Family Class Sponsorship

Sponsor your Family to Immigrate to Canada. family sponsorship. sponsorship undertaking. Sponsor your Dependent Children. Sponsor your Parents or Grandparents. Sponsor your wife, husband, partner, children and parents and grandparents.

Canadian citizens or permanent residents can sponsor their spouse, common-law partner, or dependent child to immigrate to Canada and become permanent residents. However, both the sponsor and the sponsored person must meet certain requirements to apply.

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Family Class Sponsorship
FCS
Family Class Sponsorship
The Family Class Sponsorship is created to help you to bring your loved ones from abroad to Canada. This Immigration Class has different pathways to make it. Moreover, it is one of the best family reunification programs in the world.

Family Class Sponsorship

The Family Class Sponsorship offers many ways to bring loved ones from abroad to Canada. This is considered one of the most generous family reunification programs worldwide.
This program aims to keep families together where possible. Including spouses, common-law partners, parents, grandparents and dependent children, they all qualify for the Family Class Sponsorship. Furthermore, there is also the Super Visa program, specially created for people with different entry parameters.

Overview of Canadian Immigration Family Sponsorship

The Canadian immigration system focuses on family reunification as one of its main pillars. For a long time, Canada has welcomed immigrants to strengthen its economy, bring families together, and also on humanitarian and compassionate grounds. The Family Class is the second largest category of newcomers welcomed to Canada every year under its Immigration Levels Plan.
Additionally, Canada aims to welcome over 400,000 new immigrants per year. Over 100,000 of those immigrants fall under the family class.
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) manages Canada’s immigration system. So, this department establishes and administers the family sponsorship program. Specifically, detailing the program criteria, reviewing family sponsorship applications, and providing permanent and temporary resident visas.

What is Canadian family sponsorship?

These two main characteristics defined the program:

  • It allows your family members to immigrate to Canada and get permanent residence status (PR).
  • You, as an individual, have a commitment to provide basic needs and support that person financially.
How to Apply for Family Sponsorship

Step 1: Ensure you meet eligibility criteria to be a sponsor.
Step 2: Ensure that the family members you want to sponsor meet the eligibility criteria.
Step 3: You need to apply to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). If you are a Quebec resident, apply at the provincial level to the Ministry of Immigration, Francization, and Integration (MIFI).
Submit your sponsorship application and the permanent residence (PR) applications of your family members together. Once you are considered eligible to sponsor, your PR application will be reviewed.
Step 4: Pay the family sponsorship application fee.
Step 5: Send your application to the right address. You can find this information in the sponsorship guide that is available for download on the government website.

Sponsor your spouse, Common-law Partner or conjugal partner

Your spouse (legally married).
Common-law partner (you are not legally married but have lived together for at least one year).
Conjugal partner (you are not legally married or in a common-law relationship, and they are living outside Canada).

Be at least 18 years old.
Be a Canadian permanent resident living in Canada or Canadian citizen
Demonstrate you can provide the basic needs for yourself and your spouse or partner.
Prove the relationship with the sponsored person is genuine by providing supporting documentation.

Be at least 18 years of age.
Not be too closely related to you.

There are two types of spousal or common-law sponsorship applications:
  • Inland: The application can be made from Canada because the person you sponsored is in Canada. This type of sponsorship allows applicants to continue to live in Canada while their permanent residence application is processed.

When the application is made from within Canada, the sponsoring person may apply for an open work permit while the sponsorship application is being processed.
Besides, spouses or partners can come to Canada by first applying for a Temporary Resident Visa (TRV).

  • Outland: The application is made from abroad through an Embassy or Consulate.

In this case, the person you are sponsoring resides abroad and will wait for permanent residence outside of the country. In the meantime, he/she may visit you in Canada.

Super Visa

As a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident, the Parent and Grandparent (PGP) Super Visa allows your parents and grandparents to come to Canada as visitors for two consecutive years at their initial visit without having to renew their status.
The visa can remain valid for up to 10 years, allowing for re-entry during this period of time.
This program is always open. Besides, you can apply at the same time as the Parent and Grandparent Sponsorship Program.

Be the parent or grandparent of a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident of Canada.
Sign a letter of invitation from your child or grandchild.
Have medical insurance.
Apply for the super visa from outside Canada.
If requested, you might need to provide additional documentation.

As a parent or grandparent, your application is processed at a Canadian visa office in your place of residence, outside of Canada.
Moreover, your Canadian child or grandchild has to prove their household meets the minimum necessary income.

