Affairs must consider when deciding your onshore or offshore The Four Pillars of a relationship can be summarised into these sections which should be evidenced with multiple forms, statements and other vital documents;: 

  • Financial Aspects Of the Relationship

  • Nature Of The Household

  • Nature Of Commitment of The Couple

  • Social Aspects Of Your Relationship

On top of the four pillars you will also require a checklist  to ensure you provide the correct documents to evidence your identity, health and character, relationship status and essential forms.

Q How Long Until A Relationship Is Defacto?

In immigration terms a relationship is considered 'Defacto' after you have known each other for a minimum of 12 months. Your relationship should be genuine and continuing and  you should live together permanently or not apart o a permanent basis.

Q What Is The Minimum Income To Sponsor My Partner?

Currently in Australia there is no income requirement to sponsor your defacto partner or spouse. You may be unemployed, in receipt of Centrelink, sole trader; no matter your income level you are not required to disclose this. Of course you should have adequate funds to meet the hefty government visa charges and sign a declaration that you understand and agree to your sponsorship obligations. 

Q We Are An LGBT Couple, Can We Apply For. a Partner Visa In Australia?

LGBT Community has been availing of your services for many years for advice and direction when submitting a partner or marriage visa in Australia. There is no discrimination or no 'bar' for same sex couples; all visas in the Australia visa program are open to gat couples. 

Visa Crew is a gay owned business based in Sydney, we are proud to help and be associated with the LGBT community. 

Partner Visa Dependent Child

Q How Long Does It Take For A Partner Visa To Be Approved?

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 Can I Apply For Partner Visa While On A Tourist Visa?

In short the answer is YES, you may apply for a partner visa while you hold a tourist or student visa. In act if you are in Australia and in a relationship then you must have a substantive visa prior o submitting your partner visa. 

Be wary of conditions on your visa which may bar you from applying for another visa, such as condition 8503 or if you are s48 barred.

Q What Are The Minimum Documents I Need?

For partner visas there is no minimum document checklist of forms and evidence that you should provide. Each case will require a separate checklist as each case will be different. Some applicants may have dependents, others may have health issues while some applicants may have a criminal record. All these nuances will require careful scrutiny to ensure you provide supporting documents.

Do remember however you can provide too much evidence; the last thing you want is to provide 20 pages of text messages that have little or no relevance to your relationship. Our recommendation is to get the balance right, jus provide the right amount of evidence; not too much and not too little. 


Character & Health Assessments

Police Certificates for Partner Visa

The sponsoring partner and applicants who are included as an applicant for your partner visa application are required to provide a current National Police Certificate that was issued by the Australian Federal Police (AFP) before you can be granted the visa.


You should provide police checks for other jurisdictions that you have spent 12 months or more in the past 10 years. In some cases you may be eligible for an exemption to provide police checks. 

Our Top Tips 5 Star Partner Visa Australia
  1. Police checks are valid for 12 months from date of issue. Provide these too early and you may need to obtain replacements.

  2. Order your AFP certificate on this LINK; do not use third party providers as these documents will not be accepted by immigration.

  3. Quote legal aliases and official name changes on your police certificates.​

Health Assessment for Partner Visa

Primary applicants and secondary applicants for partner visas are required to attend for a medical examination or assessment. This is requirement, if you do not attend then your visa will not be granted. Medical examinations and x-rays are conducted by BUPA Medical Visa Services if you are in Australia. There are specific immigration panel doctors appointed in each jurisdiction if you reside outside Australia.

Applicants for permanent visas should undergo a medical examination and a chest x-ray. The medical examination may include x-ray and analysis for:

  • Tuberculosis

  • Hepatitis B/C

  • HIV

The Department may request further specialist medical reports relating to other conditions if this is relevant. If you fail the health test your partner visa could potentially be refused. You may however have an opportunity appeal the decision.  This is known as a health waiver (4007)​.

Top Tips Partner Visa Health Insurance

Private healthcare insurance is not required for partner visas in Australia. You may wish to consider arranging your own insurance especially if your country is not covered by the reciprocal health care agreement.

Now We Are Together...


Checklist Of Requirements

Like may other deserving couples, you have fallen in Love and met the perfect man or woman of your dreams; this a great start for any romantic relationship. Now of course you both wish to fulfil your dreams to be reunited in Australia.

When you are committed to your relationship and you have an eligible partner then you are entitled to a visa, it is that simple. What may not be so simple is the amount of evidence you will need to convince the Department of Home Affairs that your entitlement to a visa is indeed genuine. Are you ready to dig deep and compile years worth of bank statements, rental agreements, chat history, social media posts, holiday photos, tickets, written statutory declarations; the list goes on....

Don't be frightened however; although it may seem a daunting task to evidence your relationship, over the years we have helped lots of couples with their dreams to live a happy life together.

Australian partner visas are generally a two or three step process, but no matter how long the process may take we are with you from day one up until the Dept. makes a decision. Our easy step by step guide and customised partner visa checklist will take the stress out of the process for you. In addition to providing you with a custom checklist we also review all your forms and evidence and make recommendations to assist you put the best case forward. This process is not for the faint hearted; do engage a professional Registered Migration Agent to ensure you achieve the outcome you both deserve.

