Types of Australian partner visas

The Australian Partner visa category is divided into various subclasses. Their classification is dependent on whether the visa is temporary or permanent as well as where the application is made.

The Department of Immigration and Border Protection assesses applications under a “combined application”. This means that your application will be assessed against the criteria for both temporary and permanent partner visas. You will be issued with the appropriate visa, depending on which criteria you meet.


Temporary Partner visa

The temporary Partner visa is valid for two years, during which your relationship will be assessed to ensure that you intend to stay with your partner. If your relationship passes the test, you will be granted a permanent Partner visa.

Permanent Partner visa

The Permanent Partner visa is valid for five years. This is a permanent residence visa. After holding this for four years, you may apply for citizenship.

All Australian Partner visa applications are assessed on the following:

  • The financial aspects of the relationship, which includes how financial responsibilities are shared or pooled.
  • Nature of the household, which includes how household tasks are divided and shared.
  • Social aspects of the relationship, which includes how you are perceived as a couple in public.
  • Nature of the persons’ commitment to each other, which includes the willingness to move to another country.
  • If you are married to your partner, your marriage must be legally recognised under Australian law. Those in de facto relationships must be able to produce evidence of at least 12 months of cohabitation or registration in terms of a state relationship act.

Below you can find information on four routes to bringing your partner to Australia:

  • Partner (Provisional) visa (subclass 309) and Partner (Migrant) visa (subclass 100)
    Must be applied for outside of Australia
  • Prospective Marriage visa (subclass 300)
    Can be applied for within Australia
  • Partner visa (subclasses 820 and 801)
    For couples engaged to be married
  • New Zealand Citizen Family Relationship (Temporary) visa (subclass 461)
    For those with New Zealander partners

Specialist immigration advice and services

Partner (Provisional) visa (subclass 309) and Partner (Migrant) visa (subclass 100)

The Partner (Provisional) visa (subclass 309) is a temporary visa while the Partner (Migrant) visa (subclass 100) is a permanent visa, usually granted to people who hold a temporary Partner visa (subclass 309) after two years.

Should you wish to travel to Australia while your Partner visa is being processed, you are able to do so provided you secure an appropriate visa (i.e. a Visitor visa).

Prospective Marriage visa (subclass 300)

The purpose of this permit is to allow the unmarried partners of Australian citizens to travel to Australia to get married and is granted for nine months. As this is a temporary visa, you must be outside of Australia when you apply for the visa as well as when it is granted.

The Prospective Marriage visa has unrestricted work rights. The holder is required to marry their partner and apply for the Australian Partner visa before the visa expires.

This visa is often referred to as the fiancé visa and is used by unmarried individuals who cannot show that they have cohabited for 12 months.

Specialist immigration advice and services

Partner visa (subclasses 820 and 801)

As subclasses 820 and 801 cover permanent Partner visas, you may apply from within Australia.

In order to apply, you must hold a valid Australian visa (excluding a Bridging, Criminal Justice or Enforcement visa) or be eligible for a waiver. In addition to this, these applicants must not hold a visa with condition 8503 which would prevent them from making a further application in Australia.

You may apply for this visa if you possess a Bridging visa which allows you to live and work in the UK while your Partner visa is processed. Applications for the Partner visa can take a year or more to process.

New Zealand Citizen Family Relationship (Temporary) visa (subclass 461)

This visa allows a non-New Zealand family member of a New Zealand citizen who is living in Australia, to live and work in Australia for up to five years.

This is a five-year provisional visa that will not lead to permanent residency but can be renewed in Australia as required.

  • live, work and study in Australia for five years from the date your visa is granted
  • travel to and from Australia as many times as you want during the five-year period

Email our Australian migration team at migration@1stcontact.com with a summary of your relationship and intended migration date or use our free online visa assessment tool to see your options.

Australian visa assessment

Answer a few questions and we'll let you know if you're eligible to live and work in Australia.