If you got married in Thailand and have registered your marriage then you can apply for a visa from Thailand to Australia for your Thai wife. The Australian visa for a Thai can be applied for. For this temporary visa she can obtain if you are an Australian citizen, an Australian permanent resident or an eligible New Zealand citizen. The marriage should show that you are in a de facto relationship. Note this will not be available if you had a traditional Thai wedding and have not registered your marriage.
The visa process can take up to 12 months to complete in Thailand. Note that in order to obtain this visa you need to meet the following requirements as a couple:
- 1. You must live together;
- 2. You must be in a genuine and ongoing relationship;
- 3. Both parties must have freely consented to the marriage;
- 4. The marriage is legal both in Thailand and in Australia;
- 5. Your wife meets the health requirements;
- 6. Your Thai wife does not have a criminal record;
- 7. Your wife meets the character requirements.
The first visa will be a short temporary visa. After this you have to obtain a longer visa. You can apply for the 5 year partner visa if you have lived together for more than 2 years and have a dependent child else it is 3 years or longer.
Note that you are going to have to prove that you have lived together for more than 3 years as husband and wife in Thailand. These would include accounts and other bills which show that you live in the same apartment or house in Thailand. Australia does not allow forced marriages or arranged marriages where forced had been used. This would also be applicable in Thailand. Note that same-sex marriage would not be legal in Australia however you can apply for a partner visa as a same-sex couple. This is far more complicated as they have to establish a long and genuine relationship. Speak to an attorney about this in Thailand. Polygamous marriages are also not allowed in Australia. In Thailand it has also been outlawed however it is still a common practice where you have a ‘mia noi’ or ‘minor wife’. She would not qualify for a visa nor would the marriage be valid in Thailand if you are already married. Underage marriages are also not allowed. See this website for marriage requirements in Thailand and that getting married to a much younger person requires a court application and parental consent.
See also this website for more information about the health requirements for the visa as well as the process for a criminal record check. You will also note that if your wife has had an application turned down before that you will need to seek legal advice if you are going to apply again. This could be that you wife as an example had TB and since that application has been treated and is now cured of the illness.
Seek legal advice in Thailand when you are not certain about the application process or seek a visa package where they register you marriage, file the prenuptial as well as apply for the visa. These are normally more cost effective and easier to complete.