Minimum Necessary Income requirements for this program

 

Size of Family UnitMinimum necessary income
1 person (your child or grandchild)$24,949
2 persons$31,061
3 persons$38,185
4 persons$46,362
5 persons$52,583
6 persons$59,304
7 or more$66,027
More than 7 persons, for each additional person, add$6,723

Parents and grandparents’ purpose visit to Canada.
Parents and grandparents maintain sufficient ties to their home country (proven by showing family ties, finances, and other similar connections outside of Canada).
A medical examination is required for all Super Visa applicants (forms and instructions will be issued by the visa office after application submission).

Frequently Asked Questions

To sponsor a family member, you must meet the following criteria:

Be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada.
Be 18 years of age or older.
Be able to support the sponsored person for several years.

Spouses and common-law partners.
Dependent children.
Parents and grandparents.

However, it may be possible to sponsor a sister, niece, or uncle if:

you don’t have any other immediate family members to sponsor.
you have legally adopted them,  and they meet the definition of a dependent child.

As a sponsor, you are required to sign a Sponsorship Agreement with your sponsored family member. This is a commitment by you to provide financial support for the basic needs (food, clothing, shelter, and health needs not covered by public health services) of the person you are sponsoring.

For some types of sponsorships, you will also have to meet or exceed the Low Income Cut-off (LICO), for instance if:

You are sponsoring a spouse or partner who has a dependent child and that dependent child has one or more children of their own, or
You are sponsoring a dependent child who has one or more dependent children of their own, or
You are sponsoring a parent or grandparent.

If you reside in Quebec, you will have to meet Quebec’s sponsorship requirements and your income will be assessed by the Quebec immigration ministry.

Signing an “undertaking” makes you legally responsible for the family member you are sponsoring. In the case your family member needs government social assistance, you will have to repay this money.

The undertaking is valid for a certain period. So, it won’t be cancelled even if circumstances change (i.e. if the person you are sponsoring becomes a Canadian citizen, if you divorce or separate or have financial problems).

The length of the undertaking will depend on the family member you are sponsoring. In the case of children, it depends on their age:

 

Sponsored personLength of undertaking (excluding Quebec)
Spouse, common-law partner or conjugal partner3 years
Dependent child10 years, or until age 25, whichever comes first
Dependent child 22 years of age or older3 years
Parent or grandparent20 years
Other relative10 years

 

In the case of Quebec, these are the times.

Sponsored personLength of undertaking
Spouse, common-law partner or conjugal partner3 years
Dependent child under 16 years of ageMinimum 10 years (or until age 18), whichever is longer
Dependent child 16 years of age and olderMinimum 3 years (or until age 25), whichever is longer
Other relatives10 years

Following individuals can be included in the sponsored person’s application:

The spouse, common-law partner, or conjugal partner of the sponsored person.
The dependent children of the sponsored person.
The dependent children of the sponsored person’s spouse, common-law partner or conjugal partner.
The dependent children of the sponsored person’s dependent children.
The dependent children of the sponsored person’s spouse, common-law partner or conjugal partner’s children.

It varies depending on the type of sponsorship and the number of family members you already have under your care. Also, you need to sign a promise to provide for the basic needs of the family member you are sponsoring.

Some sponsorship options will require you to prove that you have a minimum income to be eligible to sponsor. For instance, it occurs with the Parent and Grandparent Sponsorship Program.

To meet the requirement, you must exceed the Minimum Necessary Income (MNI) set by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) for each of the past 3 taxation years before the date that you submit your application.

Keep in mind that your MNI is based on your Canada Revenue Agency Notice of Assessment.

However, sponsors living in the province of Quebec must meet different income requirements.

It means that the sponsor must provide the sponsored family members with:

Food, clothing, shelter
Dental and eye care and other health need not be covered by public health services available to all Canadian citizens and permanent residents.

Your obligation to provide for the basic needs will only arise if the sponsored person(s) cannot provide for these needs on their own.

Yes, it can be shared with a co-signer. It can be the sponsor’s spouse, common-law partner or conjugal partner.

You must sign an undertaking with the Government of Canada where you promise to provide for the basic needs of the sponsored person(s). This agreement is valid for a period of time following the arrival of the sponsored person(s) in Canada.
This agreement ensures sponsored family members won’t become dependent on Canadian social assistance.
If you live in Quebec, your undertaking promise is with the Government of that province.

The period varies depending on the type of family member. And it begins on the day they become a permanent resident.

Sponsored personLength of undertaking (excluding Quebec)
Spouse, common-law partner or conjugal partner3 years
Dependent child10 years, or until age 25, whichever comes first
Dependent child 22 years of age or older3 years
Parent or grandparent20 years
Other relative10 years

For Quebec residents:

Sponsored personLength of undertaking
Souse, common-law partner or conjugal partner3 years
Dependent child under 16 years of ageMinimum 10 years (or until age 18), whichever is longer
Dependent child 16 years of age and olderMinimum 3 years (or until age 25), whichever is longer
Other relatives10 years

No, once made, it cannot be cancelled or modified after the Sponsored (s) have arrived in Canada.

