The partner visa subclass 820 is a temporary visa for applicants who are in a long-term relationship with an Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen. Getting this visa is the first step you need to take to get a permanent partner visa subclass 801.
What is the 820 Visa?
The temporary subclass 820 partner visa let you stay in Australia while you wait for the outcome of your permanent partner visa subclass 801 visa application. While you’re in Australia on the subclass 820 visa, you can:
- Work in Australia.
- Study in Australia (without government support).
- Access Australia’s public healthcare via Medicare.
- Travel to and from Australia as often as you want.
- Attend free English language classes (up to 510 hours) provided by the Adult Migrant English Program. You can access free childcare while you are attending your English lessons.
Is Visa 820 a Permanent Visa?
The partner visa subclass 820 is a temporary visa that should be applied for at the same time as you apply for the permanent partner visa subclass 801. These visas are onshore partner visas, which means you must be in Australia when you apply. They let you you stay in Australia while you wait for your partner visa application outcome.
Application Process for the 820 Visa
You need to apply for your temporary partner visa and permanent partner visa subclass 801 at the same time. You will pay the application fee when you lodge your application. The single application fee covers both visa applications: your temporary visa and your permanent visa.
The processing time for the temporary subclass 820 visa is usually between 23 – 28 months. Here’s what the visa application process looks like:
Step 1: Get help with your application. The Australian Government suggests that those submitting a partner visa application should seek assistance from a migration agent – like the migration lawyers at Altria Law.
Step 2: Gather your documents. You need to show that you meet health requirements and pass a background check. You will also need to supply documents that prove your identity and relationship with your partner. The document requirements you need to meet to prove your de facto relationship to the Australian Government are very strict.
Step 3: Apply for the visa. You must apply online while you are in Australia. You cannot apply for this visa (or the permanent visa 801) while you are overseas.
Step 4: Wait until your visa is granted. While you wait for your visa outcome, you need to keep all your information up to date. You may need to attend a health exam, gather additional documents, submit your biometrics, and fix mistakes on your visa application during this time. You can add family members to your application while you wait too. You (usually) need to remain in a relationship and living together with your spouse or de facto partner during this time.
Step 5: Receive your visa outcome. You need to be in Australia when a decision is made about your application. When you receive your visa outcome, you will receive a letter (usually sent online) which tells you whether your temporary visa is granted.
If it is, you find out your visa grant number, when your visa starts and if there are any visa conditions. You are not usually granted permanent residence at this stage, but it is possible if it has been more than two years since you lodged your visa application. If your visa is refused, you will find out why and whether you can review the decision. Your application fee won’t be refunded if it is refused.
Are you Eligible to Apply For the Subclass 820 Visa?
The Department of Home Affairs outlines 6 eligibility criteria for the partner visa subclass 820. You may be eligible if you meet all the requirements at the time of application. These are that you:
- Have not had a visa cancelled or application refused in the past.
- Meet relationship requirements, including that you and your de facto partner or spouse are living together.
- Have a sponsor.
- Be 18 years of age or older (usually).
- Meet health and character requirements.
- Pay any debts you owe to the Australian Government.
- Show that the visa grant is in the best interests of your child or children, if you have any.
You must be married or de facto relationship with an Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen. If you are married, your marriage must be valid under Australian law.
This is why applicants must be 18 years old or older in most cases. To be considered the de facto partner of your sponsor, you must meet the 12 month cohabitation requirement before you apply.
This means you must have been living together for 12 months. Any period of time you spent dating, but not living together, or in an online relationship does not count towards you and your partner meeting the de facto relationship 12 month cohabitation requirements.
Your relationship must be genuine, continuous, an to the exclusion of all others. You must have met each others extended family members, share financial commitments, and be planning for the future together.
Your partner must sponsor you to live in Australia. Your sponsor must be deemed suitable to sponsor, must be 18 or older and must disclose details of any relevant offences (including violent offences).
In some cases, a person may not be able to sponsor someone else if they held a subclass 300 visa, partner visa, contributory parent visa, or woman at risk visa. Whether or not applicants who previously held these visas are eligible to apply depends on the circumstances. You should speak with your migration agent if this applies to you.
From 2021 onwards, if your Australian partner is not an Australian citizen, they may need to pass an English language test to sponsor you.
Health and Character Requirements
You will need to attend a medical appointment with an approved medical practitioner. You don’t need to be in perfect health, you just need to be free from any disease or condition that poses a threat to public health, may result in significant healthcare and community service costs, or may place demand on healthcare or community services that are in limited supply.
You will also need to show police certificates and pass a background check.
What are the Benefits of a Partner Visa Subclass 820?
There are many benefits of the temporary partner visa subclass 820. You can stay in Australia with your Australian partner while you wait for the visa processing time to pass. You can work or study in Australia and access healthcare. And, importantly, this visa puts you on the pathway to permanent residency with an 801 visa.
An added benefit is that you can continue your long term relationship in Australia on a bridging visa while you wait for your temporary visa outcome. You may need a bridging visa if your previous Australian visa expires while you wait for your temporary visa application to be considered by the Australian Government. You should reach
Application Fees for Lodging a Partner Visa Subclass 820
The application fees for most applicants are $7,715. This is the fee for both the temporary partner visa subclass 820 and the permanent partner visa subclass 801. You apply for both visas at the same time. If you have been granted a prospective marriage visa subclass 300 first, your fees are lower – starting at $1,285.
What Happens After 820 Visa is Granted?
Once you have received your temporary visa, you need to wait until you become eligible for permanent residency. You may become an Australian permanent resident two years after you lodge your application. But, the processing time for the permanent 801 visa is 12 months to 21 months after you receive your temporary partner visa.
You must hold a temporary partner visa subclass 820, before your permanent 801 partner visa is granted. Sometimes both visas are granted at the same time, if it has already been more than two years since you submitted both partner visas. But not always.
If you receive your partner visa subclass 820 then need to wait for your 801 partner visa, you will need to comply with the visa conditions on your temporary visa. You may need to provide updated documents, including an up-to-date health exam and police check. You must meet the requirements for your permanent visa subclass 801 while you wait.
This means you and your spouse or de facto partner will need to continue living together until your permanent residency decision is made.
How Long Does 820 Visa Last?
Your subclass 820 visa lasts until you receive a decision about your permanent visa subclass 801. This is usually 12 months to 21 months. Afterwards, you may get permanent residency which lets you live in Australia permanently.
Find Your Migration Agent At Altria Law
The lawyers and migration agents at Altria Law would love to help you stay in Australia with your spouse or de facto partner. We have the experience and expertise you need to show that your relationship is genuine, continuous, and that you meet all other application requirements for the 820 and the 801 visa at the time of application.
Your permanent visa is just a few clicks away. Get your free 30-minute consultation.