Partner Visa Refusals – Most Common Reasons

When applying for a Partner Visa, it is the first step of living with your Partner in Australia. However, one single mistake can put your future plans, hopes and dreams on pause.
For many, this will be the most important application in their lifetimes. This is why it is important to mitigate any and all risks before, during and after you lodge a Partner Visa Application.
The most common reasons for Partner Visa application refusals include the following:
Insufficient evidence provided
It is important to provide the documents that the Department of Home Affairs (DHA) asks for. Some Time of Application (TOA) documents include:
  • Identity documents for both the Applicant and the Sponsor.
  • Evidence of Marriage and/or Co-Habitation and/or Registered Relationship.
  • Separate statements from the Applicant and the Sponsor explaining the development, the financial aspects and the social aspects of the relationship, the nature of the household and the future plans/commitment to each other.
  • At least two Form 888’s by eligible friends or family members that have been witnessed. This is very important; as explained in the next point.
The DHA does not have to send a Request for More Information. They can make a decision at any point and if you have not uploaded all the Time of Application documents, the DHA may outright refuse your application.
No Form 888’s (Witness Declarations) were Uploaded
A Form 888, also known as a Witness Declaration, must be completed by an Australian Citizen or Australian Permanent Resident who is at least 18 years of age and personally knows the Sponsor, the Applicant, and the history of their relationship.
It would need be witnessed and the identity must be certified by a prescribed person.
If you skip this step on the online application (without providing details) and do not upload at least 2 valid forms to the application, the DHA may outright refuse your application.
If you lodge an onshore application and are unlawful or hold a Bridging Visa (in some cases), you must meet Schedule 3 of the Migration Regulations 1994. Depending on your circumstances, you may be able to get this waived, however, compelling reasons must exist and thoroughly explained to the DHA at Time of Application.
By not adequately addressing this requirement can result in a refusal. You should seek advice and be completely informed on the types of reasons that can be considered to meet Schedule 3 and it is important to have comprehensive and demonstrable evidence.
Provided a bogus document or false and misleading information
It is essential that you provide true documents and information to the DHA. If you fail to disclose important information, it is very likely that the DHA will find it. Common bogus documents and/or false and misleading information includes criminal history, past de facto relationships/marriages, important dates of the relationship, fake rental leases, and many more.
If you are not being 100% truthful and if the DHA finds out it may also affect all future visa applications you lodge.
Sponsor is not approved
The Sponsor must not have sponsored two other Applicants for a Partner Visa in the past, and/or not have sponsored in the past 5 years. The DHA will have all past records of the Sponsor and if this information isn’t disclosed, they will find out soon after the lodgement.
There are some exemptions that apply.  You should seek advice and be completely informed on the types of reasons that can be considered for an exemption.
Did not meet Eligibility Criteria
All 3 different Partner visas have different requirements that must be met at Time of Application. Ensuring that you meet all the requirements and lodging a decision-ready application is important.
The eligibility criteria might change depending on your circumstances, such as if the Applicant does not hold a substantive visa or if either party have a criminal record or if they have children from past relationships.
If you wish to book and appointment with one of our Registered Migration Agents, please call Gold Migration Lawyers on 1300 320 300 today.
This article does not constitute legal advice or create a Migration Agent-Client relationship. Please consult a Registered Migration Agent for up-to-date information.
Relevant Links
  • For more details on how to Register your Relationship in your home state, please click here.
  • For more details of Partner Visa Eligibility, please click here
  • For the current Visa Costs by the Department of Home Affairs, please click here