Partner visa (subclasses 820 and 801)

Features

The Partner visas (subclasses 820 and 801) allow the partner or spouse of an Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen to live in Australia.

The temporary Partner visa (subclass 820) is granted first and lets you stay in Australia while the permanent Partner visa (subclass 801) is processed.



Note: The documents you need to provide can be found under "Follow these steps".

Eligibility

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

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

Your marriage must be valid under Australian law. This means you must have parental permission if you are 16 or 17 years of age.

You must have been in a de facto relationship for at least 12 months.

Length of stay

  • On the temporary 820 visa, you can stay until a decision is made on your permanent Partner visa (subclass 801).
  • On the permanent 801 visa, you can stay permanently.

Cost

From AUD
7,000

Learn about...​

The process


Obtaining the permanent Partner visa is a two stage process. To be eligible for a permanent partner visa you first need to be granted a temporary partner visa. You apply for both the permanent and temporary visas at the same time and pay only one fee. If you are granted the temporary visa, you are eligible to be assessed for the permanent Partner visa (subclass 801) about two years after you lodged your application. You will need to provide further documents for this assessment.

If you have been in a long term relationship before you lodge your application, the permanent subclass 801 visa will be granted immediately after the temporary subclass 820 visa.

Processing time

Stream75 per cent of applications processed90 per cent of applications processed
​820 - Temporary visa19 Months22 Months
801 - Permanent visa [1]16 Months22 Months

[1] Processing time for subclass 801 Partner (permanent) visa is from date of eligibility (2 years after the 820/801 application is lodged) to finalisation.

Last updated 18 September 2017 (for month ending ​31 August 2017)

Processing times vary.

Long term relationship

If, at the time you apply, you have been in a long term relationship with your partner, your permanent Partner visa (subclass 801) visa will be granted immediately after the temporary Partner visa (subclass 820) visa.

If your current visa is about to end

You can stay in Australia on a Bridging visa if you have already lodged your application.

Eligibility

Age

If you are married, usually you must be 18 or older when you apply. This is because usually, you must be 18 or older for your marriage to be valid under Australian law.

If you are a de facto partner, you must be 18 or older when you apply.

Your relationship

You must be the spouse (married) or de facto partner of an Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen.

You might still be eligible if your relationship breaks down after you lodge your application.

Sponsor

You must have a sponsor, who will be your partner, except if your partner is under 18 years of age.

Health

You must meet our health requirement.

Character

You must meet our character requirement.

Debts to the Australian government

You must have repaid, or have arranged to repay, any outstanding debts to the Australian government.

Cancelled or refused visas

You might not be able to apply for this visa if you have had a visa cancelled or refused while you were in Australia.

Eligibility criteria for the permanent Partner visa (subclass 801)

The visa

What you can do

The temporary Partner visa (subclass 820) lets you stay in Australia until a decision is made on your permanent Partner visa (subclass 801).

Cost

From AUD 7000.

If you hold a Prospective Marriage visa (subclass 300) – from AUD 1170.

You pay only one fee, which covers the permanent and the temporary visa, and you pay this when you lodge your application. In most cases, visa application fees can not be refunded, even if you withdraw your application, or your visa is refused.

Additional family members

There is a fee for any children applying for the visa with you.

Estimate the cost of your application

The visa pricing estimator is an online tool that calculates the total cost of your visa.

                          Visa pricing estimator

Other costs

If you need to have them, you will have to pay other costs such as those for health checks, police certificates and biometrics.

Location

You must be in Australia when you lodge your application and when a decision is made on the temporary Partner visa (subclass 820).

You can be in or outside Australia when a decision is made on the permanent Partner visa (subclass 801).

If you are outside Australia when you want to lodge your application, consider either:

More information is available about partner visa options.

How long the visas lasts

The Partner visa (subclass 820) is a temporary visa. It lasts from the date it is granted until a decision is made on your permanent Partner visa (subclass 801).

The Partner visa (subclass 801) is a permanent visa – it lasts indefinitely. It starts on the date it is granted.

Family

You can include your dependent children or stepchildren in your application.

If you are granted the visa, your children will have the same rights and visa conditions as you.

Your obligations

You and your children must comply with Australian laws and your visa conditions. You can find your visa conditions in VEVO.

Sponsors

Eligibility

Usually, a sponsor is the husband, wife or de facto partner of the applicant.

Limitations on sponsorship

You might not be able to be a sponsor if you hold or have held certain visas and certain circumstances apply to you.

Cost

AUD Nil

How long the sponsorship lasts

Your sponsorship ends two years after your partner is granted their Partner visa (subclass 820).

This is the case even if the permanent Partner visa (subclass 801) is granted immediately after the temporary 820 visa is granted.

