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REMOVAL OF RECENT MIGRANTS: DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AND EARLY SEPARATION
normally if spouse migrants separate within two years of entering Australia, they are not permitted to stay.
The Domestic Violence Provisions of Australia's migration program allow applicants for permanent residence to continue with their application after the breakdown of their relationship if they or other members of their family have experienced domestic violence by their spouse or de facto partner. These provisions were introduced because of concerns that some spouses might feel compelled to remain in abusive relationships rather than end the relationship and be forced to leave Australia.
What the Department Requires
The two types of evidence the Department of Immigration will accept are:-
One of the following:
Both of the following:
o set out the evidence on which they have based their opinion that domestic violence has occurred, and
o name the person alleged to have committed it.
A police record of assault can be provided as an alternate for one of the latter statutory declarations.
"Competent persons" are certain authorised professional people. They are, to list a few:
Various other agencies and professionals who are "competent persons" are on the Department of Immigration website.
Important issues to consider
It is important to remember that if your client wishes to remain in Australia and has suffered violence, it is not essential that they obtain an Intervention Order to support their application - there are other options as referred to above.
The Court process can be a distressing and stressful reliving of the trauma of domestic violence and can in some cases be avoided.
Renai Mitchell, Family Law Group
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