Expat Life

The road to residency part 7: more waiting

Sometime in May or June, I became eligible to apply for permanent residency.

If you’re just joining me at this part of my story, I came to Australia to be with my partner. I applied for a de facto partner visa subclass 820. It grants temporary residency. It lets me travel, get Medicare, study, and work. Although it doesn’t have an expiration date, it is temporary. Two years from the date I applied for temporary residency, I can apply to become a permanent resident.

My migrant agent contacted me and emailed me all the forms I’d need to lodge:

  • the visa application
  • details of any international travel
  • details of any formal study undertaken
  • employment details
  • evidence that my relationship is ongoing and genuine (e.g. photos, bills, invitations)
  • statutory declaration from my partner and I
  • statutory declarations from two witnesses in support of our relationship
  • colour scans of updated passports
  • a police check

These document were required previously when I first applied. It’s easier this time. The documentation is around what we’ve been up to for the last two years. Although I procrastinated, it was easy to pull together.

How long does it take? A long time. I applied for the temporary residency visa in April 2014. So, two years is April 2016. And then it’s 12-18 more months for processing the application. I should receive permanent residency between April and October 2017.



  • The permanent processing stage was much much quicker for me – I think around two months.

    • Cosette Paneque

      That’s great news! I’ve heard it can be quick so I’m crossing my fingers.

  • Ivan Jordon

    Wow. That’s a long wait. Wishing lots of luck your way.

  • Vicky

    When did you actually apply for your perm residency and did you apply onshore or offshore? I became eligible in July and applied the same day as my two year anniversary and I keep reading it’s about 3-6 months so I was hoping December or January at the latest but 12-18 months is a bit depressing!!

    • Cosette Paneque

      Hi Vicky. I’ve done everything onshore. I applied for my first visa in April 2014. So, two years is April 2016. It doesn’t matter that I lodged the second round of paperwork in late August. It’s 12-18 more months from April 2016. So, I should get it sometime between April and October 2017. I’ve heard of some people getting it sooner (nobody I know personally) so I’m crossing my fingers.