Following a law that was passed by the Federal government in 2012 family violence provisions were inserted to allow for foreign-born partners of Australian residents to stay in Australia following the breakdown of the relationship due to family violence. As per the provisions, family violence can occur to the visa applicant themselves, a dependant child of that applicant and/ or of that applicant’s ex-partner as long as the family violence was committed by the visa applicant’s ex-partner.
This means that the applicant can apply for permanent residency if they can provide evidence that they or members of their family unit have been victims of family violence committed by their Australian partner.
What evidence of family violence must be obtained to satisfy the legislative requirements?
For the purposes of assessing visa applications under the family violence provisions, the applicant will need to demonstrate either non-judicially determined claims of family violence or judicially determined claims.
It is important for people to understand that this means that family violence visas can be granted on grounds of domestic violence convictions, injunctions or court orders or alternatively there are other types of non-legal documents that can be relied upon. These include documents from doctors, schools, hospitals, police, crisis centres or social workers who have treated the victim.
This flexible evidentiary burden acknowledged the widespread stigmatisation of family violence particularly for migrant women. The 2016 Victoria Royal Commission into Family Violence found that women of diverse migrant backgrounds are at a greater risk of family violence due to a range of compounding factors.
These factors include, social isolation, fear of deportation and language barriers. The Commission specifically identified the fact that a significant proportion of these victims refrain from disclosing, seeking support or leaving a relationship when on a visa, out of fear they will be immediately deported.
How can Ethos Migration assist people experiencing family violence?
If you are a migrant woman experiencing family violence, please get in touch with our experienced staff at Ethos Migration.
At Ethos Migration we will provide a confidential assessment of the pathways available to you for permanent residency, we also have knowledgeable and compassionate female staff members available for consultations.