Partner & Family Migration
The Australian government offers a number of family visa options to cover a range of scenarios. This category includes visas for partners, parents, aged dependent relatives, children, adopted children, last remaining relatives and carers.
Australian Partner Visa
Partners of Australian citizens, permanent residents or eligible New Zealand citizens may consider several visa options for permanent migration to Australia. These visa options include –
Provisional Partner Visas – Subclass 820 and Subclass 309 Partner Visa
There subclass 820 visa is for individuals who apply for the Partner visa whilst they are physically present in Australia. The subclass 309 visa is for those individuals who are outside of Australia when they apply.
Provisional Partner visa applicants must be in a married or de facto relationship with an Australian citizen, Permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen.
The subclass 820 or 309 Provisional Partner form part of a two-stage permanent visa process. Two years after the provisional partner visa application is lodged, visa holders who maintain their genuine relationship will qualify for the Subclass 801 or 100 Permanent Partner visa, unless they were in a ‘long-term partner relationship’ (as defined in migration law) on the date the provisional visa application was lodged.
Permanent Partner Visas – Subclass 801 and Subclass 100 Partner Visa
To qualify for the permanent partner visa, two years after applying for the provisional partner visa, applicants must prove they are still in a genuine married or de facto relationship with their partner. Subclass 820 visa holders are granted the subclass 801 permanent visa if the Department of Home Affairs is satisfied the applicant remains in a genuine relationship with their sponsor. Subclass 309 visa holders are granted a permanent partner visa.
There are limited circumstances where provisional Partner visa holders may obtain permanent residence before the initial qualifying period is over. These circumstances include –
- The relationship has broken down and there is a child as a result of the relationship.
- The relationship has broken down as a result of domestic violence.
- The applicant’s partner has passed away and it can be proven that the relationship would have continued if the Australian sponsor had lived.
- At the of application, the visa applicant was in a long term relationship with their partner (as defined in migration law).
Refusal Rate for the Partner Visa
The Department of Home Affairs refuses almost half of all Partner visa applications lodged by individuals who are not represented by a Registered Migration Agent. This statement is based on official data released by the Department of Home Affairs under the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act in Partner Visa Refusal Information
The information released under FOI confirms that in the FY2015-16, that 53.8% of all Partner visa applications lodged by individuals who were not represented by a Registered Migration Agent were refused by the Department of Home Affairs. In the 2016-17 period, 47 % of all unrepresented visa applicants were refused a Partner visa.
Partner visas are usually refused due to a complicated legal or factual issue, or by the failure of the visa applicant to prove they meet the legal requirements for the grant of their visa. For this reason, it is crucial that individual’s applying for a Partner visa seek professional guidance before they begin.
Other Family Visas
Contributory Parent Visa
The Contributory Parent visa is for the parents of a settled Australian citizen, permanent resident or eligible New Zealand Citizen to migrate permanently to Australia. The contributory parent visa options include the following visa subclasses:
- Subclass 143 (Contributory Parent) Permanent visa
- Subclass 173 (Contributory Parent) Temporary visa
- Subclass 864 (Contributory Aged Parent) Permanent visa
- Subclass 884 (Contributory Aged Parent) Temporary visa
Other parent visa options include the subclass 103 and 804 Aged Parent permanent visa. These visas have a low processing priority with the Australian government and both have current estimated processing times of at least 30 years. We cannot assist with subclass 103/804 visa requests.
Subclass 870 Sponsored Parent (Temporary) Visa
The subclass 870 visa is designed to allow the parents of Australian citizens, permanent residents or eligible New Zealand Citizens to spend three or five years in Australia with their children. Unlike other parent visas, the subclass 870 visa does not require the parent to meet the Balance of Family test. However, the parent must have a child who is a permanent resident, Australian citizen or eligible New Zealand citizen.
The subclass 116 Carer visa allows applicants to care for a relative in Australia with a long term or permanent medical condition who is in need of ongoing care. The relative in Australia must have no reasonable access to care options in Australia.
Subclass 114/838 Aged Dependent Relative Visa
The subclass 114/838 Aged Dependent Relative visa allows older individuals to migrate permanently to Australia if they are dependent on a relative in Australia for financial support.
The subclass 101 Child visa allows a child of an Australian permanent resident or a citizen, or eligible New Zealand citizen who is outside Australia to live permanently with the child’s parent in Australia.