Family Visa


Partner visa (Temporary) Subclass 820

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Features of 820/801 partner visa – Temporary to permanent residency in Australia

The partner or spouse of an Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen is allowed to live in Australia through the use of a Partner visa (subclasses 820 and 801).

The temporary Partner visa (subclass 820) lets you stay in Australia and is granted first, while after 24 months you can be eligible for a permanent Partner visa (subclass 801).


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

  • An Australian citizen

  • An Australian permanent resident

  • An eligible New Zealand citizen

You could be granted an 820/801 visa if:
  • Under Australian law, your marriage must be valid, meaning you will require parental permission if you are under 16 or 17 years of age

  • You are required to be in a de facto relationship for at least 12 months

  • If you’re inside Australia at the time of application

  • You already hold another visa type, e.g. student visa, visitor visa or working holiday visa.

  • You do not have an “8503 – No further stay” condition.

  • Meet health and character requirements

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


  • From AUD 7,850

The process​

The permanent Partner visa is a two stage process, which requires you to be granted a temporary partner visa then a permanent visa. Both the permanent and temporary visas are to be granted at the same time, where you will only pay one fee. Once having been granted the temporary visa, you can be assessed for the permanent Partner visa (subclass 801) about two years after your application has been lodged. Additional documents will be needed to be provided for this assessment. If you have been in a long term relationship before your application has been lodged, the permanent subclass 801 visa will be immediately granted after the temporary subclass 820 visa.

Subclass 801 Partner (permanent) visa processing time is from the eligibility date (2 years after the 820/801 application is lodged) until the finalization.

If the couple were to register their relationship in the state they live in, the 12-month cohabitation can be waived. Relationship registration is solely for people living in particular states of Australia.

When applying for a partner visa through a de facto relationship, you will need to show you have been with your partner for 12 months. When including a spouse for the visa types below, the 12-month cohabitation requirement additionally applies:

  • Permanent visas

  • Business Skills (Provisional)

  • Student visas

  • Partner visas

  • General Skilled Migration visas

But, you are to be exempt from the 12 month requirement once having registered your relationship in an Australian state or territory. You do not need to be living for the 12 months period, but you are required to display that you are living together.

Under the state law, registration provides legal recognition for you and your partner as a couple and assists with immigration purposes. These requirements include:

  • Both partners must be 18 years old or over

  • Must not be in a relationship as a couple with another person – in particular they must not be married, in a defacto relationship or in a registered relationship

  • Must not be related by family.

  • Same sex and different sex couples can register their relationship.

Long term relationship

If you have been in a long term relationship with your partner or have a child together and been living together for 2 years at the time you lodge your application, you will be granted your desired permanent Partner visa (subclass 801) immediately following the temporary Partner visa (subclass 820) visa.

If your current visa is about to end

If you have already lodged your application, you can remain in Australia on a Bridging visa.


Due to marriage laws in Australia, you must be 18 or older to marry, so if you are married, you are typically required (with some exemptions) to be 18 or older when lodging your application.

You are required to be 18 or older when making an application if you are a de facto partner/in a de facto relationship.

Your relationship

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

if your relationship were to break down after lodging your application, you still may be eligible.


It is a requirement to have a sponsor, who must additionally be your partner (unless your partner is under 18 years of age).

Debts to the Australian government

Any outstanding debts must be repaid, or have been arranged to be repaid to the Australian government.

Cancelled or refused visas

If you have had a visa cancelled or refused whilst in Australia, you may not be able to apply for this visa.

Eligibility criteria for the permanent Partner visa (subclass 801)

  • hold a temporary Partner visa (subclass 820)

  • continue to be in the spouse or de facto partner relationship unless your relationship has ended and there are special circumstances

  • have complied with all Australian laws whilst on your temporary visa.

What you can do

You are permitted to stay in Australia until a decision is made on your permanent Partner visa (subclass 801), through the use of the temporary Partner visa (subclass 820).


From AUD 8,085

Additional family members

For any children applying for this visa with you, there is a fee.

Other costs

If necessary, other costs such as health checks, police certificates and biometrics will have to be additionally paid for.


You are required to be in Australia when lodging your application and when your temporary Partner visa (subclass 820) has been decided on.

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 wishing to lodge your application, you can utilise:

  • A Prospective Marriage visa (subclass 300)

  • A Partner visa (subclass 309 and 100)​

How long the visas last

Temporary Visa

The Partner visa (subclass 820): It lasts from the date it is granted until your permanent Partner visa (subclass 801) has been decided on.

Permanent Visa

The Partner visa (subclass 801): It lasts indefinitely and begins on the date it is granted.


Your dependent children or stepchildren can be included in your application.

Your children will additionally have the same rights and visa conditions as you have if the visa is granted.

Your obligations

You and your children are required to comply with Australian laws and your visa conditions, while you can additionally find your visa conditions under the Visa Entitlement Verification Online system (VEVO).

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.

How long the sponsorship lasts

Your sponsorship ends two years after your partner is granted their Partner visa (subclass 820), even if the permanent Partner visa (subclass 801) has been immediately granted after the temporary 820 visa has been granted.

Partner visas and work rights

Visitor visa to Partner visa: If you were to lodge your 820 partner visa while on an eligible visitor visa, you will then be automatically transitioned onto a Bridging Visa A (BVA) when the visitor visa expires. During the partner visa processing time, you will have full work rights on your BVA.

457/TSS 482 visa to Partner visa:  If you were to be holding a 457 visa and decide to lodge a partner application, you cannot stop working for your sponsor until you have been granted the 820 visa.


Working Holiday 417 visa to Partner visa:  If you decide to lodge a partner visa but possess a 417 visa, applying for a work rights waiver can be very beneficial, as it allows you to remain working longer than the allowed six months for one employer.


Frequently Asked Questions

Who is eligible to apply for a partner visa to Australia?

To be eligible for a partner visa you must be married to an Australian citizen or permanent resident or be in a de facto relationship.

Which type of partner visa shall I apply for?

It depends on the type of relationship you have and where the applicant is when he/she is applying for the visa.

How long does it take for the partner visa application?

The processing times vary according to the circumstances.

Do age gaps matter in partner visa applications?

No, but you have to prove that you are in a genuine and committed relationship.

Do I have to be married?

Australian migration law does not require that an applicant for a partner visa to get married to their Australian sponsor to apply for a partner visa.

However, they are required to present evidence to verify that their relationship is genuine and continuing.

What are the  reasons for a Partner Visa Refusal?

The main reason for a partner visa refusal would be that the Department is not satisfied that you are in a genuine relationship with your partner. There can be other factors also that can lead to a visa refusal, such as your and/or your partners and dependents’ health/character issues.


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