Continue reading our guide and top tips, remember the information is general in nature and should not be taken as specific to your circumstances. At any stage we are happy to assist you, what not contact us for a FREE Call-Back; an initial 10 chat will not cost you anything but have save you a lot. Click HERE

Top Tips Partner Visa Immigration Agent

Registered Migration Agent

When you appoint a professional to advise and submit your partner visa application ensure this person is registered with MARA; the Australian Government body. Any individual offering immigration advice must be registered with MARA. A MARN number or  license is renewed annually with MARA.

Do not give your good hard earn money to unlicensed operators, you have no come-back when your visa is refused or if you are not happy with the shoddy service. For complete peace of mind always use a licensed operator. You may verify our credentials (or anyones licence) on the MARA website: Click HERE 



Birth Certificate Showing Both Parents

Family Book Showing Both Parents

Government Identity Document

Family Census Register

Passport Style Photograph

National Identity Card

International Driving Licence

Other Identity Documents



Marriage Certificate

Relationship Certificate

Form 888 - Declaration

Family Census Register

Written Relationship Statement

820 visa checklist


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AFP Police Certificates

Police Certs/Residence Abroad

Form 80 - Declaration

Military Discharge Papers



47SP - Online

40SP - Sponsorship

888 Witness Declaration

956 - Authority To Act


  •  Primary Applicant: Application Form – apply online through your IMMI A/C

  • Form 80 – Personal particulars for assessment including character assessment

  • Form 40SP – Sponsorship for a partner to migrate to Australia

  • Form 956 – Advice by an immigration agent/authority to act on your behalf 

 Essential Forms

As Registered Immigration Agents we will provide you with all the necessary forms for your visa application. We assist you to complete the forms and review the information prior to submitting your visa application. This ensures everything is completed satisfactorily and in good time.


  • Recent passport sized photographs of each applicant

  • Certified copy of identity details (BIO) page of passport

  • Certified copy of birth certificate, family register or other similar identification

  • Evidence that your sponsor is an Australian citizen, permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen

Identity Documents

Passport photograph may be provided as s digital jpeg file; the Post Office or other provider may do this for you. Ensure your passport and other identity documents are provided in colour, this helps to authenticate your identity. Provide as many identity documents as you can to help speed up the decision process. Non English documents should be translated into English, make sure these comply with immigration specifications. 


  • Current Marriage Certificate, Registered De Facto Relationship Certificate or equivalent documents

  • Divorce Certificates if applicable

  • Proof your relationship is genuine and continuing

  • Evidence of your financials, social proof, the nature of your household,

  • Evidence that you live together or are not permanently living apart

  • Written statements from you and your partner in regard to your relationship

  • Witness statements from friends and relatives who who can vouch for your relationship

  • Statements and documents to show any previous marriage, recognised relationship

  • Birth certificates for any children you share - Showing Parents

  • Cards, letters & various items - Address Evidence

  • Emails and social media conversations - WhatsApp,  

  • Photos of you together with friends/family- Various Albums

  • Evidence that others recognise your relationship

  • Evidence you make decisions and plans together i.e. travel/financial

  • Evidence you spend leisure time together - Hobbies etc.

  • Joint Tenancy/rental agreement/Security bond

  • Joint bank accounts with receipts- Formatted

  • Evidence you own assets together - Car, home, shares, savings

  • Joint credit cards or hire purchase agreements

  • Joint utilitie accounts, like power or phone bills.

relationship history evidence 820

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Relationship History

Ensure your documents are provided in colour. Non English documents should be translated into English, to comply with immigration specifications. Written statements should contain a lot of details about your relationship such as the financial aspects, social aspects, your commitment to each other and your future plans. Nature of your household is also an important aspect of the requirements that should be addressed in your statement. 

The couple should provide ample evidence to demonstrate that that you are re living together permanently, in a genuine and stable relationship. Remember your evidence is always more credible if it is from official sources. For example, a joint tenancy agreement, ATO letter or security bond letter. The more official types of evidence that you provide, the easier it will be for the Dept. to make a decision about your visa application.

We have templates and a variety of fact sheets to assist our clients formulate their evidence; do not stress. Get professional help from the team at Visa Crew; let us help you too!

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  • Australian National Police (AFP) Certificates for the sponsor and each applicant

  • Police Certificates for every country lived in for more than 12 months

  • Military discharge papers for any applicant who has served in the defence force of any country

Health and Character

​Ensure your documents are provided in colour. Non English documents should be translated into English, to comply with immigration specifications. AFP Police certificates are required for all applicants over 16yo. If you have resided abroad for over 12 months in the last 10 years you should obtain police national certificates from those jurisdictions.


The team at Visa Crew can advise you in regard to the police certificates you will need to provide and how to obtain these. We can also generate a medical referral letter (HAP ID) for you to attend your health assessment appointment. We have templates and a variety of fact sheets to assist our clients formulate their evidence; do not stress. Get professional help from the team at Visa Crew. Click HERE for a FREE Call-Back

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