Resident Return Visa


The Resident Return visa is for current or former Australian permanent residents who want to travel overseas and return to Australia as permanent residents. This visa will let you keep or regain your status as an Australian permanent resident.


Do you need a Resident Return Visa?

If you are the holder of a permanent residency visa for Australia, you are permitted to remain in Australia indefinitely. However, your visa is only valid as a means of entry into the country for the first five years since your visa grant date.

If you would like to travel outside of Australia after, or towards the end of, the initial five year period, you will require an Resident Return Visa (RRV).

Any family members who will also be travelling outside of Australia will also require their own RRV and separate applications must be made for each person.

If you were formerly an Australian permanent resident and your visa has expired, you will require an RRV to re-enter Australia.

If you were formerly an Australian citizen and you either lost or renounced your citizenship, you will also require an RRV.


What type of Resident Return Visa do I need?

There are two classes of Resident Return Visa: The Subclass 155 RRV and the Subclass 157 RRV.

155 Resident Return Visa - This is the most common RRV. It allows you to leave and re-enter Australia anytime you want for five years.

157 Resident Return Visa - This is generally applicable to those who are ineligible for a 155 RRV. it also allows you to leave and re-enter Australia legally, but only for a period of three months.


5-Year Resident Return Visa (155)

The Subclass 155 visa:

  • is for former Australian permanent residents who wish to regain their permanent resident status;
  • is for current Australian permanent residents who wish to maintain their permanent resident status;
  • extends the travel validity facility of a permanent Australian visa; and
  • once granted, permits the holder to depart and re-enter Australia multiple times during the five-year validity of the visa.

Applicants for this visa can be either in Australia or overseas when the application is lodged. The method of application and place of lodgement will vary depending on circumstances.

You might be granted a subclass 155 visa if you either:

If you cannot meet the requirements for a Five Year Resident Return Visa, you might be eligible for a Three Month Resident Return Visa.      


3-Month Resident Return Visa (155)

You might be granted a subclass 157 visa if all of the following apply to you:

  • you lawfully spent at least one day but less than two years in the past five years in Australia immediately before you apply for this visa
  • you were an Australian permanent resident or an Australian citizen the whole time you were in Australia
  • there is a compelling and compassionate reason for leaving Australia.

If you are outside Australia when you apply, and you have been outside Australia for more than three continuous months immediately before you apply, you must have a compelling and compassionate reason for the absence. 


Processing Times

If you would like to apply for a Resident Return Visa, it is recommended you begin your application at least three months before you intend to travel. Applications are typically processed much quicker but we recommend allowing yourself enough time to account for any unforeseen difficulties in processing your application.


Getting Started 

The first step to start you visa application with FastVisa is to contact us or directly book a consultation on our website. One of our immigration lawyers will review your individual circumstances, guide you through the visa options available and clarify all your doubts. 


Our Visa consultations

  • Can be done on Skype, phone or face-to-face
  • The cost will be fully discounted from the visa application professional fees if you engage our visa services
  • Will put you on the right track to get your visa approved

The information provided here should be used as a guide only. It is not intended to be comprehensive nor does it constitute legal or other professional advice. We attempt to ensure that the content is current but we do not guarantee its currency. You should seek legal or other professional advice before acting or relying on any of the content.

If you believe that a particular visa is appropriate for your circumstances, contact us for a complete and thorough assessment of your situation and visa eligibility. 


*Source: Australian Department of Home Affairs

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