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Australian with Polish fianance -Legal Recommendation for Temp Visa/ Extension in Poland


Fiche 1 | 4
26 May 2011  #1
I'm hoping to get some recommendations for a lawyer to help with an immigration issue, or possibly any advice anyone might have.

I'm an Australian, with a Polish fiance. We lived together for a couple of years before moving to Poland over 4 years ago. When we moved here we had been told a partner/spouse visa wasn't possible and I've now overstayed my last (tourist) visa by a couple of years but we've now been told that a Shengen visa may have been possible before. I'm not actually working within Poland so we have had tighter finances which made it difficult to maintain a valid tourist visa.

The issue now is we are planning our wedding for the end of summer but I am fairly sure I'd need a valid visa of some sort. A month or two after the wedding we're planning on moving to Australia.

Getting mixed advice so far, from just apply for an extension and see... which is risky that they might decline it. Else to leave and try to re-enter and see, again risky. Essentially I'd like to know if anyone has had a similar situation and what would be recommended.

I'm not seeking any sort of benefits, medical coverage, financial assistance etc... just to be able to stay until 1/2 months after the wedding (say 6 months from now). My thoughts are to apply for an extension, possibly via an experience lawyer and include as much documentation to validate our relationship, wedding plans, intention to return to Australia, and possible statements about our relationship and my character.

What are your thoughts?
Harry
26 May 2011  #2
Sorry to say this but it sounds to me like you are fuccked, and proper fuccked at that. The first problem you have is that it is impossible to legally reside inside the Schengen zone for more than 90 days in any 180 day period without having a residency permit; the days of being able to leave Poland for a day and then enter on a new tourist visa are well and truly gone. You should have had a residency permit. With that in mind, given that you have overstayed your tourist visa, the last thing that you should do is try to leave Poland! You might either be caught on the way out (and not let out until you've been fined and deported) or not let back in again. But if you apply for a residency permit as an illegal immigrant, which is what you are, you'll also be deported.

There might be one trick that you could possibly try but it's a longshot and might not be possible at all (I've never tried to get married, so I'm not up on the exact procedure). How are you going to get your certificate of no impediment?
OP Fiche 1 | 4
26 May 2011  #3
For the certificate of no impediment, I expect to simply apply via the Australian Embassy in Warsaw. (smartraveller.gov.au/marriage_os.html)

For the marriage I also need to get a certificate from a local authority. I know a city nearby actually only asks for photo ID though the local town I'm in seems to want passport for this which we're trying to confirm.
Dominicus - | 23
26 May 2011  #4
Don't waste your money on a lawyer without consulting with the Australian embassy first. If you couldn't afford the small fee necessary to keep your visa renewed, you'll definitely not be able to afford a lawyer. Besides, that's what the embassy is for. Best bet is to make your way back to Australia and get married there. You can have a non-official ceremony for your fiancee's family in Poland (or even an church wedding if that's what she wants, but don't register it with the civil authorities; do that in Australia).

You do realize that being married to you probably does not affect your wife's ability to enter, live in or work in Australia. You had better check with the embassy about that.
OP Fiche 1 | 4
26 May 2011  #5
I have finally got through to someone at the Australian Embassy, though the help was very limited. They just said that I have to deal with the Polish authorities, and that either to apply for a new visa or possibly easier but also more risky is to leave and apply for a new visa from outside. They did say if we were married it would probably be easier, however, the local town authority says they need passport for this.

The financial situation is not quite the same as it was, and it was not about a small fee to renew a visa but actually needing to go abroad (outside Shengen region / EU) which also is much more significant cost.

We've already started planning for a wedding here, though I'm wondering now if it's even possible to lead with the non-official ceremony whilst here before an official marriage within Australia. We certainly wouldn't be looking to go to Australia first and then returning.
Harry
26 May 2011  #6
it was not about a small fee to renew a visa but actually needing to go abroad (outside Shengen region / EU) which also is much more significant cost.

You don't seem to be listening: going outside Schengen zone only makes a difference to you ability to reside in Poland if you stay outside the Schengen zone for 90 days. Just going out for a day or so does not get you a new visa. Once you have been in Poland for 90 days (or anywhere else in the Schengen zone) you must either get a residency permit or leave the Schengen zone for 90 days. Is it really so hard to get your head round the fact that visa runs are no longer possible?

I know a city nearby actually only asks for photo ID though the local town I'm in seems to want passport for this which we're trying to confirm.

I would suggest getting married in that city then (at least have the civil part of the wedding there and then do the church bit in the way that you have planned it).
OP Fiche 1 | 4
26 May 2011  #7
The situation has changed here with the Shengen 90/180 days... something which hadn't been applying to me previously though I do realise it's the situation now.

Thanks for the advice of the civil ceremony. Will be speaking further with lawyers about applying for an extension (maximising chance) and probably consider looking further into this at the same time.
Harry
26 May 2011  #8
Thanks for the advice of the civil ceremony. Will be speaking further with lawyers about applying for an extension (maximising chance) and probably consider looking further into this at the same time.

I can recommend a good lawyer in Warsaw to deals with this kind of stuff but I strongly suspect that his advice will be much the same as mine, i.e. you are proper fuccked when it comes to extending your visa (you can't extend a visa when you don't have one!), and will cost a fair bit more.

Personally I'd say that your best option is to get the civil ceremony done where-ever you can find a registrar who doesn't insist on seeing your passport and then do the church bit where you plan to do it. Then a week or so before you want to leave Poland, report yourself to the Border Guard for overstaying your visa (make up some excuse about how you thought you were on a fiancee visa). Generally if you go to them, you won't get fined for overstaying (and might even not get banned from the Schengen zone for a few years).
OP Fiche 1 | 4
26 May 2011  #9
Thanks Harry, much appreciated.

The thing about the extension was actually based on what the Polish authorities had said to us a couple of years ago... that it was an option if the visa is overstayed and better to do it before leaving so I'd be leaving on something valid. They said that once the extension was granted (which they made sound like a formality) I'd then have to leave after 3 months and reapply through a Polish Embassy (which we couldn't afford to do so we just held off).

Always a bit difficult here as the "official" advice seems to differ a bit. They also all seem to find it amusing that an Australian is here in the situation... guess not something they'd expect.

Had yet another bit of advice which might be ok, at least so we can continue our plans with wedding here then relocating to Aus. That is, to proceed with a Church wedding but for it to be Church only with no govt recognition and then get a civil ceremony back in Australia. That way we can basically have the wedding here with her family (much bigger than mine) and my immediate family, our friends and then in Aus sort the rest. Just have to have a chat with the Church... they are already amused by it all since we want a slightly mixed ceremony.

We do want to return for a holiday each summer but if we miss a year so be it. Will certainly take that advice on board about reporting my situation as it's what I'd like to do.

Thanks


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