Canada is still accepting and processing family sponsorship applications.
- Family class immigration has been the least affected by the travel restrictions.
- Immediate family members of citizens and permanent residents are still allowed to enter the country, spousal and common-law sponsorship applications are being processed as usual, with IRCC allowing some flexibility in submitting incomplete applications.
- If you’re traveling by air, you need to follow all airline requirements and pass a health check conducted by airlines before you’re allowed to board your flight. Anyone who shows symptoms of COVID-19 will not be allowed to enter Canada by air.
- When you arrive in Canada, they will assess your health before you leave the port of entry. You must have a plan to quarantine for 14 days when you arrive in Canada. This is mandatory, even if you have no symptoms. If you don’t have a plan, you should not travel to Canada.
- Only people who provide essential services, for example, truck drivers who regularly cross the border to maintain the flow of goods, are exempt from the quarantine requirements.
For more updates on the Coronavirus, visit our page on the impact the Coronavirus has had on Canadian immigration.
Family Class Sponsorship
What is Family Class Sponsorship?
Your relatives can live, study and work in Canada if they become permanent residents of Canada. You can sponsor certain relatives to come to Canada if you’re at least 18 years old and a:
- Canadian citizen or,
- person registered in Canada as an Indian under the Canadian Indian Act or,
- permanent resident of Canada
Canada Family Sponsorship Process
If you are a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident of Canada, age 18 or over, you can sponsor certain family members to become Canadian permanent residents. If you become a permanent resident, you can live, study and work in Canada. If you sponsor a relative to come to Canada as a permanent resident, you are responsible for supporting your relative financially when he or she arrives.
Once the IRCC has received your PR immigration application, you will receive an Acknowledgment of Receipt also known as an AOR. This AOR is a confirmation that your application file has been created. You may also be referred to an "AOR date" which is the date from when your 6 months intended processing time begins.
Requirements to be a Sponsor
To be a sponsor:
- You must be 18 years of age or older.
- You and the sponsored relative must sign a sponsorship agreement that commits you to provide financial support for your relative, if necessary. This agreement also says the person becoming a permanent resident will make every effort to support her or himself.
- You must provide financial support for a spouse, common-law or conjugal partner for three years from the date they become a permanent resident.
- You must provide financial support for a dependent child for 10 years, or until the child turns 25, whichever comes first.
Who You Can Sponsor
You can sponsor:
- Spouse – Outside, Inland, Same-Sex
- Common Law partner – (restrictions apply)
- Conjugal partner – (restrictions apply)
- Dependent children
- parents – (Additional conditions apply)
- grandparents – (Additional conditions apply)
- brothers or sisters, nephews or nieces, granddaughters or grandsons who are orphaned, under 18 years of age and not married or in a common-law relationship
- another relative of any age or relationship but only under specific conditions
- accompanying relatives of the above (for example, spouse, partner and dependent children).
Sponsoring Your Spouse
The Spousal Sponsorship program is a subsection of the Family Class immigration category. Under this program, a Canadian citizen or permanent resident may sponsor a spouse or common-law partner for Canadian permanent residence. Both the Canadian citizen or permanent resident (also called the 'sponsor') and the foreign national (the 'sponsored person') must be approved by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) in order for the sponsored person to receive a visa. In order to receive a visa through this immigration program, the sponsor and sponsored person must prove that their relationship qualifies under one of three categories: Spouse Common-law Partner Conjugal Partner Canada does recognize same-sex couples to be eligible for spousal sponsorship. Inland sponsorship is when the couple is together in Canada and the foreign spouse/common-law partner has temporary status in Canada, either as a worker, student, or visitor. An Outland application is generally pursued when the sponsored partner is living outside of Canada.
Sponsoring Your Child
Dependent children, both natural and adopted, may be sponsored to live with their parent(s) as permanent residents in Canada. The child sponsorship program is a subsection of the Family Class of immigration. To receive a visa through this immigration program, the sponsor and the sponsored person will be required to prove their relationship to one another. Individuals whose adoption proceedings are in the final phases of processing may begin sponsoring their child before the adoption has been finalized.
Who is Eligible for Family Class Sponsorship?
Family sponsorship is a way to reunite families in Canada. In fact, the Canadian government believes in keeping families together, and prioritizes the processing of sponsorship applications. There are many options for family members that are Canadian citizens or permanent residents to sponsor a family member living abroad, to become a permanent resident in Canada.
Requirements for a Sponsor
In addition to being a Canadian citizen or permanent resident, the sponsor must also fulfill a few other requirements in order to be eligible.
The sponsor must:
- Prove that they will be able to financially support their family member and any dependent, if necessary
- Enter into an agreement with the Government of Canada or Quebec, as well as the sponsored relative, where the sponsor will agree to support the family member for a certain amount of time. The sponsored relative must make an effort to support themselves, as well.
- Either reside in Canada prove their intention to live in Canada when the sponsored relative arrives in Canada
- Be at least 18 years old
- Not be incarcerated or charged with a serious offence
- Not be bankrupt
- Not be under a removal order if a Permanent Resident
# of Immigrants Receiving PR Through Family Sponsorship
The 3 Most Common FAQs about Sponsorship
Why Legal Help for Family Sponsorship is Important
Although the government prioritizes the processing of sponsorship applications, being successful is by no means a given. All of the requirements must be met, and even the slightest error on an application can lead to a refusal. In order to take advantage of this great opportunity, individuals should enlist the help of a legal professional who knows how to send a package that will provide an applicant with the best chance to be sponsored.
Why Hire Us to Assist Your Family Sponsorship Case?
With over 15 years experience specializing in helping to reunite families from across the world, we know what immigration officers are looking for when reviewing a sponsorship application. We have helped thousands of individuals to successfully get Canadian permanent residence through family sponsorship, and we can help you too!