Applying for a partnership visa can be overwhelming. To help you make your experience less stressful, we talked to professional migration agents and asked them things that visa applicants don’t normally know but should be fully aware of before undergoing the process.
This guide will give you a completely transparent guide that will give you a clear view of what needs to happen before you get to experience the next chapter of your life with your loved one in Australia.
If anything, you need to remember that you’re already extremely lucky because you found love. All else, the visa application process included, should be considered as mere noise. For a noise though, this process is particularly strict, strenuous, meticulous, and draining. So, you better prepare. To do that, simply read on.
1. The process will last for more than a year. You need to be patient
The Department of Immigration can only process 47,825 visas per year but it’s currently handling 70,000 applications. You don’t need complex math to understand how the capacity of the Department of Immigration to handle applications does not commensurate with the onslaught of visa applications that it receives.
This is why it normally takes at least 12 – 18 months for a visa application to be processed. Psyche yourself to be ready for the wait. If you want your visa application to be processed early then you better submit it as soon as possible.
PRO TIP: Do your health and police checks within 8 to 12 months after your initial application to secure that they don’t expire while your application is being processed.
2. It will cost you a lot. You need to be financially ready
Australian partnership visas have the reputation of being one of the most expensive in the world. It can cost you over $7,000. Referred to as ‘love tax’, you need to be ready to shell out this huge amount if you’re truly after spending the rest of your life with your partner.
You should also expect your cost to double if you’d hire a professional representative to handle your visa application. You would also be spending on the following:
- Health examinations
- Police checks in Australia
- Police checks in countries that you’ve lived in for over a year in the last decade
- Migration agent fees, if you’d work with one
- Lawyer’s fees
Ensure that you carefully undertake the whole application process to prevent having to spend again should things not work out.
3. You need to be aware of all the deadlines. Poor timing affects the success of your application.
You should be fully aware of the expiration date of your initial visa. Your partner visa application can be denied if you have records of overstaying (in Australia or other countries) and using an expired visa. Such ground is hard to get around to and will be fatal to your application.
PRO TIP: Secure a bridging visa as soon as your initial visa is close to expiring.
4. You need to prepare and organize all your evidence. Presentation of evidence can make or break your application
The Department of Immigration is particularly strict with its requirements and protocols because there are a high number of people who apply for fraudulent partner visas. These are people who pretend to be in a relationship when they in truth, are mere strangers to each other. This is why the Department requires the following evidence:
- financial evidence
- social evidence
- cohabitation evidences
- proof of co-owned assets
- proof of joint leases
- proof of joint utility bills
The more accurate and detailed your evidence is, the better. All claims should have exact times and dates.
PRO TIP: Feel free to add evidence even while the visa application is being processed. Update your file with evidence of your latest photos and travel documents with your partner.
5. You have to be completely honest at all times
You need to be 100% honest at all times during your partner visa application. According to MigrateWithUs, experts in partner visas always strictly advise their clients to refrain from submitting false claims, falsified documents, and incomplete information.
Lying and being found guilty of it will result in being banned from applying for a period of ten years.
PRO TIP: All minor and criminal charges must be disclosed. Even ones that happened 20 years ago.
6. Your character will be on the line
You need to know as early as now that your good standing and good character will be highly scrutinized. Your criminal records, if any, will be reviewed. You will also be investigated if the Department of Immigration thinks that you’ve undertaken suspicious activities.
Your connection with organizations will be checked to ensure that you are in no way involved in any criminal activity. Any applicant with an offence involving child sex will automatically be denied.
PRO TIP: The Australian government now also requires visa sponsors to submit criminal record checks.
7. You need to be aware of health restrictions
You and your children will have to undergo health checks. This will be the case even if you won’t be bringing your children with you to Australia. This is done by the government to check if there is a possibility that the child you will bring into the country will be a potential burden. You and your children will be asked to declare all medical issues.