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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi people Me and My fiancee have lodged a chronological step by step application with the Tokyo visa office subclass 300 around the end of Jan 2011. But due to the earthquakes and looming nuclear threats we have decided for her to come to Australia on an ETA visa, we planned on getting married in June in Brisbane but are thinking of doing it earlier as we feel it is safer here! Are we better off waiting for our fiance visa to be approved and doing a trip to NZ or get married and change our application to partner visa? Its a worry because we dont know if staff in the Tokyo office have been reduced affecting processing times etc! Any suggestions or anyone in the same position? Is there any special consideration happening for people in this situation or does these type of disasters not affect processing times and conditions? Comments advice appreciated!
 

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Latest news on radioactive water leaking and sea water levels is not so welcome I imagine - Workers evacuated as radiation soars at reactor
Hope all is well and yes, not a bad idea to get further away if you can.

The government has announced that consideration will be given to people holding visas - see note on Department of Immigration & Citizenship and I imagine they will be compassionate about any situations where the regulations allow it.
I have seen no announcement just yet on whether the Australian government is planning on calling back consular staff but that could happen, or at least for families of staff and may be extended if the radiation leakage gets worse than has ben reported.

Many people do make PMV or partner applications and then want to visit Australia while a visa is being processed and that is generally accepted, it also being necessary to travel abroad to have an offshore visa granted, a trip to NZ being an option.

In your situation an earlier marriage could see the PMV be considered as a partner visa but I would think it would be considered as an Offshore application but if you were in Australia and got married, perhaps they could take a compassionate view and make it an onshore partner application.
Details @ Prospective Marriage Visa (Subclass 300)

You may also want to consider your fiance applying for a six month tourist visa to allow plenty of time for the processing as with an ETA, they are good for only three months at a time and that may end up meaning your fiance would need to take an extra trip whilst processing ocurred as anywhere out around six months, give or take a couple could be a possibility and especially so if staffing in Japan is dissrupted.
 

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So if we decided to marry earlier before our PMV is approved then it will be an offshore approval hence we will have to be offshore to obtain that. So I guess that would mean no bridging visa in the mean time whilst waiting for the partner visa to be approved and still no eligibility for her to be able to obtain employment here. MMMM and I guess the processing times would be similar or the same as well... maybe longer due to changing our visa application?
 

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Yes, Robert, I expect the PMV would transfer to the offshore, a bridging visa not applying and under normal circumstances it does seem for now that offshore visas are being processed quicker than onshore, that a factor I suspect of Australian Immi resources being allocated more and more to the people smuggling/asylum seeker issues.
I suppose with staff being moved from Tokyo to Osaka and the partner visa a paper application, there is every chance for processing times to become more uncertain with that situation for I would have no idea just how much paperwork in total they would have had to be bundled up and then there would I suspect have been priorities applied too.

If I was you, I would see if you or your fiance can get some in person advice from first what Tokyo people are still there and then if need be from Osaka and you should advise them in any case of planning to head to Australia.
You may be able to get some idea of just where the application is location wise and also on a time schedule.
You may even be able to get some direction re whether your marriage could see a partner onshore application possible and though I doubt that you would get a definitive decision on that, by asking about the government's compassionate approach for visa holders you may be able to get advice on who needs to be asked or the Tokyo/Osaka people may be prepared to seek further Australian Immi advice themselves.

Unfortunately, these kind of things can be a bureucratic nightmare at the best and especially because immigration regulations are set by legislation though sometimes if there is a gap of light, there may be a way through.

Good luck with it and do let us know how you fare.
 
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