Spousal sponsorship is a key component of Canada’s immigration system.
Under its Immigration Levels Plan 2021-2023, Canada aims to welcome 80,000 new immigrants per year through its Spousal, Partner, and Children category. The vast majority of these immigrants will arrive as the spouses and partners of Canadian citizens and permanent residents.
The processing of spousal sponsorship applications has been delayed throughout the coronavirus pandemic, however Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) should be able to get its processing standards back on track once COVID-19 has been contained.
If you are a Canadian citizen or permanent resident, here is information on how you can sponsor your loved one for immigration to Canada.
Citizens and permanent residents of Canada may sponsor their spouse, common-law partner, or conjugal partner to obtain permanent resident status.
IRCC must approve of the Canadian citizen or permanent resident (the “sponsor”) and the foreigner (the “sponsored person”). To receive approval, the sponsor and sponsored person must demonstrate to IRCC their relationship falls under of the following categories (note that Canada recognizes same-sex relationships):
Canadian citizens and permanent residents may be eligible to sponsor if they meet this criteria:
Any of the following three groups can be sponsored. All sponsored persons must be at least 18 years old:
IRCC asks for two applications to be submitted together at the same time: the sponsorship application and permanent residence application.
Step 1: Find out if you are eligible to sponsor.
Step 2: Get IRCC’s application package.
Step 3: Pay necessary fees on IRCC’s website. Fees usually include processing fees, right of permanent residence fee, and biometrics fee.
Step 4: Mail the two applications together to IRCC.
Couples must fulfil certain responsibilities once IRCC approves their application:
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