You might be granted a subclass 155 visa if you either:
meet the resident requirement (5 year travel facility)
have ties of benefit to Australia (1 year travel facility)
are a family member of someone who holds, or has applied for, a Resident Return visa and satisfies the criteria for grant (up to 1 year travel facility).
Meet the resident requirement
You meet the residence requirement if you spent a total of at least two of the last five years in Australia as an Australian permanent resident or citizen.
Have ties of benefit to Australia
If you do not meet the residence requirement, you might be eligible for the subclass 155 visa if you have substantial business, cultural, employment or personal ties of benefit to Australia:
Business ties of benefit: You have substantial ownership in a business and personal involvement at a senior level in the day-to-day operations and management of a business. The business activity must be ongoing, commercial in nature and have a record keeping and management system that supports the business activity.
Cultural ties of benefit: You undertake intellectual, artistic, sporting or religious pursuits that are adding to Australia’s cultural life.
Employment ties of benefit: You are currently employed or have a formal employment offer in Australia, or are employed outside Australia by an Australian organisation, or are employed by a non-Australian organisation that clearly benefits Australia, for example, you work as a representative of Australia for an international organisation.
Personal ties of benefit: You are, or have been, a participating member of the Australian community and economy. We also take into account living in Australia for a substantial period of time or living overseas with an Australian citizen partner, and having personal assets or close family members who live in Australia that are both substantial and of benefit to Australia.
If you have been absent from Australia
You will also need to provide information about absences if you are:
applying in Australia but were absent from Australia continuously for more than five years
applying from outside Australia and were a permanent resident or citizen when you last departed Australia and you were absent from Australia continuously for more than five years
applying from outside Australia and were a permanent resident or citizen in the last 10 years and you were absent from Australia for periods that total over five years.
A family member holds, or has applied for, a Resident Return visa
If you do not meet the residence requirement, you might be eligible for the subclass 155 visa if you are a member of the family unit of a person who holds a subclass 155 or 157 visa or has applied for a Resident Return visa and satisfies the criteria for grant.
To be a member of the family unit of another person you can be:
his or her partner
his or her dependent child
his or her partner’s dependent child.
How long the visas last
The subclass 155 and 157 visas are permanent visas, however, this does not mean that the visa always lasts indefinitely.
If you do not travel outside Australia the visa lasts indefinitely (it does not end) and you will not become unlawful when the travel facility ends
If you do travel outside Australia after the travel facility on the visa ends, the visa will end when you leave Australia. So it is best to apply for another Resident Return visa before you leave Australia. You can also apply from overseas.
If you are in Australia and the travel facility on your current visa has, or is, about to expire, you need to apply for, an RRV before you leave Australia. You may depart Australia without your resident return visa application being finalised however please ensure you have a re-entry visa to return to Australia.
You can apply for the visa outside Australia, but it must be granted before you enter Australia.
If you apply on paper, you need to pay an additional $80.