De Facto Relationships

A person is in a de facto relationship with another person if:

  • They are not legally married
  • They are not related by family
  • They have a relationship as a couple living together on a genuine domestic basis
  • Have a mutual commitment to a shared life to the exclusion of all others
  • The relationship is genuine and continuing.
  • Both parties are over 18 years old.

For migration purposes, a de facto relationship must have existed for 12 months.

The Department of Immigration and Border Protection will consider the circumstances of the relationship to determine if they are, in fact, in a de facto relationship. These circumstances may include:

  • The duration of the relationship
  • How long the couple has been living together
  • Whether there is a sexual relationship
  • The financial arrangements and dependence
  • Shared ownership of property
  • Mutual commitment to a shared life
  • Whether the relationship has been legally registered
  • The care and support of children

De facto relationships can be between two people of the same sex or two people of different sexes. For information of visas available to people in de facto relationships, please see information on Partner visas (offshore and onshore).