Australia Immigration NEWS!

Australian marriage visa fees increases w.e.f. , January 1, 2013

The Acting Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, Senator Kate Lundy, has just announced some changes to the visa pricing system for anyone wishing to enter the country under the partnership policy sponsored by an Australian Citizen or legal permanent resident.

The partner visa application fee increase will take effect from 1 January 2013. Under the proposed changes, the partner visa fees will increase from $2,060 to around $2,700 for fiancée (prospective marriage), de facto partner and spousal visa applications lodged offshore, while the cost of onshore applications will increase from $3,060 to around $4,000. Ms Lundy emphasised that she does not expect demand to change for family migration visas, despite fee increase.

These changes were announced as part of the government's usual mid-year review and they are part of the general move to make the charges and method of payment for visas fairer. Senator Lundy said, 'The government has made a targeted increase in the cost of visas where there are high levels of demand, and therefore areas that are less likely to be significantly impacted by the added costs. The fact is that there are plenty of people around the world who want to work in Australia because of our substantial economic strengths during these times of global economic uncertainty – it is only appropriate for visa costs to reflect that demand.'

If you an Australian Citizen or legal permanent resident wishing to bring your foreign partner to Australia on a prospective marriage visa (subclass 300), unmarried partner or spousal visa (subclass 309), or if your loved is currently in Australia on a visa that allows them to convert their current visa into the partner or spousal visa category onshore (subclass 820), you may want to consider submitting your application to the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) in the coming weeks to avoid a higher processing fee.

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