Sponsor obligations

Sponsors have certain obligations

Follow these steps

  1. Gather documents

    Documents

    You need to supply all of the documents, except for the character documents, even if you already supplied them for a Prospective Marriage visa (subclass 300).

    Applicant documents

    Sponsor documents

    Dependents under 18

    Dependents 18 or older

  2. Apply

    Apply online

    You must:

    • be in Australia when you apply for the visa
    • have a valid passport.

    Before you start your application, learn:

    Start your application

    If you don’t have an ImmiAccount, you need to create one.

    Create an ImmiAccount

    If you have an ImmiAccount, log in to start your application.

    Log into ImmiAccount

    When you are in ImmiAccount, select New application and then select Family, then Stage 1 – Partner or Prospective Marriage Visa.

    Apply on paper

    You must be in Australia when you apply for the visa.

    Complete Form 47SP - Application for migration to Australia by a partner (552KB PDF).

    Send the following to your closest immigration office:

    • your visa application form
    • your sponsor’s completed application form (Form 40SP - Sponsorship for a partner to migrate to Australia (255KB PDF))
    • your documents
    • your sponsor’s documents
    • the correct application fee. Information about how to pay.

    Lodge the sponsorship form online

    You can lodge your sponsorship form online after your partner has lodged their visa application and given you their Transaction Reference Number (TRN) or application ID.

    You can lodge the form using your partner’s ImmiAccount or your own ImmiAccount.

    If you or your partner has an ImmiAccount, log in to start your application.

    Log into ImmiAccount

    Or, you can create your own ImmiAccount.

    Create an ImmiAccount

    When you are in ImmiAccount, select New application, then select Family, then Sponsorship for a Partner to Migrate to Australia.

    Attach your documents when ImmiAccount tells you to.

    Lodge the sponsorship form on paper

    Complete Form 40SP Sponsorship for a partner to migrate to Australia (255KB PDF).

    Give the completed form and all other documents you need to provide to your partner. Your partner must send all of your documents with their visa application.

  3. Wait for a decision on the temporary visa

    Provide police certificates

    We might ask you to provide police certificates.

    Provide biometrics

    You might need to provide biometrics (fingerprints and photo). We will let you know if you need to provide them.

    Get health checks

    You might need to have health checks. We will let you know if you need them. More information is available about health checks.

    Send more information or documents

      If you did not include all documents when you applied, send them as soon as you can:
    • via your ImmiAccount if you applied online (preferred)
    • via the email address you provided in your application
    • by post.

    We might also ask you to provide more information.

    If your current visa expires

    If your current visa ends before you are granted the temporary partner visa, you can stay in Australia on a Bridging visa A (BVA). You do not have to apply for a BVA; it is automatically granted when you apply for your partner visa. The BVA starts when your temporary visa ends.

    The BVA does not let you travel out of Australia and return. If you want to travel out of Australia and return, apply for a Bridging visa B (BVB).

    BVAs and BVBs that are granted to applicants for this visa allow you to:

    • work in Australia
    • study in Australia (no government support)
    • enrol in Medicare, Australia’s health care scheme.

    More information is available about bridging visas.

    If you cancel a current visa

    If you cancel your current visa you will become an unlawful non-citizen. This means you will not be eligible for a Bridging visa A, B, or C and will generally only be considered for a Bridging visa E. You will not automatically be granted a bridging visa in this situation, and will need to lodge an application for a Bridging visa E.

    Travel outside Australia

    You must tell us if you want to travel outside Australia.

    You can travel outside Australia and return if your current temporary visa lets you. If you hold a Visitor visa, eVisitor or ETA your period of stay will recommence when you return to Australia. This means you will not be granted a Bridging Visa A until the period of stay ends on your visa (usually about three months).

    You cannot travel outside Australia and return if you hold a Bridging visa A (BVA). If you want to travel out of Australia and re-enter, apply for a Bridging visa B (BVB).

    If you hold a Visitor visa, eVisitor or ETA and re-enter Australia during processing, your visa will end when the period of stay (usually three months). This will affect your eligibility for a Bridging Visa A. More information is available about bridging visas.

    Tell us of changes

      You need to update us if:
    • there are any changes to your circumstances, for example, change of address or telephone number
    • you made a mistake on your application
    • you need to provide more information
    • you want to withdraw your application.

    More information is available in the Tell Us of Changes tab.

    Adding children

    You can add dependent children to your visa application before we make a decision on your visa. Send us a completed Form 1436 - Adding an additional applicant after lodgement (364 KB PDF) or attach it to your ImmiAccount.

    More information is available about including family members in your application, including newborn children.

    Relationship breakdown

    If the relationship with your partner has not continued, you might still be eligible for a temporary visa. You will need to contact us in writing. All information you provide to us will remain confidential.

    Information is available about family violence.

