Recent changes to the Spousal and Common Law Sponsorship Program will simplify and decrease the application processing times. Canada supports Family Reunification and therefore has implemented many immigration options to help Canadian Citizens and Permanent Residents of Canada reunite with their loved ones.
Sponsoring a Spouse / Partner Inside of Canada
In order to sponsor a Spouse, Common Law Partner or Conjugal Partner from within Canada your Sponsor MUST live together with the person being sponsored and MUST have temporary status in Canada as a worker, student or visitor. This person being sponsored may be eligible for an Open Work Permit. This is referred to as Inland Spousal Sponsorship.
Sponsoring a Spouse / Partner Outside of Canada
In order to sponsor a Spouse, Common Law Partner or Conjugal Partner from outside of Canada you and your spouse may live together or may not live together however processing an application from outside of Canada makes you eligible to appeal any refusal, whereas with an inland spousal sponsorship application you will not have this right of appeal. Processing your application from outside of Canada means that your application will be processed through the visa office in your country of origin or where you legally reside. This is referred to as Outland Spousal Sponsorship.
To Be Eligible To Sponsor
- You must be a Canadian Citizen or Permanent Resident living in Canada
- You must be 18 years or older
- You must not be in prison, bankrupt, under a removal order or changed with any serious offences.
- You yourself as a sponsor cannot have been sponsored to Canada as a spouse within the last 5 years immediately prior to entering into a Sponsorship
Who can you Sponsor under the Spousal / Partner Sponsorship Program?
- Spouse such as Husband, Wife, Partner as long as the marriage is legally recognized in Canada.
- Common Law Partner (Person you are living with but not married to)
- Conjugal Partner - If your partner does not qualify under the Spouse or Common Law Partner category but you are in a committed relationship equal to that of a marriage fora at least 1 year prior to applying.
Canada recognizes same sex marriages and partners and are eligible to apply under these categories.
In evaluating a spousal / partner Sponsorship file a Canadian Officer will consider if your relationship is genuine and the officer must find that your relationship is real and has not be entered into primarily for the purpose of acquiring Permanent Residence. This is often determined after close review or supporting documents included with your file.
Requirements After Sponsorship
- Sponsor is financially responsible for the person sponsored for 3 years from the date that they become a Permanent Resident of Canada.
- Individuals that come to Canada as a spouse are themselves barred from sponsoring a spouse into Canada for 5 years after receiving Canadian Permanent Residence.