Overview

A Resident Return visa (RRV) (Subclass 155 and Subclass 157) is a travel permission that allows long term Australian permanent residents to leave and return to Australia while retaining permanent residence status. You need to be a permanent resident to apply for this visa.

While a permanent visa is permanent, the first permanent visa is granted with a five-year travel facility. This allows you to travel to and from Australia without any restriction in the first five years of the visa grant. If you are in Australia and need to travel outside this five year period, or find yourself outside Australia at this time, you need to apply for a Resident Return visa.

You do not need to apply for an RRV if you are within the five year period, do not wish to travel, or are an Australian citizen. You can apply for Australian Citizenship after living in Australia for four years including twelve months as a permanent resident.

You can apply for an RRV from inside or outside Australia but we strongly recommend you apply for the RRV before you travel.

Resident Return visa (RRV)

You may be granted a Subclass 155 or Subclass 157 RRV depending on your circumstances. The period of the new travel facility will also vary depending on your circumstances:

  • If you have lived in Australia for 2 years of the last 5 years you will be granted an RRV for 5 years;
  • If you have not lived in Australia for 2 years in the last 5 years but can demonstrate substantial ties of benefit Australia you will be granted an RRV with 12 months travel validity;
  • If you had compelling and compassionate reasons for departing Australia, you will be given a 3 months travel validity;
  • If you meet the requirements because you are a member of family unit of a person who holds an RRV, you will be given the same time period as your partner.

To apply for a Resident Return visa (RRV) you need to meet one of the following requirements:

    • You lived in Australia for 2 years in the last 5 years as the holder of a permanent visa; or
    • You are outside Australia, and have substantial business, cultural, employment or personal ties with Australia which are of benefit to Australia, and you have not been absent from Australia for a continuous period of 5 years or more immediately before the application for the visa, unless there are compelling reasons for the absence; or
    • You were an Australian permanent resident less than 10 years before the application, and have not been absent from Australia for more than 5 years from the date that you last departed Australia unless there are compelling reasons for the absence; or
    • You were lawfully present in Australia for a period of, or periods that total, not less than 1 day but less than 2 years in the period of 5 years immediately before the application for the visa and have compelling and compassionate reasons for departing Australia or if outside Australia, had compelling and compassionate reasons for your last departure from Australia; or
    • You are a member of the family unit of a person who has been granted an RRV that is still in effect.

If one of these criteria apply to you, we invite you to book a consultation with one of our expert migration lawyers.

Processing times vary:

Subclass 155

  • 75% of applications: 83 days
  • 90% of applications: 3 months

Subclass 157

  • 75% of applications: 4 months
  • 90% of applications: 4 months

The application fee payable to the Australian Government are:

  • AUD$405 for each applicant if you apply online;
  • AUD$485 for each applicant if you apply on paper – unless you are exempt from paying the non-internet application charge.

To work out how much your visa might cost use the Visa pricing estimator.

The estimator does not consider other costs you might have such as police certificates, health checks, biometrics and professional fees from an immigration lawyer/agent.

For more information visit: https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au

To discover whether you are eligible for a Resident Return Visa (RRV) visa, we invite you to book a consultation with one of our expert migration lawyers.

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