Updated: Jan 17, 2019
When you are applying for certain visas in Australia and cannot satisfy the 12 month DeFacto requirement, you may wish to consider registering your relationship. Registering your relationship is an easy and inexpensive way to formalise your de facto status and formally express your commitment to each other.
There are benefits for migration purposes which means you will not have to satisfy any other criteria in order to prove that you are in a de facto relationship.
If you wish to include your spouse for the following visas and do not meet defacto criteria, registering with a State or Territory in Australia may be an option to consider.
• Permanent visas
• Business Skills (Provisional)
• Student visas
• Partner visas In Australia
• General Skilled Migration visas
How Do I Register Our Relationship In NSW | New South Wales
Provided at least one partner lives in NSW, you can apply to register a relationship in NSW.
You may Apply by post, or in person to register a relationship
The NSW Relationships register commenced operation 1 July 2010. It provides legal recognition for a couple, regardless of their sex, by registration of the relationship.
Adults who are in a relationship as a couple, regardless of sex, can apply for registration of their relationship, provided at least one of them lives in NSW. Adults in both heterosexual and same-sex relationships are eligible to register.
A relationship cannot be registered if either person is:
under 18 years old
in another registered relationship
in a relationship as a couple with another person, or
if they are related by family.
A couple does not have to live together to be eligible to register their relationship.
Same Sex Marriages
Same Sex couples may register their relationship prior to getting married. You may wish to do this for instance, if you are applying for a Partner visa in Australia.
How to apply
To apply, partners make a statutory declaration stating they:
wish to register the relationship,
are in a relationship as a couple with the other person,
are not married or in a relationship as a couple with anyone else and that they are not related to each other by family,
are not in another registered relationship whether in NSW or in another Australian jurisdiction, and
do or do not reside in NSW (as at least one member of the couple must reside in NSW).
When you apply, proof of identity is required for each person along with payment of a fee.
Couples who apply don't have to provide any further documentary evidence or proof of their relationship. However, it should be noted that it is an offence to wilfully make a false statutory declaration knowing its contents to be untrue or to provide false and misleading information in such a context. Penalties of up seven years imprisonment may be imposed for making a false declaration for material gain.
Once an application is made, there is a 28-day cooling off period in which either party can withdraw the application. After that time, the Registrar will register the relationship and issue the couple with a certificate recording the event if the appropriate application has been submitted and the fee paid.
Things To Keep In Mind
Couples in registered relationships will be recognised as 'de facto partners' for the purposes of most legislation in NSW, and will also be subject to certain obligations or restrictions under NSW law.
This means people in registered relationships will be able to rely on their certificate of registration to access various entitlements, services and records under NSW law. Registered couples may be able to access more easily, key benefits and rights under NSW legislation. In situations that are not governed by legislation, service providers may choose to accept registration of a relationship as proof of the legitimacy of that relationship.
If you decide to take your partner's name when changing your identification with authorities such as Roads & Maritime Services or Australian Passports Office, you may be asked to show a formal change of name certificate. Please check with the relevant authority in each case to determine their specific requirements.
Tel: +61 (02) 8011 4922
Mobile: +61 455 295 988
Michael Dooley | Registered Migration Agent | MARN 1789997