Originally Posted by Skybluebrewer
Yes and no.
It won't affect when your application will finally get looked at. You're waiting in the same queue as everyone else. Some people get lucky and their apps get pushed through quickly, but that has nothing to do with how long they've been together and seems to me more like pure luck to get drawn early. I've seen people that have only been together for a year or less get fast grants while couples married for years wait over a year, and vice versa.
But, if you provided strong evidence for the duration of your relationship, then you should be eligible to skip the 2 year waiting period between the 820/801 application and 801 eligibility. BUT, you still need to wait for the application to be assessed. All this means is that when they do go to assess your relationship for the 820 visa, if the CO decides to, they can grant you the 801 at the same time. This doesn't always happen though so best to give strong evidence of your entire relationship to give yourself the best chance.
But again, that has nothing to do with how long you'll wait to be assessed initially. Some people only wait a few months (rare), others wait about 1-1.5 years (more common) and some even wait 2+ years (less common).
Would you be able to confirm if being in a relationship for 3 years can include dating before you became defacto? For example, my partner and I started dating in Aug 2015 but became defacto May 2017 (having lived together from May 2016-2017).