The Migration Amendment (Family Violence Provisions for Partner Visa Applicants) Regulations 2024 introduces significant changes to Partner and Prospective Partner visa categories, effective from 1 July 2024.

Existing or Intended Partners

For Prospective Marriage (Sc 309) and Partner (Sc 100) visas, applicants no longer need to be sponsored at the time of decision if the relationship ends due to the death of the sponsor, having a child together, or experiencing family violence. Applicants can now access provisions for the death of a sponsor or having a child without needing to have entered Australia since lodging their application. The family violence provision now only requires that applicants have entered Australia after lodging their visa application.

Prospective Partners

For Prospective Marriage (Sc 300) visa holders, these updates are substantial. Holders and certain former holders can now apply for a Partner (Sc 820/801) visa under the relationship cessation provisions without needing to marry their former sponsor. Family violence provisions now include Sc 300 visa holders and certain former holders who did not marry their sponsor. Eligible Sc 300 visa holders can also apply for a Partner (Sc 820/801) visa under the child of relationship provision. The Sc 300 visa can now be granted inside Australia, though applications must still be made offshore. Review rights for Sc 300 applicants are maintained for refusals made before, on, or after 1 July 2024. The requirement for Partner (Sc 820/801) applicants to demonstrate ‘close business, cultural, or personal ties’ to Australia if their sponsor has died has been removed.

Updated Family Violence Language

References to family violence in the Migration Regulations now use the term “experienced” instead of “suffered,” promoting a more empathetic description of the experiences of individuals affected by family violence.

These amendments will apply to visa applications lodged but not finally determined before 1 July 2024, as well as to all applications lodged on or after 1 July 2024.

Stay updated on these important changes and how they might impact your visa application. For more detailed information and personalised assistance, contact us directly at [email protected].