What Are the Requirements and Benefits of An Australian Fiancé Visa?
Meeting the person of your dreams and planning your marriage and future together is exciting for anyone, but if your partner lives in another country and you plan to emigrate to be with them, this is especially so. If you have your eyes set on migrating to Australia, you have the amazing outdoor living culture, sunny weather, a safe environment, and excellent job prospects and pay to look forward to. And as a place to raise a family, Australia is hard to beat with its outstanding education system and world-class universities. Before you can make your move to be with your fiancé, you will need to secure a visa to allow you to enter and remain legally, and thankfully, the prospective marriage visa (subclass 300) will allow you to do just this. In this article, we will outline the requirements and benefits of the Australian fiancé visa; also known as the prospective marriage visa.
What Is The Australian Prospective Marriage Visa (Subclass 300)?
The prospective marriage visa (subclass 300) provides temporary permission for holders to travel to Australia to marry their partner. It is important to note that you don’t necessarily have to get married in Australia, as you are free to travel in and out of the country. Your fiancé must be either an Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen. The visa is only valid for nine months, however, once married you will be able to apply for a partner visa, which after two years will allow you to secure permanent residency.
With a prospective marriage visa, you will be able to:
- stay in Australia for up to 9 months
- work in Australia
- study in Australia
- travel to and from Australia as many times as you want
You can also include family members in your ‘family unit’ on your application. The immigration rules clarify that an applicant's family unit includes:
- the main applicant's child, or their partner's child, who is not engaged, married or in a de facto relationship and is:
- aged under 18 years, or
- aged 18 to 23 years and dependent on the main applicant or the main applicant's partner, or
- aged 23 years or older and dependent on the main applicant or the main applicant's partner due to a partial or total physical or mental disability
- the dependent child of the child above
Am I Eligible For The Prospective Marriage Visa (Subclass 300)?
Whether you are eligible for the Australian prospective marriage visa (subclass 300) depends on the citizenship or immigration status of your Australia based partner, and your relationship to them. Under this visa route, your partner will effectively sponsor your application. To be eligible for the prospective marriage visa, all of the following must apply:
- You must both be over 18 years
- You must be engaged to an Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen
- You must both intend to get married within the nine months of being granted the prospective marriage visa, and then genuinely intend to live together as spouses
- You must both have met face-to-face as adults since turning 18 and know each other personally
- Meet the health and character requirements
To achieve a positive decision for this visa, the key is to provide as much information which proves your relationship and intentions are entirely genuine, and to provide this evidence up-front with your application. The Australian Department of Internal Affairs will always be looking for signs that your relationship and/or plans to get married within nine months are not genuine.
How Can I Prove That My Relationship And Plans To Get Married In Australia Are Genuine?
The Department of Internal Affairs will ask for evidence of your relationship, including:
- Two completed form 888s – ‘Statutory declaration by a supporting witness in relation to a Partner or Prospective Marriage visa application’. This provides proof from two witnesses that your relationship and intention to marry is genuine. This must be completed by two people who are 18 years old or older, know you and your spouse, and know about your relationship.
- proof that you and your prospective spouse have met face-to-face as adults since turning 18 and know each other personally
- proof (such as a letter from the person who will officiate at the wedding) that you will marry your prospective spouse within nine months of being granted the visa
- proof that you and your prospective spouse genuinely intend to live as spouses
- written statements showing the history of your relationship, such as:
- how, when and where you first met
- how your relationship developed
- when you became engaged
- joint activities
- significant events in the relationship
- your future plans as spouses
If you are unsure if the documents you have gathered are likely to be compelling enough to prove the genuineness of your relationship, it is recommended that you have them reviewed by an immigration lawyer before completing your application submission.
One of the concerns that prospective fiancé visa applicants have is the high cost of applying. As of the time of writing, a prospective partner visa costs AUD$7,715, however, it is important to note that when you then go on to apply for a full partner visa (subclasses 820 and 801), the fees will be much lower.
Ordinarily, the cost of a partner visa is also AUD$7,715, but as you will already have paid that amount when you applied for a fiancé visa, you will only need to pay AUD$1,285. There is no doubting that this is expensive, hence it is important that you submit the strongest possible application which provides you with the best chance of receiving a positive decision. We wish you all the very best with your new life in Australia.