Partner (subclass 801) Visa

  1. What is a partner (subclass 801) visa?
  2. Stages of application and processing time
  3. Eligibility
  4. Marriage requirements
  5. Defacto requirements
  6. What is required to prove a relationship is genuine?
  7. Costs

A partner (subclass 801) visa is an application for permanent residency on the grounds of an established relationship. The application for a partner (subclass 801) visa is lodged with a partner (subclass 820) visa which is a temporary residency which when granted allows for you to stay onshore with your partner.

Stage 1- Subclass 820 Partner visa (temporary)

Application is first assessed on the grounds of the subclass 820 upon satisfying visa grant requirements, the applicant will temporarily be allowed to live, study, work and apply for Medicare onshore, whilst their application for permanent residency i.e. partner (subclass 820) visa is being processed.

If your relationship to the sponsor (your partner) has been long term your subclass 801 and 820 applications will occur at the same time in the duration of stage one and if successful you will be granted permanent residency.

Long term is defined as:

  • 3 years
  • 2 years with a dependent child. Where the applicant and sponsor are the parents.

This will be validated with substantial evidence of the relationship.

Processing time:

Partner (subclass 820) visa

  • 25% of applications: 3 Months
  • 50% of applications: 6 Months
  • 75% of applications: 16 Months
  • 90% of applications: 34 Months

Updated on 2023.07

Stage 2- Subclass 801 Partner visa (Permanent)

2 years after lodgement of your application, specified evidence will need to be provided to the Department of Home Affairs (DOHA) with substantial indication you are still with your partner.

The applicant can still progress for permanent residency and maintain 820 temporary visas where there are circumstances that they could not stay in the relationship, such as domestic violence.

Processing time:

partner (subclass 801)

  • 25% of applications: 6 Months
  • 50% of applications: 13 Months
  • 75% of applications: 16 Months
  • 90% of applications: 26 Months

Updated on 2023.07

  • You must be 18 years or older (exceptions for marriage with parental consent)
  • Married or Defacto relationship with an Australian citizen or permanent resident. In some cases, an eligible New Zealand citizen
  • An Australian citizen/permanent resident must sponsor the applicant (If under 18, sponsor is the partner’s parent/guardian)

Your sponsor must past a specific character assessment with all relevant police and health checks

To further see if you are eligible you can use our partner visa eligibility tool.

Will my relationship qualify for the permanent partner (subclass 801) visa?

You must meet one of the two categories: married or defacto relationship


Your marriage must satisfy the following:

  • A legally recognised valid marriage in Australia
  • You and your partner are in a committed monogamist relationship (to the exclusion of all others) and a mutually shared life
  • Your relationship is authentic, genuine and continuing
  • You either live together or if separately it is in a temporary basis

If you are not legally married

  • You have been in a defacto relationship for a minimum of 12 months. Time spent dating or in an online relationship might not count as being in a de facto relationship.
  • You are committed to life with your partner (permanently and to the exclusion of all others)
  • You either live together or if separately it is in a temporary basis
  • You are not related by family


  • You can demonstrate compelling and compassionate reasons exist
  • The sponsoring partner is/was a holder of a permanent humanitarian visa, where your relationship existed and was disclosed before the grant of this visa
  • Your sponsor has applied for a humanitarian visa
  • Your relationship is registered with an Australian state/territory authority, such as a registry of births, deaths and marriages
What determines a relationship is genuine?

When determining a relationship is genuine the department of home affairs (DOHA) and immigration will assess validity via the following categories that must be shown throughout the entire relationship and not just at date of application:

Financial: Proof of joint assets (real-estate or other relevant assets) and joint financial responsibility

Social: Third party knowledge of the relationship can be demonstrated

Household: Recognised shared household responsibilities

Nature of commitment: You can demonstrate lifelong commitment to only each other and to the exclusion of all others

As well as the department requires a statutory declaration by the sponsor that describes your

  • financial commitments
  • the nature of your household
  • the social aspects of your relationship
  • the nature of your household
Cost of application

You paid for this visa when you made your combined application for the  temporary and permanent partner visas.

Note: You might have to pay other costs such as those for health checks or police certificates.

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