How to get an Australian 309 subclass partner visa.

Roberto Efflandrin

In Australia, it’s possible to bring a spouse or de facto partner into the country on a 309 Provisional Partner visa while waiting for a 100 Migrant Partner visa to be approved.

In this article we’ll explore the process for obtaining a Subclass 309 visa and let you know how Wise can save you some money along the way.

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What is a 309 provisional partner visa

Formally called the Subclass 309 Partner (Provisional) visa, this visa allows the spouse or de facto of an eligible person to stay in Australia until the outcome of their Subclass 100 Partner (Migrant) visa application is decided or the application is withdrawn¹.

Main benefits provided by a 309 subclass visa

There are a few benefits of obtaining a 309 Provisional Partner visa.¹

  • You can live, work and study within Australia while the 100 Migrant Partner visa is being considered.
  • Dependent children can be included on the application.
  • You can enrol in Medicare.
  • You can travel to and from Australia anytime.

309 partner visa application fees

The cost for a Subclass 309/100 visa is $7850 AUD. This does not take into account any additional fees for organising the application or having other family members included on the application.¹


How to apply for a 309 partner visa

Applying for a visa can be quite daunting so here’s a breakdown of what you need to do if you’re the applicant.²

  1. Gather and digitise the required documents. Any documents which aren’t in English need to be translated. In Australia this must be done by someone accredited with the National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters. Overseas the translator just needs to write their full name, address, phone number, qualifications and experience on each page.

  2. If you want to legally appoint a registered migration agent, legal practitioner or exempt person to help you with your application you’ll need to fill in an appointment of a registered migration agent, legal practitioner or exempt person form.

  3. Keep in mind that you must apply for this visa from abroad. If you are in Australia it's a good idea to check with the Department of Home Affairs: Immigration and Citizenship to see if there are any concessions (e.g. due to Covid-19) or if the Subclass 820 visa is a better option for your situation.

  4. Complete your application, add supporting documents and pay the associated fees using your online ImmiAccount. Make sure you write down the Transaction Reference Number (TRN) and application ID as your partner will need it.

Once the partner applying for the visa has completed their application it’s time for the partner sponsoring the visa to do their part.²

  1. Gather and digitise the required documents.

  2. Apply and lodge your documents online though yours or your partners ImmiAccount. When you do this, select the option for “Sponsorship for a Partner to Migrate to Australia (300, 309/100, 820/801)” and make sure you have their TRN and application ID.

Eligibility requirements for a 309 partner visa

To be granted a provision partner visa you’ll need to make sure you meet these requirements.³

  • You're in a committed, genuine marriage or de facto partnership, usually for at least 12 months.
  • You’re living together, or can show you don’t live apart on a permanent basis.
  • Both people are 18 or older.

There are additional requirements that just apply to the applicant or sponsor.³

Requirements for the applicant

  • You and any family members on the application must meet the Australian government health requirements and character requirements.
  • Your entire family should be debt free to the Australian government.
  • If you’ve had a visa cancelled or application refused in Australia before it could be an issue.

Requirements for the sponsor

  • You must be an Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen.
  • You’ll need a police certificate.
  • It could be an issue if you have applied for or sponsored one of these visas before:
    • Subclass 309 Provisional Partner visa
    • Subclass 300 Prospective Marriage visa
    • Subclass 143 Contributory Parent visa
    • Subclass 864 Contributory Aged Parent visa
    • Subclass 204 Women At Rise visa

Documents needed for a 309 provisional partner visa

These are the documents which are generally needed to apply for the visa.²

Documents for visa application

  • Birth certificate
  • Passport photo page
  • National ID card
  • Proof of any name changes
  • Written statement about your relationship
  • Marriage certificate (if married)
  • Documents showing shared finances
  • Documents and/or a statement proving your shared household
  • Proof, statements and/or statutory declarations showing that people know about your relationship
  • Proof of your knowledge of one another and joint commitment to a long-term relationship.
  • Proof any former marriages have ended
  • Police certificates

Further documents are required for dependent children.

Documents for sponsor application

  • Proof that you're an Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen.
  • Proof you usually live in Australia (not needed for Australian citizens)
  • Police certificates

Time needed to get a 309 partner visa

Processing times vary immensely with 75% of applicants processed within 18 months and 90% within 27 months.⁴

Visa and immigration contact details

You can call the Department of Home Affairs: Immigration and Citizenship for more information.

  • 131 881 within Australia
  • +61 2 6196 0196 from overseas

FAQ about the 309 provisional partner visa

Can my children apply for this visa with me?

If they are a dependent child they can.¹

What are my obligations to be eligible to obtain this visa?

You need to make sure everyone on the application obeys Australian law and meets the visa requirements.¹

Can I travel out of and back into Australia with this visa?

The visa allows you to travel in and out of Australia as often as you want.¹ Before you travel it’s a good idea to double check if there are any general travel restrictions currently in force.

Is there anything I need to do while my application is processing?

Any updates for your application will be shared through your ImmiAccount.² While waiting, you may be asked for some biometrics, to go for a health exam or for some additional information. Home Affairs do state that you shouldn’t organise to travel to Australia until they’ve told you in writing that you’ve been granted the Subclass 309 visa.²

What happens if the relationship breaks down during the visa process?

You’ll need to notify the Australian Government and it’s still possible to be granted the Subclass 309 visa.³

Wrapping up.

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  1. Australian Department of Home Affairs Subclass 309 Partner (Provisional) Visa: About this visa
  2. Australian Department of Home Affairs Subclass 309 Partner (Provisional) Visa: Step by step
  3. Australian Department of Home Affairs Subclass 309 Partner (Provisional) Visa: Eligibility
  4. Australian Department of Home Affairs Subclass 309 Partner (Provisional) Visa: Overview
    Sources checked on: 3 December 2021

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