The Subclass 820 Partner Visa is specifically for onshore Australian visa applicants who have an Australian partner or a partner who is an Australian permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen. In today’s blog, we explain what the 820 visa involves, and four benefits of the visa that you may not be aware of.
What is the 820 visa?
The 820 visa is granted to the spouse or de facto partner of an Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident, or eligible New Zealand citizen and allows the partner to live and work in Australia. The 820 visa is a provisional visa that is granted to the applicant and it precedes the Permanent Partner, Subclass 801 Visa. The Subclass 801 visa is processed two years after the application for the first stage visa. According to the Department of Home Affairs (DOHA), most people hold an 820 visa for between 18-25 months while before being granted their permanent 801.
In order to be eligible for the temporary partner visa, you must meet the following criteria at the time you apply for the visa:
- You must be married to, or in a de facto relationship with, an Australian citizen, eligible New Zealand citizen, or an Australian permanent resident. This person will be your visa sponsor (unless they are under 18).
- Your marriage must be valid under Australian law.
- You must be able to prove that you have been in a de facto relationship for a minimum of 12 months unless you are exempt from this requirement because you have registered your relationship (for example).
4 benefits of the 820 visa
#1: You have lots of flexibility
There is a lot of freedom attached to the 820 visa. Not only can you use it to stay in Australia until a decision is made on your permanent 801 visa, but you also have:
- Full working rights.
- Full flexibility to travel in and out of Australia.
- The ability to study in Australia (but please note that you are not eligible for financial support from the Government if you do choose to study).
#2: You gain access to Medicare
As soon as you apply for the Subclass 820 visa, you have access to Medicare. Medicare gives you access to Australian health care services, including:
- Free (or subsidised) treatments and consultations from doctors, dentists, optometrists and a number of other practitioners
- Free treatment and accommodation as a Medicare (public) patient in a public hospital.
- PBS Medications.
#3 Another resource you may be interested in is the Adult Migration English Program (AMEP).
Once granted the 820 visa, you will be granted access to up to 510 hours of free English language tuition. These classes are provided across Australia’s cities and even rural or regional areas. There are many options for study, including:
- The choice of full-time or part-time study
- Weekend and night classes
- Home tutor schemes
- Online independent learning
- Distance learning (regular over-the-phone contact or classes via the Internet).
#4: You can include dependent children in your application if they are in Australia.
This is a fantastic benefit of the 820 visa and makes the process of permanently moving your family to Australia a much easier one. Provided your children meet the eligibility criteria, they will have the same rights and visa conditions as you have.
Dependent children or stepchildren must be under the age of 18, or if over 18 and under 23;
- Be financially dependent on you or your partner because they are a full-time student; or if over 23,
- Unable to work, due to mental or physical disabilities.
- Not married, engaged to be married, or in a de facto relationship.
What happens to my visa if my partner and I split up after the application has been lodged?
While we have covered this topic in more detail in another post, it is likely you do have options. It is important however that you seek out an experienced Registered Migration Agent to guide you, as there may be circumstances where you are still entitled to a partner visa, or you may be eligible for a different visa. You should seek out someone quickly before the DOHA threatens you with visa cancellation or refusal of your temporary or permanent partner visa.
If you have any questions regarding your partner visa, please contact us or book a consultation with one of our experienced migration professionals and we can help you with your application!