To immigrate to Canada under the Family Sponsorship Class (Spousal Sponsorship / Common-law Sponsorship / Grandparents Sponsorship), an individual must be sponsored by a close relative living in Canada as a permanent resident or a Canadian citizen. This is known as Family Sponsorship Class.
A Canadian citizen or a permanent resident can sponsor relatives or family members residing abroad if those relatives are:
- Spouses, common-law or conjugal partners 16 years of age or older;
- Parents and grandparents; -NOTE, new parent and grandparent sponsorships have reached their quota this year by Citizenship and Immigration Canada and will relaunch in January of 2015. We do recommend starting on that application as soon as possible.
- Dependent children, including adopted children;
A son or daughter is considered dependent with regard to immigration when the child:
- is under the age of 22 and does not have a spouse or common-law partner;
- is a full time student and is substantially dependent on a parent for financial support since before the age of 22, or since becoming a spouse or common-law partner (if this happened before age 22); or
- is financially dependent on a parent since before the age of 22 because of a disability.
In some cases, a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident may sponsor a spouse or common-law partner who is already living with them in Canada.
To sponsor a close relative who wish to immigrate to Canada an individual should be:
- 18 years of age or older,
- A Canadian citizen, or a permanent resident living in Canada, and
- Has not defaulted on a previous sponsorship agreement;
- Is not facing criminal charges or awaiting the outcome of an immigration inquiry (if a permanent resident).
- Meets the financial criteria set by immigration authorities (except when sponsoring a spouse).
The last requirement is to demonstrate that the sponsor will be able to ensure their relatives’ basic requirements of everyday living.
To sponsor a relative or family member a Canadian citizen or permanent resident must sign a legal contract with the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration that is called Undertaking. Sponsor must also sign a Sponsorship Agreement with their relative that outlines their mutual commitments to each other.
Family Class applicants are not assessed by the point system. But they have still to prove to the visa officer that they meet Canada’s health and security standards. Family Class Members and their dependents will need to undergo a medical examination and provide a police certificate for every country they have lived in more than six months. They may be called to interview with a visa officer.
When a sponsored relative and their dependents arrive in Canada, they become permanent residents, with all the rights and responsibilities that go with the status.
We can provide the following assistance to applicants in the Family Sponsorship Class:
- Consultation before you begin your application – This is to determine your eligibility and to prepare you for the road ahead – Book your consultation;
- Start to Finish representation;
- Interview training if required;
One of our licensed immigration consultants can speak with you in person, online or on the phone about your unique immigration situation and to give you a breakdown of your options.