If you have migrated to Australia on a partner visa, you still have rights. A sponsoring partner has no power to cancel your visa or have you deported - even if they threaten to do so. Only the government agency responsible for immigration can do this (the Department of Home Affairs). If you are experiencing domestic and family violence from a sponsoring partner, there are provisions in the law to allow you to apply to stay in your own right.

If you are in Australia on a temporary visa and your partner or family members are treating you badly, there are organisations that can help. However, many organisations will not be able to support you because of your visa status.

Your visa status will determine whether you can access income support from the government or free health care - among other things.

When a partner or a family member is treating you badly, they may use your visa status to coerce and threaten you. This is not acceptable. If you do contact an organisation for help, tell them your visa status at the start of the conversation to check if they can work with you.

If you leave an abusive partner who is a sponsoring partner, you are required to notify the Department of Home Affairs that the relationship status has changed; this can be done online using an ImmiAccount.

There are free interpreter services should you require them when you contact the Department. Let them know that you are experiencing domestic violence and if you are concerned about your visa so they can assist you with resolving your visa status.

You will be given instructions on how to apply for your and your children’s visa using your ImmiAccount. To protect your safety and privacy, the application will be removed from your immigration account. It is important to provide your most up-to-date contact details, so they can communicate any information about your visa. If need be, create a separate email address and password to which only you have access.

If you are on a temporary visa and experiencing financial hardship because of domestic violence, you may be able to access financial support from the Red Cross.

Find a Community Legal Centre near you. Find out how to use the service or book an interpreter.