Major Changes Ahead For Partner Visa Applications
What are the changes?
The Australian Government has passed the Migration Amendment (Family Violence and Other Measures) Bill 2016 which will require sponsor’s submit and be approved their sponsorship application prior to a Partner visa application being lodged.
Essentially what this means for applicants is that enough time must be left to enable their Australian partner (sponsor) to submit and be approved their sponsorship before they lodge their Partner visa application. This may cause issues for clients onshore in Australia with an imminent visa expiry due to the delay involved in having the sponsorship approved before the application can be lodged.
Why is this being implemented?
The Government has advised that these measures are being implemented to strengthen the integrity of the program, to place greater emphasis on the assessment of persons as family sponsors and to improve the management of family violence in the delivery of the program.
Which visas will this effect?
- Prospective Marriage (subclass 300) Visa Applications (Offshore)
- Partner (subclasses 820 & 801) Visa Applications (Onshore)
- Partner (subclasses 309 & 100) Visa Applications (Offshore)
What is the criteria for Sponsorship approval?
The requirements and criteria for sponsorship approval will remain the same. These criteria require that sponsors:
- The immigration status of the sponsor
- The sponsor is not subject to sponsorship limitations
- The sponsor does not have an unresolved charge or conviction for a registrable offence
- The overall character of the sponsor which is verified by police clearances
Ethos Migration will continue to provide further information and guidance as it becomes available including when the Department introduces these new requirements.
We recommend that if you are considering lodging a Partner Visa in the near future that you do so as soon as possible to avoid the requirements of the new changes.