Subclass 155 (Resident Return Visa)(Case Study 2)

Australian Permanent Residence allows the visa holder to remain in Australia indefinitely, and to travel to Australia from overseas for up to five years from the date that the visa was granted.

If a permanent visa holder is overseas outside of the five year period, a Subclass 155 (Resident Return) Visa is required if they wish to return to Australia.

The Resident Return visa allows permanent residents of Australia to return to Australia after travelling overseas. Resident Return Visa applicants must be:

  • An Australian permanent resident, or
  • a former Australian permanent resident whose last permanent visa was not cancelled, or
  • a former Australian citizen who lost or renounced their citizenship.

Offshore applicants who have been outside Australia for more than five continuous years since their permanent resident visa was granted, must demonstrate compelling reasons for their absence.


Our client last departed Australia as the holder of a permanent visa in 2002. His status as an ‘Australian permanent resident’ ceased in 2005.

Our Role

We completed a comprehensive assessment and review of our client’s circumstances before determining that a Subclass 155 (Resident Return) visa was the most suitable option. The assessment process involved a Freedom of Information (FOI) request for the permanent visa applications (including prior RRV) lodged by our client to the Department of Immigration.

The FOI request allowed us to identify our client’s employment by various overseas corporations that were ‘controlled entities’ of Australian public companies at the time his initial permanent visa application was lodged.

Our client continued to be employed by various overseas corporations that were controlled by Australian public companies until the time his Subclass 155 (Resident Return) visa application was lodged. This was enough to convince the case officer that a reasonable person faced with identical circumstances would have made a similar decision to be absent from Australia.

In addition to the above, our client demonstrated substantial ties that were a benefit to Australia.


The case officer was satisfied that our client demonstrated substantial ties were a benefit to Australia, and that compelling reasons for his absence were present.

The subclass 155 (Resident Return) visa application for our client was approved. 

Other Case Studies

Subclass 155 (Resident Return) visa case study for an applicant who departed Australia as a permanent visa holder 27 years before her return as her re-entry as a temporary visa holder.