The Partner (Provisional) visa (subclass 309) allows you to live in Australia if you are the spouse or de facto partner of:
- an Australian citizen
- a permanent resident
- an eligible New Zealand citizen.
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.
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.
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.
You and all family members must meet certain health requirements. The results of your health examinations are generally valid for 12 months.
You and all family members 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.
To be a sponsor you must:
- be an Australian citizen, an Australian permanent resident oreligible 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 aneligible 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 holdersThere 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
- 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).
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.