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Australian Government Changes to Partner Visas coming in November 2021

Australian Government Changes to Partner Visas coming in November 2021

October 2021

As part of the 2020-21 Federal Budget, the Australian Government announced that it will implement reforms to strengthen the integration outcomes of the Partner visa program by the end of 2021.

These reforms are expected to be implemented in November 2021.

The reforms include:

  • Changing the way that sponsorship applications are lodged, as well as the way that Partner visa applications are processed.

Currently, sponsorship and Partner visa applications are lodged at the same time.

However as part of the Partner visa reforms, the Department of Home Affairs will be introducing a new sponsorship framework, requiring sponsors to be approved before their partners can apply for the Partner visa.

The new framework will also impose obligations on sponsors and provide civil penalties and administrative sanctions for breach of obligations.

  • Introducing an English language requirement for permanent resident sponsors and Partner visa applicants.

While the Partner visa program does not currently have any English language requirements, the upcoming Partner visa reforms will require applicants and their permanent resident sponsors (i.e., not Australian citizens) to provide evidence of a functional level of English, or to demonstrate that they have made reasonable efforts to learn English at the time of the second stage of processing of the Partner visa – i.e., before the grant of the permanent Partner visa.

Reasonable efforts are intended to include completion of 500 hours of free English language classes through the Adult Migrant English Program (AMEP).

The requirements will apply to passport holders from countries other than Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

To read more information about Partner visas, please visit this page

View Link: Partner Visas in Australia

To speak with an experienced, specialist immigration lawyer regarding your Australian visa application or options, please contact us on +61 3 9329 8744 or by email at

Phone Erskine Rodan & Associates
+61 3 9329 8744
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