We at Down Under Visa, quite naturally, have dealt with a few engaged couples over the years who want to bring their fiancee from Philippines to Australia. Most of the time our Australian Filipina couples contact us when they’re not married yet. They either intend marrying soon and applying for partner visas (spouse visas) or they intend marrying later in Australia in a less-rushed manner and applying for prospective marriage visas (aka fiancée visas or fiancé visas). This remains and will continue to remain a great option.
The question comes up though quite often when clients are completing our e-Assess Questionnaire, and that is the date of their engagement.
But I’m not engaged, am I?
The application forms for an Australian partner visa ask for the date of engagement or date of commitment.
If you intend to marry each other, yes you are engaged! If you are not engaged, then why would you be asking me for a visa so you can get married and remain together?
Are you committed to each other?
This is the very basis of any partner visa application. You apply for a partner visa (or fiancée visa or fiance visa) when you are absolutely committed to each other. You intend to marry and you intend to share your life with this person and remain together. You will live together, love each other, make families and grow old together. If you contact me because this is what you want with this Filipina girl you fell in love with and she wants the same thing with you, then yes you are engaged!
But to make it abundantly clear, if you still have doubts or if you are still holding back, then a fiancée visa or partner visa is the wrong choice for you. Fiancée and partner visas are for the committed. They are for the engaged or already married. If you are still just enjoying each other’s company, but are not ready to commit yourself and the rest of your life to this Filipina lady, then no you are not engaged or committed and you are not ready for a partner visa at all.
Be aware that the visa application itself is assessed on your level of commitment to each other. It isn’t a try-before-you-buy visa, so you can see if in a few years of being together you want it to continue. You need to make that decision beforehand and not after, and if they can’t see evidence of you being engaged or committed to your fiancée then they will not grant the visa.
And note also that you may only sponsor someone limited times.
What does Reg 1.20J “Five Year Rule” mean to you?
In the Migration Regulations, Reg 1.20J says that if you sponsor someone for a partner visa and that visa is granted, you may only sponsor again when five years has passed since you last lodged a sponsorship application (which you do when you lodge a fiancée visa or partner visa application). And what’s more, you may only do this twice in a lifetime.
It means that you need to be 100% sure that this Filipina lady is the right lady for you, and you need to make this decision before you contact Down Under Visa saying you want a fiancée visa for her. Because once that visa is granted, you can’t apply for another one for five years.
But you know something? I knew all of this when I applied for a prospective marriage visa for Mila when she was still MY fiancée, and It didn’t worry me one little bit. I was engaged and I was committed, and I wasn’t contemplating any “What if?” scenarios. That’s what being truly engaged and truly committed is all about.