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155 (Resident Return) visa

Once you get a permanent visa, it is initially valid for 5 years. This expiry date is essentially a tourist opportunity. If you stay in Australia for more than 5 years, your permanent residence will not expire and will only affect your ability to leave Australia and re-enter as a permanent resident.

You can get a Subclass 155 visa if you:

  • meet the permanent residency requirement (5-year tourist base)
  • have an interest link with Australia (one year travel facility)
  • be a family member of someone who is holding or has applied for a return permanent resident visa and meets the criteria for grant (ability to travel for up to 1 year).

You are eligible for residency if you have spent at least two of the last five years in Australia as an Australian permanent resident or citizen.

If you do not meet the residency requirements, you may be eligible for a Subclass 155 visa if you are part of the family unit of a Subclass 155 or 157 visa holder or have applied for return resident visa and meet the criteria for issuance.

To become a member of someone else’s family unit, you can be:

  • that person’s spouse
  • her dependent child
  • dependent children of his/her spouse.

Subclass 155 and 157 are permanent visas, however, this does not mean that the visas always last indefinitely.

  • If you are not traveling outside of Australia, the visa lasts indefinitely (it does not end) and you will not become illegal when the tourist base ends

If you travel outside of Australia after the visa travel facility has ended, your visa will end when you leave Australia. Therefore, it is better to apply for another return resident visa before leaving Australia. You can also apply from abroad.

If you are in Australia and your current travel facility has expired or is about to expire, you must apply for an RRV before you leave Australia. You can leave Australia without completing your permanent resident return visa application, but make sure you have a return visa to return to Australia.

You can apply for a visa outside of Australia, but it must be granted before entering Australia.

If you do not meet the residency requirements, you may be eligible for a Subclass 155 visa if you have significant business, cultural, professional or personal ties to Australia:

Beneficial business association: You own a substantial stake in a business and you personally participate at a higher level in the day-to-day operations and management of a business. The business must be continuous, of a business nature, and have a management and record-keeping system in place to support the business.

 

Beneficial cultural connections: You undertake intellectual, artistic, sporting or religious activities to add to Australia’s cultural life.

Link to employment benefits: you are currently employed or have an official job offer in Australia, or are employed by an Australian organization outside Australia, or are employed by a non-Australian organization of interest obvious interests in Australia, for example you work as an Australian representing an international organisation.

Personal Interest Relationship: You have been or are a participating member of the Australian community and economy. We also take into account whether you are living in Australia for an extended period or are living overseas with a partner who is an Australian citizen and has personal property or close family members living in Australia who have recently significant and beneficial to Australia.

if away from Australia

Absence information must also be provided in the following cases:

  • Applied to Australia but has been absent from Australia for at least 5 consecutive years
  • You applied from outside Australia and were a permanent resident or citizen at the time of your last departure from Australia and have been permanently absent from Australia for at least 5 years
  • You applied from outside Australia and have been a permanent resident or citizen in the last 10 years and have not been in Australia for a total of 5 years or more.