Partner Visas

Spouses and partners generally

If you are married, engaged, in a de facto or same sex relationship with an Australian citizen, permanent resident or an eligible New Zealand citizen then you may apply for visa based on the relationship.

The requirements for a spouse visa are that:

  1. the relationship is genuine and continuing; and
  2. you have a mutual commitment to shared life together to the exclusion of others.

Usually, Partner visas are granted in a two-state process with a provisional visa being granted initially, and the permanent visa being considered two years after the initial application.

If you are married

Your marriage must be valid under Australian law. Underage (18 is the minimum age unless there is a court order), polygamous and same-sex marriages are not legal in Australia. Same-sex couples can apply for this visa based on their de facto relationship.

If you are in a de facto relationship

For de facto couples it is necessary to show that the spousal relationship has existed for at least one year, unless there are compelling or compassionate circumstances (such as if there is a child or children of the relationship) and/or if your de facto relationship is registered (and this is not possible in all states).

Although all relationships are different and all couples arrange their affairs differently, some of the things which DIBP will look at in assessing the genuineness of the relationship are:


  • whether the couple live together (or at least, not permanently apart);
  • the history of the relationship;
  • the financial aspects of the relationship (e.g. the existence of joint assets and liabilities);
  • the nature of the household;
  • the social context of the relationship; and
  • general nature of the commitment to each other.

If you are engaged

There is a Prospective Marriage Visa which will allow you to come to Australia to marry your intended spouse and live as husband and wife. You must genuinely intend to marry your fiancé(e) and must intend to live with your fiancé(e) as husband and wife.

It is a temporary visa for nine months. You must be outside Australia when you lodge your application and when the visa is granted. The wedding does not need to be in Australia.