BackgroundThe laws relating to bi-national couples have been aggravated consistently since the introduction of the new Aliens Act in 2005. However, the ECHR in its judicature has interpreted Article 8 of the Human Rights Convention in a way that the signatory states have to respect an existing family life in their decisions regarding the granting of residency. Therefore, the following question has arisen: Does the Austrian legislation regarding bi-national couples conform with Human Rights standards?Research methodsThe diploma thesis utilizes interviews with experts as well as case studies are given, in addition to an extensive illustration of the legal bases. Furthermore, the judicature of the ECRH, the Austrian Constitutional Court and Administrative Court towards Art 8 ECHR is analyzed and set in context with the Austrian laws relating to Aliens.ResultsThe research has shown that amendments of the Austrian laws would be necessary in order to conform to the judicature of the ECHR.The definition of the term ?family member? needs to be revised and broadened. At present, the laws relating to Aliens only define the spouse as a family member of the anchor person, whereas the ECHR has ruled in constant judicature, that non-married partners also enjoy the protection of Art 8 ECHR.A right for bi-national couples to family reunification and/or free choice of the country of residence has generally been negated by the ECHR, but could be required in certain circumstances.The case studies presented, show that the current Austrian laws are inadequate at conclusively resolving all real-life cases. In the future though, they could be solved adequately through the newly introduced right to application for residency on humanitarian grounds.