It is important to be with one’s family, especially if you are working and living in a country that’s not your own. That’s when you need your loved ones around even more.
If you are a Canadian citizen or permanent resident and want to sponsor your spouse, common-law partner, or conjugal partner (a foreign national in all three cases) to live with you and become a permanent resident of Canada, here’s what you need to know.
To be eligible to sponsor, you must tick the following boxes:
- You must be aged 18 years or older.
- You must be:
- A Canadian citizen
- A permanent citizen living in Canada
- Registered under the Canadian Indian Act
- You must either be already living in Canada or living elsewhere as a Canadian citizen but planning on returning to Canada.
- You are not getting social assistance (unless it is for disability).
- You are in a position to provide financially for your own and your spouse’s/partner’s basic needs (and for dependent children, if applicable)
- The person you want to sponsor must be 18 years of age or older.
- They must clear all set security, medical, and background checks.
- If you are sponsoring your spouse, you will have to show proof of being legally married.
- If you are sponsoring your common-law partner, you have to show proof of having lived with them for at least a year in a marriage-like relationship.
- If you are sponsoring your conjugal partner, you have to show proof of being in a committed relationship with them for at least a year but facing barriers like religious, immigration, or cultural issues that have prevented you from cohabiting.
Reasons why you may be ineligible to sponsor
- You had previously sponsored some and have been unable to return the social assistance received for the duration of the undertaking.
- You have declared bankruptcy which has still not been discharged.
- You are in default on a performance bond or immigration loan.
- You have not paid court-mandated alimony or child support.
- You have been or were convicted of a sexual or violent crime or are in jail/prison/penitentiary/reformatory.
- You have already applied for sponsorship of a partner or spouse and are still awaiting the decision.
Along with the complete sponsorship application form, there are certain documents that must be attached for spousal sponsorship. Here’s the list:
- Identity proofs
- Canadian status proof
- Marriage certificate
- Medical certificate
- Digital photographs
- Payment fee proof
- Police certificate and clearances from countries your spouse/partner has lived in for six months (or longer) since 18 years of age.
- A completed relationship information and sponsorship questionnaire
- Wedding invitation and photographs
- Marriage registration proof from a government authority
- Birth certificates/adoption records of children you and your spouse have together
- Relationship proofs, such as:
- Car insurance
- Shared bank accounts
- Documents showing joint ownership of property
This list may vary slightly for common-law or conjugal partners.
In most cases, it takes around a year for the sponsorship to be processed. Regional and circumstantial factors may shorten or lengthen this time period. Do note that both a Canadian citizen and a permanent resident can be the sponsor.
In case you are without a job, you may wonder if you are eligible to sponsor your spouse’s immigration to Canada. Do note that your application will NOT be refused on the grounds of your work status. All you have to do is present adequate proof that your spouse and you will be able to support yourselves once your spouse enters Canada.
Also, in case your spouse wants to visit Canada while waiting for the spousal sponsorship visa, they can do so as long as they hold a valid visitor visa.
It is obvious that you would want your loving spouse to be with you in your place of living and work. You will find the task of sponsoring your spouse for Canadian immigration an easy one if you would just go over the given information clearly. In case you feel it is an onerous task, just get in touch with a reputed immigration consultant, and they will ensure that you and your loved ones are together as soon as possible.