Making rash decisions when choosing a Filipina wife!

Wise men say “only fools rush in”!

Thus spake that wise philosopher Elvis Presley (*cough*)


Actually, I will happily confess that when I proposed marriage to my wonderful Filipina wife Mila, I spoke Mr Presley’s words to her. And note that this was over the phone, and at this stage we hadn’t even met in person. Careless of me? In this case, no definitely not. We met via writing letters, and I knew after about the second letter that she was the right one for me. And everything that happened after that only confirmed that.

However, a few years earlier I had made a stupid decision and married someone in Cebu that I never should have met let alone married. I wasted a year of my life, and an estimated $20,000.00, faced a visa application refusal, and had to organise a divorce. A tough lesson, but one fortunately I survived.

Was that one a wise decision? Definitely not. I was lonely. I was charmed by a far-away place and a fresh and pretty young thing who caused my hormones to take over my brain. A really dumb decision. Fortunately the experience helped me to know and recognise quality when I found it a few years later. The Philippines is full of wonderful women who can become your best friend and a great partner in life, just like Mila is to me. However there are plenty of gold diggers who will make mincemeat out of gullible and hormone-engulfed men. And this can have long-term repercussions that can affect you for many years.


Regulation 1.20J of the Migration Regulations (Cth) 1994

This is the anti “serial sponsorship” Regulation, and it applies to Australian Partner Visa applications.

Once upon a time it was much simpler to apply for a spouse visa. You rocked up to the Embassy, stood in a line, produced a completed application form and a few photos, letters and receipts, and the application could be granted within a month or two. She would go to Australia as an instant Permanent Resident with a spouse visa or fiancée visa. If the relationship then broke down, he could come back to the Philippines and start all over again.

That person was known as the “serial sponsor”.

How common was this then? No idea. How common today? I can say I’ve never met a potential “serial sponsor” in all our years of practice in the Down Under Visa office. If there was? He would be facing:

  • Around 6 months to develop a relationship
  • Maybe 2 – 3 months to prepare a proper application
  • Maybe 9 months for a visa grant

So that’s 18 months before the lady arrives in Australia. That time invested, plus many thousands of dollars in Visa Application Charges (and high-quality services from Down Under Visa, of course). A “serial sponsor” would have to have a lot of time on his hands and very deep pockets!

Rightly or wrongly, that’s the law. And whilst we may apply for waivers of this Regulation where compelling and compassionate circumstances exist, You don’t want to get stung by this.


What is the five year rule?

You may sponsor no more than TWO applicants for partner visas or fiancée visas (prospective marriage visas) in your lifetime, and if you are on your second sponsorship this must be more than five years since you lodged the first visa application!

This will apply if the visa is GRANTED. It has nothing to do with whether you get married, or whether she even comes to Australia. If it’s granted today and you break up tomorrow, you have a five year wait before you may apply again!


So what’s my point?

Think carefully! Don’t be a fool rushing in! Act in haste, regret at leisure!

If she’s “the one”, and you know this with a clear head, then make your decision and we will help put together an excellent visa application for you both.

But if you are acting out of loneliness and desperation, or because you are dazzled by her pretty face, or if you went to visit her and didn’t want to “leave empty handed”, or if you are hanging on despite problems because you’re don’t want to be embarrassed about your silly mates saying “I told you so”, then understand that you could face five years of loneliness if it all goes wrong!


And if you have met that wonderful Filipina lady and would like help from a Registered Migration Agent in Philippines who specialises in partner visas, please go to the Down Under Visa WEBSITE


Filed under Australian Visa Applications, Fiance Visas, Partner Visas - Offshore, Partner Visas - Onshore, Relationship Issues

9 responses to “Making rash decisions when choosing a Filipina wife!

  1. john reynolds

    i met a 24 year old guy in angeles who was in love after 6 days of–shall we say lust filled nights.He lived in brisbane with his parents and was off to the province to marry the woman of his dreams. As i was married to a pinoy he asked me ‘where do i pick up her visa” My reply was to point out the basic procedure –only to be interupted with the reply “i have money for her air ticket,buying for her next week”.As i continued to point out various problems he interupted me with “what the hell do you know!!” Oh the stupidity of youth!!!!

    • Hello John. “Where do I pick up her visa?” Dear oh dear!

      Actually whilst I’m closer to “old” than “young” these days (despite my youthful and handsome looks), we actually find some of the older chaps having the poorer judgement. Older men cope very badly on their own, and we can see that it’s loneliness that drives some of their decisions. Divorce is a cruel thing, leaving hearts and lives in tatters. It’s just as important for an older chap to make the right choice, as life is far from over.

  2. Wayne

    How true Jeff. I myself back in1998 was in a similar but not exact situation and 11 years later lost half of everything because of our heartless Family law act 1975. I was warned not to marry my first Filipina by Filipino marriage authorities in the first place as they felt she was not yet up to standard in the pre marriage seminar there. I should’ve listened to them when I look back now. It dismays me that some will yes mincemeat an Aussie as soon as they get to Australia and throw away their obligation as a Filipina to uphold the marriage (even abroad) whether or not both or one party is in the wrong under the Filipino Marriage Code and start behaving like our gold-digging Aussie women here is to why Immigration have gone to the heartless extreme to tighten up like they have. Well, those Filipinas give the real good and genuine Filipinas a bad name in the eyes of our Immigration and make it extremely tough for those that want to spend the rest of their lives with their Aussie spouse.

    • I have no problem with the temporary partner visas leading on to the permanent partner visas, Wayne. There would most certainly be more scamming going on if it wasn’t for that. It takes an exceptional scammer who can keep a happy marriage going in Australia for 2 years or more before gaining a permanent visa and then taking off. But I completely disagree with the 5 year rule and the twice in a lifetime rule. I think it achieves nothing.

      • Wayne

        Well I hope this one I got now will be successful and kick my butt if where I may go wrong because I don’t want to wait another 5 years let alone 2 chances in a lifetime. No it doesn’t achieve anything. You are correct but its nothing we can do but hope that one day the rule makers will wake up to them selves and go back to the drawing board and balance toughness with fairness.

  3. John

    Yes, sounds close to my own first experience with a young filipina, luckily I found out early enough what I was letting myself into so did not get to the stage of applying for a fiancee visa, let alone going into marriage with the young lady. The relationship I have now with my new lady is all I could ask for.

    • Yes, we learn along the way, don’t we? I know I would never appreciate my wonderful wife as much had I not been through the wringer before.

      I still stand by the belief that the majority of Filipina ladies are wonderful human beings. The scammers will always attract more attention, though.

  4. Kevin Turner

    Jeff, ?, your sounding like a Loving Aussie Bloke. But Thank you for making My Dream come True OK Mate. I really hope one day Me and My Lady will get to meet you both. We all have a nice dinner somewhere, but because of your experience, you pick and I pay, ok

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s