Partner (Provisional) visa (subclass 309) and Partner (Migrant) visa (subclass 100)

Features

The Partner visas (subclass 309 and subclass 100) allows:

the spouse or de facto partner of an Australian citizen, permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen to travel to and live in Australia

Requirements

You might be able to get this visa if you are married to or in a de facto relationship with an:

Australian citizen
Australian permanent resident
eligible New Zealand citizen
NOTE: You must be outside Australia when you apply

The Partner (Provisional) visa (subclass 309) allows you to live in Australia if you are the spouse or de facto partner of:

The Partner (Provisional) visa (subclass 309) is the first stage towards a permanent Partner visa (subclass 100). You lodge only one application for your temporary and permanent visas and pay one application charge. Your application is processed in two stages, about two years apart.

You must be outside Australia when you apply and also when the Partner (Provisional) visa (subclass 309) is granted. You can be in or outside Australia when Partner visa (subclass 100) is granted.

More information

More information is available from the Partner Migration booklet.

source: Department of Immigration and Border Protection

The Partner (Provisional) visa (subclass 309) lets you:

  • enter Australia and stay here 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

If you are later granted a permanent visa, you can:

  • 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

Before you apply

Your passport:

You need a valid passport or other travel document for this visa. If you plan to get a new passport, you should do so before applying for your visa. If you get a new passport after you have lodged your application, give the details of your new passport to one of our offices.

You might be able to update your passport details using ImmiAccount.

source: Department of Immigration and Border Protection

You must be outside Australia and married or in a de facto relationship with:

  • an Australian citizen
  • an Australian permanent resident
  • an eligible New Zealand citizen

You must be in a genuine and ongoing relationship. You must live with your partner or, if you do not, any separation must be only temporary.

Both parties must freely consent to the relationship.

You can apply if you intend to marry your partner before a decision on your visa is made.

In most cases, permanent residence cannot be granted less than two years from when you lodge your application. You could be granted a permanent visa without having to fulfil the usual two-year waiting period if:

  • at the time you apply, you have been in a partner relationship with your partner for three years or more, or two years or more if you and your partner have a dependent child of your relationship
  • your partner holds or held a permanent humanitarian visa and you were in the relationship before the visa was granted and this relationship was declared to the department at the time

Married applicants

Your marriage must be valid under Australian law. Underage, polygamous and same-sex marriages are not legal in Australia. The marriage could be valid under limited circumstances if one person is younger than 18 years of age. Same-sex couples can apply for this visa based on their de facto relationship.

De facto applicants

Your de facto relationship must have existed for at least 12 months immediately before you apply for this visa. Time spent dating does not count towards the length of your de facto relationship.

You might be granted a visa without having been in a de facto relationship for 12 months if:

  • you can demonstrate compelling and compassionate circumstances, such as having dependent children
  • your partner has been granted a permanent humanitarian visa and your de facto relationship existed before it was issued, and you told us about the relationship before the humanitarian visa was granted
  • your de facto relationship has been registered in Australia (this is not available in all states and territories)

You must be older than 18 years of age and not be related to your partner by family. This means you cannot be an ancestor or descendant of one another, or have a parent in common.

Health requirements

You must meet certain health requirements. The results of your health examinations are generally valid for 12 months.

This applies to all members of your family unit included in your application, whether they are migrating or not.

You are able to organise your health examinations upfront before lodging a visa application.

Character requirements

You must meet certain character requirements. You must be prepared to provide a police certificate from each country you have lived in for 12 months or more during the past 10 years after you turned 16 years of age. Do not arrange for police certificates until we ask you to.

This applies to you and all members of your family unit listed in your application, whether they are migrating or not.

Debts to the Australian Government

You must have no outstanding debts to the Australian Government or have arranged to repay any outstanding debts to the Australian Government before this visa can be granted.

Provide biometrics

You might be asked to provide biometrics (a scientific form of identification) as part of the application. Countries and visa subclasses included in the biometrics program has more information.

Including family in your application

You can include your child/step-child in your visa application.

For detailed information regarding who you can include in your application see including family members in your application.

The application must include documentary evidence of their relationship to you.

Members of your family unit must be able to show that they meet health and character requirements.

source: Department of Immigration and Border Protection

This information is for people who have already been granted a Partner (Provisional) visa (subclass 309). It explains your rights and obligations.

How long your visa lasts

Your Partner (Provisional) visa (subclass 309) is valid until:

  • a decision is made about your permanent visa
  • you are granted another type of visa
  • your provisional Partner (Provisional) visa (subclass 309) is cancelled
  • you withdraw your application for a Partner (Migrant) visa (subclass 100)

Keep your visa valid

You must have a valid Partner (Provisional) visa (subclass 309) to be considered for a permanent visa.

If you are granted any other visa before you receive your permanent Partner visa (subclass 100), your temporary Partner visa might no longer be valid. This means your application for your permanent visa will be refused.

If you have a New Zealand passport

If you have a New Zealand passport you might automatically get a Special Category visa (subclass 444) when you arrive in Australia. Your temporary Partner visa will then no longer be valid. You can avoid this by telling the immigration officer at the border that you have a temporary Partner visa.

