Partner Visa (Onshore) – Subclass 820 and 801

If you’re in Australia and you want to remain here with your Australian partner or an Australian permanent resident, you’ll need to apply for the 820/801 visa.

This is a two-part application, so having a Registered Migration Agent ensures that you are organised and up to date with application deadlines. Two years after lodging the initial application, you must provide Immigration with further evidence of your ongoing relationship.

820 visa

Do you qualify for a visa?

Free Assessment

Can I register my relationship?

The registration process is different in each State and not all States allow couples to register their relationship. You must be living together when your partner visa application is made.

NSW relationship registration

To register in New South Wales, you’ll need to show that one of you has lived in NSW for a short period of time. You’ll need to show specific forms of identification and proof of residence. Registering your relationship in NSW is crucial if you have not lived together for 12 months prior to lodging the application.

QLD relationship registration

Queensland registration requires you to demonstrate that at least one of you has lived in Queensland for a short period of time. You will need to include proof of ID and of living in QLD. You must register your relationship in Queensland to bypass the requirement of living together for the 12 months immediately before visa lodgement.

Victoria relationship registration

To register your relationship in Victoria, you’ll need to show that one of you has lived in Victoria for a short period. Victorian relationship registration is a must if you have not lived together for the past 12 months. You’ll need to show proof of residency, such as utility account or superannuation statements.

ACT relationship registration

Relationship registration in the Australian Capital Territory requires one of you to show two pieces of evidence of residence in the ACT. An ACT relationship registration allows you to apply for an 820 partner visa before the 12 month mark.

South Australia relationship registration

To register in South Australia, you’ll need to show that one of you has been usually resident in South Australia for a short period. This relationship registration allows you to lodge an 820 partner visa even if you have not lived together for the full 12 months.

Tasmania relationship registration

Tasmanian couples need to show that both people are living in Tasmania.  Registering your relationship in Tasmania is essential for couples who have not lived together for 12 months prior to lodging their partner visa application.

WA and NT relationship registration

Unfortunately, relationship registration is not available for migration purposes in Western Australia or the Northern Territory.

We can provide detailed information on relationship registration requirements as part of our partner visa assessment process.

Australian partner visa sponsor approval

The Migration Amendment (Family Violence and Other Measures) Bill is due to be introduced.

It will require your Australian partner to be approved as a sponsor before your partner visa application can be lodged. As this is a new step in partner applications, the processing time of sponsorship approval is not known.

If it takes weeks or months for your Australian partner to be approved and your visa expires in the meantime, you will need to either depart Australia or lodge another visa to remain lawful.

Showing evidence of your genuine and ongoing relationship

You must be living together when your 820/801 visa is lodged.

You need to show evidence of your shared life, such as financial commitment to one another, shared living arrangements and social recognition of your relationship. We help you put together your evidence to demonstrate your commitment to each other. We can also assist with the preparation of your partner visa relationship statement, which is an important document explaining the nature of your relationship.

A permanent residency partner visa straight away

If you have been living with your partner for quite some time – the three years immediately prior to lodging your application – or you have a child together and have lived together for the previous two years, you can apply for the 801 partner visa straight away.

Bridging Visa A

When an onshore partner visa is lodged, an associated Bridging Visa A (BVA) is issued. This BVA only comes into effect at the end of your current visa. For example, if you hold a visitor visa with a three month stay limitation, your BVA would come into effect at the end of your three month stay. In this case, you would have full work rights on your BVA during the partner visa processing time.

If you hold a Working Holiday 417 visa or a Work and Holiday 462 visa, you can request a waiver of the six month work limitation – but only once you have lodged your partner visa. A Registered Migration Agent can submit a work rights waiver on your behalf.

Bridging Visa E

If you hold a visa that expires well into the future (such as 2021), your BVA only comes into effect when your visa expires. Lodging a partner does NOT mean that you can stop working for a sponsor or stop attending classes. This situation generally applies to holders of a 457 visa, a 482 visa or a 500 visa.

In fact, if you do not continue to meet the requirements of your current visa, it will be cancelled and you will need to apply for a Bridging Visa E (BVE). A BVE does not have work rights.

If you hold a BVE and wish to work, you’ll need to draft a submission outlining the financial hardship you and your partner will face if you are unable to work during the partner visa processing time.

Work rights are not guaranteed as it depends on your shared financial situation. If you depart Australia on a BVE, you cannot return. There is no travel facility. Holding a BVE does not impact on partner visa eligibility but it resets your citizenship clock to zero.

It can take more than 20 months for this visa application to be processed. This is why many couples engage a Registered Migration Agent to manage their application. A refusal would mean a lengthy wait whilst an appeal or new application is lodged. Contact us today for further advice.

Am I eligible for an 820/801 onshore partner visa?

You may be eligible if you meet the following criteria:

  • Your partner is an Australian citizen, permanent resident or an eligible New Zealander, and is not limited by previous partner sponsorship.
  • You hold a valid visa (without the “8503 – NO FURTHER STAY” condition) and you are in Australia at the time of application.
  • You are married, you can show solid evidence of living together for 12 months prior to application, or you have registered your relationship (certain states of Australia). Relationship registration waives the 12-month cohabitation requirement. You cannot register your relationship if married to someone else (even if separated for a long time).
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