Family Class Sponsorship

Relatives of Canadian citizens and permanent residents may obtain permanent residency in Canada

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So, you have obtained your permanent residency in Canada, but you have family members in your country of origin, who require your care? Canada supports and recognizes the importance of family reunification and encourages family sponsorship through its Family Class Sponsorship program.

You can sponsor certain relatives to come to Canada if you meet certain requirements. You must be at least 18 years old, a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident of Canada. You can sponsor:

  • Your spouse or partner
  • Your dependent children
  • Children adopted in or outside of Canada
  • Sibling, nephew, niece or grandchild who is under 18 years old, orphaned and not married
  • Other relatives if you do not have a spouse, dependent children, or parents.

If you do sponsor your family, make sure that you can financially support them and that they do not need social assistance from the government. To become a sponsor, for instance, you must make a written undertaking to provide financial support for your sponsored family members and to repay any provincial social assistance that your family members get during a certain period of time under the Family Class Sponsorship program.

The period depends on the type of family member you are sponsoring (from 3 years to 20 years) and is different for Quebec. In most cases, there is no income requirement unless you want to sponsor a dependent child who has a dependent child of their own. If you live in Quebec, your income will be assessed by the Quebec Immigration Ministry.

Due to cases of so-called “green-card” marriages, regulations for spouse or partner sponsorship have become stricter recently. Some of the “red flags” of such type of relationship include a very recent marriage certificate, long separation. Nevertheless, immigration officials do take into account any specific cultural and religious practices. As a result, it is best to make your application true to the facts and not try to hide any part of your relationship with your spouse, as this will call for suspicion.

You cannot sponsor someone who is inadmissible to Canada due to security, medical, or criminal reasons.

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