What this visa lets you do

The Partner (Provisional) visa (subclass 309) lets you:

  • enter Australia and stay here 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

Your Permanent Partner visa

You can expect the following:

  • About two years after you lodge your application for this visa, you will be assessed for the permanent Partner visa (subclass 100)
  • About three months before you are assessed, we will send you a letter asking you to provide more information
  • Whether you applied for your temporary partner visa using a paper form or online, you can provide this information online at Partner visa application – information for permanent stage processing

Contact our nearest Australian office if two years have passed since you lodged your visa application and you have not yet received this letter.

A permanent Partner visa can be granted earlier if either:

  • your spouse or de facto partner dies, the relationship would have continued if they had not died, and you have developed close business, cultural or personal ties in Australia
  • the relationship breaks down and there is a child of the relationship for whom you share responsibility
  • the relationship breaks down due to family violence

Report changes in circumstances

You must tell us if your circumstances change. This includes a new residential address, a new passport, or a pregnancy, birth, divorce, separation, marriage, de facto relationship or death in your family.

Please report changes in your circumstances via ImmiAccount. If you are not able to use ImmiAccount, you can use the following forms:

  • Form 929 Change of address and/or passport details — if you move to a new address or change your passport
  • Form 1022 Notification of changes in circumstances — if there are other changes in your circumstances

If you do not provide us with the details of any new passport issued to you, you could experience significant delays at the airport and may be denied permission to board your plane.

If you applied online, you might be able to update your address and passport details using ImmiAccount.

You must also tell us if your relationship with your partner ends. Family violence provisions has more information if your relationship ends because of family violence.

source: Department of Immigration and Border Protection

You and your family must comply with all visa conditions and Australian laws.

Enter Australia

We will tell you the date by which you must enter Australia. If you do not enter Australia by this date, your visa could be cancelled. Contact us if you cannot arrive by this date.

Any family members who come with you to Australia might have conditions on their visas, including:

  • they cannot enter Australia before you
  • they cannot marry or be in a de facto relationship before they enter Australia

We will tell you if this is the case.

source: Department of Immigration and Border Protection

To be a sponsor you must:

  • be an Australian citizen, an Australian permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen
  • be married, be in a de facto relationship with your partner, or intend to marry before the visa is decided
  • be older than 18 years of age

If you are married and younger than 18 years of age, a parent or guardian must be the sponsor. That parent or guardian must be an Australian citizen, an Australian permanent resident or an eligible New Zealand citizen.

Australian permanent residents or eligible New Zealand citizens are expected to be living in Australia. Eligible New Zealand citizens might need to have a health examination or character check. We will tell you if you need these checks.

If you have been granted a Woman at Risk (subclass 204) visa in the last five years, you cannot sponsor:

  • someone who was your partner when you were granted a Woman at Risk visa (subclass 204)
  • a previous partner that you did not tell us about when you were granted your Woman at Risk visa (subclass 204)

Limitations on sponsorship

You cannot be a sponsor if you:

  • were sponsored for a Partner or Prospective Marriage visa within the last five years
  • have successfully sponsored two people for migration to Australia on a Partner or Prospective Marriage visa
  • have successfully sponsored another person for migration to Australia on a Partner or Prospective Marriage visa within the last five years

Your sponsorship could still be approved in compelling circumstances, such as:

  • your previous partner has died or abandoned the relationship, leaving you with young children
  • your relationship with your current partner has been longer than two years
  • you and your current partner have dependent children from your relationship

Contributory parent visa holders

There might be limits on your sponsorship if:

  • you were granted a permanent Contributory Parent visa on or after 1 July 2009
  • you were in a partner relationship on or before the Contributory Parent visa grant date
    and
  • your partner did not apply for the Contributory Parent visa at the same time as you, or they withdrew that application (before it was finalised)

The sponsorship could still be approved if:

  • 5 years have passed since your Contributory Parent visa grant date
  • your partner did not apply at the same time as you due to compelling reasons, (other than financial reasons)
  • your partner applied at the same time as you but withdrew their application for compelling reasons (other than financial reasons)

Best interests of the child

This visa will not be granted if it is against the best interests of a child younger than 18 years of age. There is more information in measures for the protection of children.

Family violence protection measures

If your partner’s visa application was made on or after 18 November 2016, you will be required to:

  • provide police checks to the department when requested and
  • consent to the department disclosing any conviction for a relevant offence to the applicant(s) you are sponsoring

Your sponsorship will not be approved if you have a conviction for a relevant offence and a substantial criminal history. A relevant offence includes, but is not limited to offences involving violence, intimidation, breaching a protection order, people smuggling, human trafficking and weapons. Family violence protection measures web page has more information.

How to apply to be a sponsor

This information explains what you need to do to apply to sponsor someone for a Partner (Provisional) visa (subclass 309/subclass 100).

To apply to be a sponsor, complete:

  • 40SP Sponsorship for a partner to migrate to Australia
  • Form 40SP’ Form 40SPSponsorship for a partner to migrate to Australia

Your partner will lodge this form with their visa application. If you apply online, your partner will need to lodge their visa application and get a TRN (Transaction Reference Number) before you can lodge your sponsorship form (Form 40SP). You will need your partner’s TRN in order to complete the sponsorship form.

Sponsor obligations

As a sponsor you must provide accommodation and financial support for your partner and their family for up to two years following visa grant or first entry into Australia including any period they take English language courses (if needed).

source: Department of Immigration and Border Protection

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