Same Sex Partner Visas

Love is international. It sees neither colour, nor borders. We know that being able to live together in Australia is vital to so many today. PocketLegal has expertise in same sex partner visas – we will navigate the legal requirements so that your relationship can blossom in Australia.

Australia is strict about its migration policies and enforces them – but it does allow for pathways when a serious relationship exists between an Australian and someone from another country.

Same sex Partner visas can be applied for on the basis of either one of the following 3 types of relationship:

  1. Marriage
  2. Defacto
  3. On the basis of a tangible future plan to get married

With the passing of the Marriage Amendment (Definition and Religious Freedoms) Act in 2017, marriage was expanded to include same sex couples. This means that partner visas can be applied for by married same sex couples. This also has implications for other visa applications where a partner is being included by the primary applicant.

Partner Visa – Married Couple

To apply as a married couple the visa applicant needs to be married to an Australian citizen or permanent resident. The marriage could have taken place in Australia (ie since December 2017), or in a country that recognises same sex marriage. The Marriage Act requires that a 30 day notice period must be given before a marriage can take place in Australia.

Defacto Visa

If your partner and yourself live together, you can apply for a partner visa on that basis. Australian legislation requires the defacto circumstances to have been in place for a period of 12 months or more. However in certain Australian states, including NSW, couples can register their relationship with the NSW Registry of Births Deaths & Marriages and this can substitute for the 12 months defacto period.

Prospective Marriage Visa

A Prospective Marriage Visa is a visa designed for an applicant to come to Australia for the purpose of their wedding. The visa gives the applicant a 9 month window within which the marriage has to take place. Once the marriage has occurred, the couple will lodge an onshore partner visa (subclass 820).

Onshore Partner Visa – Subclass 820

Partner visas can be lodged whilst the applicant is physically in Australia. This is option is preferred by many couples, as it allows the applicant to receive a bridging visa entitling them to remain in Australia while the visa gets processed. The bridging visa allows the applicant to work in Australia, and receive Medicare. The processing time is approximately 2 years.

Offshore Partner Visa – Subclass 309

This visa is lodged whilst the couple (or just the applicant) is overseas. Once the visa has been granted, the applicant can then enter Australia on the visa. This is a suitable pathway for expats, or in situations where it is not possible for the applicant to enter Australia on a different visa. The processing time is approximately 2 years.

Prospective Marriage Visa – Subclass 300

The prospective marriage visa is a temporary nine month visa allows the applicant to come to Australia for the ceremony. Once granted, the applicant can be in Australia for 9 months. Processing time is approximately 2 years. 

If you would like to speak to us about your same sex partner visa, give us a call or fill out the form on this page.

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