Australian Spouse Visa
One of the top concerns of foreigners who are in a stable relationship (spouse/fiancé/de facto partner) with an Australian or an eligible New Zealand citizen is about obtaining a permanent visa in Australia.
The first step towards this is the partner temporary visa, where your partner may sponsor you for two years, after which if the relationship continues, you may be eligible for a permanent visa.
The Australian Department of Immigration and Border Protection’s eligibility criteria are:
• You and your partner have a commitment to sharing your life, irrespective of you being legally married.
• For married applicants, the marriage should be legal according to Australian law.
• The relationship is ongoing and genuine.
• You and your partner have been living together on a permanent basis.
• You and your partner have been in a relationship for at least the last 12 months, which involves showing proof of living together during this period, before applying for this visa.
• You both should be above 18 years.
• You meet the health criteria set by the government.
Based on these criteria and certain others (depending on your particular case), here are three types of visa you could apply for:
• If you are in Australia: Partner temporary visa (Subclass 820) and permanent visa (Subclass 801)
• If you are outside Australia: Partner temporary visa (Subclass 309) and permanent visa (Subclass 100)
• Prospective marriage visa (Subclass 300)
These visas generally allow you to live, study and work in Australia and also enroll in Medicare. After you get your temporary partner visa, you may be granted permanent visa after about 2 years. The 2-year wait period may be waived if the relationship is more than 5 years old or if there is a dependent child from your 2-year relationship.