Partner Visa for Couples in a De Facto Relationship Living Together for 12 Months or More

Do I Qualify to Sponsor My Partner for a Partner Visa?

The sponsor (you or your partner) must be an Australian citizen or permanent resident, or an eligible New Zealand citizen, in order to sponsor your partner. There are certain circumstances where the sponsor may not be able to sponsor the partner, for example, if the sponsor has sponsored another partner before in the last 5 years.

If You Have Been in a De Facto Relationship for 12 Months or More:

•If your partner is applying in Australia, his/her current visa conditions must allow him/her to make an application for a partner visa onshore.
• You and your partner must have been in a de facto relationship for the entire 12 months immediately prior to lodging your application.
• You and your partner must show a mutual commitment to a shared life to the exclusion of all others.
• You and your partner must have been living together under the same roof, or if not, any separation must be only temporary.

What Happens Next?

•If lodged onshore, your sponsored partner will be issued with a Bridging Visa to keep them in Australia lawfully once the visa they are on expires while waiting for the partner visa to be assessed;
• If lodged offshore, you and your sponsored partner will need to live in their home country until the visa is assessed, which will be by the offshore Australian post;
• Your sponsored partner will be issued a Temporary Partner Visa, valid until a decision is made on his/her permanent visa, which is usually two years after the initially applied.
• After two years, provided you and your partner can demonstrate that the relationship is ongoing and genuine; your sponsored partner will be granted Permanent Residence.
• In certain circumstances the two-year period can be waived, such as if you and your partner have been living in a de-facto relationship for three or more years, or you have a child from the relationship.


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