  4. Stay on the temporary visa

    There are things you should know and do if you are granted the temporary Partner visa (subclass 309).

    Your obligations

    You and your children must comply with Australian laws and your visa conditions. live You can find your visa conditions in VEVO.

    Do not get another visa

    To get the permanent visa, you must hold a valid temporary Partner visa (subclass 820). If you are granted any other visa, the new visa will replace your temporary Partner visa (subclass 820) and you will not be eligible for the permanent Partner visa (subclass 801).

    New Zealand passport holders

    If you leave Australia and re-enter on a New Zealand passport, you must let immigration officers at the border know that you hold a temporary Partner visa. If you do not do this, you might be granted a Special Category visa (subclass 444) and you will not be eligible for the permanent Partner visa (subclass 801).

    Tell us of changes

    Keep your details up to date, and tell us about any changes to your circumstances . If you have changed your contact details and do not let us know, you might not be granted the permanent visa.

    Travel outside Australia

    You can travel outside Australia as many times as you want on the temporary Partner visa (subclass 820) but you must let us know your travel plans before you leave Australia.

    Adding children

    You can add a dependent child to your visa application at any time before your permanent Partner visa (subclass 801) is granted. The child must:

    Add dependents via your ImmiAccount or complete Form 1436 - Adding an additional applicant after lodgement (364 KB PDF).

    Children coming to Australia must meet our health requirement. Children coming to Australia must also meet our character requirement if they are 16 or older.

    More information is available about including family members in your application, including newborn children.

    If your relationship ends

    If the relationship with your partner has not continued, you might still be eligible for a permanent visa. You will need to contact us in writing. All information you provide to us will remain confidential.

    Information is available about family violence.

  5. Send additional documents for the permanent visa

    When to send your documents

    Your permanent Partner visa cannot be granted until two years have passed from the day you applied for that visa. We will begin assessing your application after that date.

    You will need to provide evidence to show that you and your sponsor continue to be in a spouse or de facto partner relationship since you were granted the temporary Partner visa. The evidence you provide must show that you continue to have a genuine and continuing relationship, live together or not live separately and apart on a permanent basis and have a mutual commitment to a shared life to the exclusion of all others.

    You do not need to wait for us to contact you. You can send your documents no earlier than one month before that date. Do not send your documents too early; we will not begin assessing your application until two years have passed from the day you lodged that application (note: check the Global Visa and Citizenship processing times to see how long it is likely to take to process your permanent Partner visa once you become eligible for grant).

    Documents required

    Documents required for the permanent visa are available from the Permanent Partner Calculator.

    How to send your documents

    Send the documents online

    Even if you applied for the visa on paper, you can send the documents for the permanent Partner visa online if you know your Application ID.

    In the My applications tab, select Family and then Stage 2 – Permanent Partner Visa Assessment.

    Send the documents by post

    Send documents to our Visa and Citizenship Office in Melbourne. Include your full name, date of birth and File Reference Number (FRN) or client ID.

    Do not send by email.

Tell us of changes

How to tell us of changes

To send us forms, other documents or information:

  • if you applied online, send them via your ImmiAccount
  • if you applied on a paper form:
    • by email using the email address you provided in your application
    • by post.

Changes to your circumstances

    Changes in circumstances include, but are not limited to:
  • telephone number
  • address
  • passport
  • birth of a child.

Update your contact details and passport number via your ImmiAccount or complete Form 1022 - Notification of changes in circumstances (266 KB PDF).

If your child is born in Australia after you lodge your application but before a decision is made, complete Form 1022 - Notification of changes in circumstances (266 KB PDF). The child will automatically be added to your application.

Mistakes on your visa application

Tell us if there are any mistakes in your application.

Complete Form 1023 - Notification of incorrect answer(s) (99KB PDF).

Withdrawing your application

You can withdraw your visa application at any time.

Withdrawing your sponsorship

You can withdraw your sponsor form at any time before we make a decision on the permanent visa.

End of the relationship

Tell us if your relationship changes or ends by contacting us in writing. Depending on your circumstances, you might still be eligible for the visa. Information is available about family violence.

Estimate the cost of your visa

* Price will be displayed in Australian dollars unless changed.
The following Visa Pricing Estimator requires you to answer the questions as accurately as possible to provide you with an estimate for lodging a visa application. The estimator might not include the second instalment of the visa application charge which is payable for some visas. Please note this is an estimate for a visa application, if you have already lodged your application and you want to change/add applicants please refer to the Visa Pricing Table. The Department of Immigration and Border Protection Visa Pricing Estimator will give you an estimate of the charges you may need to pay to lodge a visa application. This is paid after you have made your application but before the visa can be granted. Read the department's full disclaimer. The Commonwealth of Australia does not guarantee the accuracy, currency or completeness of any material in the Visa Pricing Estimator.