The Australian Partner Visa (subclass 801) is a permanent resident visa, allowing you to work, study, travel, and even apply for Australian citizenship later on.
The 801 Visa is the second stage to becoming a permanent resident – before that, you have to apply for a Temporary 820 Visa.
How Long Does It Take to Get 801 Visa After 820?
From the moment you get the 820 Visa, you usually have to wait about two years before you become eligible for an 801 Visa. However, you may be able to get the 820 and 801 visas at the same time if:
- You and your partner have been together for at least 2 years – married or cohabitating – and have a child together.
- You and your partner have been together for at least 3 years – married or cohabitating – and you do not have a child together.
Eligibility Requirements for the Subclass 801
To be eligible for the 801 Visa, you must still continue to be in a relationship with your partner (sponsor). Additionally, you must also still meet the requirements for becoming a permanent resident of Australia, such as:
- Be of good character.
- Have paid all debts to the Australian government.
- Have a valid 820 Visa.
801 Visa Requirements
The documents you will have to submit before you get the 801 Visa include:
- Scanned copies of your passport. Include the personal information, picture, and expiry date page.
- Proof you and your partner are still in a relationship.
- Marriage certificate (for married spouses).
- Proof you are in a committed, monogamous relationship and that you live together (for defacto partners).
- A completed “Statutory Declaration – Partner visa (sponsor)” form. Find it here.
- Proof you and your partner have joint finances. This can be a joint mortgage or bank loan, utility bills in both names, a joint bank account etc.
- Proof you and your partner are equal domestic partners. This can be a statement regarding the way you share housework, proof you have joint custody of your kids, etc.
- Two completed copies of Form 888 “Statutory declaration by a supporting witness in relation to a Partner or Prospective Marriage visa application”. This form is proof that people know of your relationship, and must be completed by family members, friends, or relatives.
- Australian police certificate for yourself and any dependents over the age of 16. Only if you did not submit it for the temporary visa application.
- If there has been a change in your circumstances, provide:
- Completed Form 1022 – Notification of changes in circumstances.
- Additional documents, as related to the change (marriage certificate, adoption If you have a new or updated passport or changed your address.
- Form 929 – Change of address and/or passport details (if applicable).
- Passports of your dependent children.
- Any documents about changes in situation for your dependent children.
- Scanned passport of your spouse (must show their signature) or their Australian driver licence.
- You may have submitted many or all of these documents when you originally applied for the 820/801 Visa joint application. You are submitting them again only to prove that you and your spouse still meet the requirements.
- You have to translate any Australian visa documents you submit. Make sure that the translator is accredited by the National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters.
- You do not need to certify the documents for the Subclass 801 Visa.
- You have to scan (in color) any documents you submit.
- You have to save each documents as a single file, even if it has multiple pages.
How to Apply for the 801 Visa?
Technically, you have already applied for the Permanent 801 Visa when you submitted your application for the Temporary 820 Visa. Now, you must simply submit additional documents so that the Department of Home Affairs can see if you are eligible to become a permanent resident.
- On the ImmiAccount, you have to start the application for “Complete Stage 2 – Permanent Partner Visa Assessment (100, 801)”.
- You will be required to submit similar documents as when you applied for your temporary resident visa, so that you can prove you continue to meet the requirements.
- The earliest you can submit your application is one month before the two years date. Do not submit an application earlier than that, unless you receive an email isntructing you to do so.
NOTE: If you received the 820 and 801 Visas at the same time, you do not need to submit an additional application or documents.
Cost of the 801 Visa
You have paid for the 801 Visa when you initially applied two years ago, so no additional visa fee is required. However, you still have to pay other fees, such as:
- The police certificate.
- Health check fees.
- Marriage certificate.
- Passport-size pictures.
- Mailing or postage fees.
The additional fees for certificates and mail can easily add up to a few hundred dollars.
Is 801 Visa Permanent Residency?
Yes, the 801 Visa leads to permanent residency in Australia. As a permanent resident, you can
- Live and work in Australia indefinitely.
- Study in Australia, and receive government assistance for tertiary education.
- Register for Medicare, Australia’s public healthcare scheme
- Sponsor any other eligible family members to come to Australia
- Leave and re-enter Australia as many times as you wish for the first five years. After five years, you have to either get a Resident Return (RRV) or Australian citizenship.
- Attend English language classes which are administered by the Adult Migrant English Program.
- Become an Australian citizen, a few years later.
Can I Add My Child to the Application?
Yes, you can add a child to your 801 Visa application even if you did not include them in the temporary visa application. To do so, your child has to get a Dependent Child Visa (Subclass 445) and travel to Australia. Then, you must complete Form 1002 “Application by a subclass 445 dependent child for a permanent partner visa” and attach it to your ImmiAccount.
Your child or children must meet the Australian health requirements. If they 16 years of age or older, they also have to get a police certificate.
801 Visa to Citizenship
Four years after you receive your Partner Visa (Sublcass 801), you can apply for Australian citizenship. The citizenship requirements are:
- You must pass a citizenship test, unless you are 60 or older.
- You must not have lived outside Australia for longer than 12 months during the last 4 years.
- You must not have been outside Australia for longer than 3 months in the last 12 months.
- You must be living in Australia at the time of application and you must continue to intend living there.
Can You Become an Australian Citizen by Marriage?
Yes, if you marry an Australian citizen or permanent resident, then you can initially apply for a Partner Visa to join them. A few years after becoming a permanent resident, you may apply for citizenship. You can test your eligibility for citizenship on the Citizenship Wizard tool (an online quiz) on the website of the Department of Home Affairs.
Although permanent residents enjoy a lot of the same benefits as Australian, as a citizen, you wouldn’t need to apply for a Resident Return Visa to be able to travel in and out of the country, you could get an Australian passport, and vote, just to name a few benefits.
Can 801 Visa Be Cancelled?
Yes, an 801 Visa can be cancelled if you no longer meet the requirements of the visa, if you break the rules, or if you provided false information during your application. Before final cancellation, the Department of Home Affairs will notify you why they want to cancel your visa, and you will be able to appeal the decision and provide evidence why you should keep it.
Your partner cannot cancel your visa – at least not once you have already received it. However, they can withdraw their sponsorship while the visa is still processing.
To cancel a visa or withdraw an application, your sponsor would have to submit a written request to the Department of Home Affairs, along with their name and birth date, visa transaction reference number (TRN), and a statement which confirms they want to withdraw the sponsorship.
If your visa has been cancelled, you either have to immediately leave Australia or apply for a Bridging Visa.
What Happens if You Break Up on a Partner Visa 801?
If you have an 801 (Permanent) Visa, and you break up, you will likely still be able to still stay in Australia. However, it could raise questions about the legitimacy of your relationship, and if the DHA thinks that you were never in a relationship, your visa could be cancelled.
However, if you break up before getting the 801 Visa (i.e. you are still a temporary resident), you can stay in Australia only in the following circumstances:
- You were a victim of domestic violence.
- You and your partner have joint custody of an Australian child.
- Your partner has passed away.