It may result in legal action against the sponsor and the co-signer (if applied).

If it happens, the sponsor’s spouse, common-law partner, or conjugal partner may act as a co-signer to the undertaking. In that way, their combined financial abilities will be assessed.
Although, if the combined financial abilities of the sponsor and the co-signer do not meet the minimum requirements, the Family Sponsorship Application will be refused.

The sponsor must sign a Sponsorship Agreement with the sponsored person(s). By signing this agreement, the sponsor agrees to provide for the “Essential needs” and the sponsored person(s) promise to make every effort to become self-supporting.

Yes, as they have a work permit or a study permit. However, while the spousal or common-law partner applications are being processed, the sponsored person must keep legal status in Canada (visitor, student or worker).
Then, the spouse or partner you are sponsoring may apply for an open work permit and work for almost any Canadian employer without first obtaining a valid job offer.

Yes.

How much do Spousal Sponsorships cost in Canada?

 

FeesIn Canadian dollars
Sponsorship Fee$ 75
Principal applicant processing fee$ 475
Right of Permanent Residence Fee$ 500
Biometrics$ 85
Total$ 1, 135

If you are sponsoring your spouse and they have dependent children, an additional payment of $150 CAD is required for each child.

If the sponsor resides in Quebec, an additional fee of $289 CAD is required.

Yes. In that way, you must submit separate applications for each person (or couple) you are sponsoring.

No. After marrying a Canadian you can then apply for a spousal sponsorship. The married spouse becomes a permanent resident of Canada after the sponsorship application is approved.

Your application will not be processed until a final adoption decision has been made. However, you can start the sponsorship process when the adoption is in its final phase.

No. Still, all of the sponsored person’s dependents need to pass police and security clearances and medical exams.

Most of the time, you don’t. But, if there is no documentation to support your relationship, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada may want to meet with you and your sponsored family member.
It may also happen if there is conflicting information on the forms submitted. For instance, age, religious difference, or little or no previous cohabitation.

You don’t need to submit proof of income when sponsoring your spouse. However, an IRCC officer may ask you to attend an interview to know how you will support yourself and your spouse.

You may be ineligible if you:

are in prison.
Don’t your child support payments.
have declared bankruptcy and have not yet been discharged.
have defaulted on an immigration loan, made late payments, or defaulted on payments.
have sponsored another relative and have not complied with the terms of the sponsorship agreement.
were convicted of a violent crime.

To sponsor your relative, you apply through the following steps:

Get the application package from the government website and read the instruction guide.
Fill out the required forms.
Pay your application fee. It includes processing fees, biometrics and third-party fees.
Send your application to the mailing address indicated in the application guide.

Spousal sponsorship: approximately 12 months.
Dependent children: It varies by country.
Parents and Grandparents (PGP): It takes around 20 – 24 months.

According to the Immigration Levels Plan, Canada welcomes over 100,000 family class immigrants each year.

IRCC provides guidelines to demonstrate proof of the relationship in each application.
Take into account that the requirements vary based on the person you are sponsoring. For instance, a birth certificate can be used when you are looking to sponsor a parent, grandparent, or child.
On the other hand, a marriage certificate can be used when you look to sponsor your spouse.
Other documents like photos, travel itineraries, bank accounts, emails, wedding invitations can help you with your spousal sponsorship.

The evidence you should submit to IRCC must include:

A completed version of the IMM 5532 questionnaire, which is called the “Relationship Information and Sponsorship Evaluation”.

A marriage certificate .

If a spouse was previously married, you need proof of divorce .

If the couple have children in common, you need long-form birth certificates or adoption records with the names of both parents.

Wedding invitations and photos.

Couples also need to provide documents from at least two of the following items.

Evidence of joint ownership of residential property.

Rental agreement showing the couple are occupants of the property.

Evidence of joint utility accounts (such as electricity, gas, telephone, internet).

Joint credit cards or bank accounts.

Car insurance showing they both been declared to the insurance company as residents of the same address.

Government identification showing the same address (such as a driver’s license).

Phone bills, pay stubs, financial statements, tax records, insurance policies or other documents showing they have the same address.

In case they cannot provide at least 2 documents, they need a  written explanation letter.

According to IRCC, your evidence needs to include:

A completed IMM 5532 questionnaire (this is included in your application package).
If either member of the couple was previously married, they need a document of separation from the former spouse..
A completed IMM 5519 form if either member of the couple was once in a common-law relationship with someone else.
If the couple have children in common, long-form birth certificates listing the names of both parents photos of the couple together.

You also need to provide at least two of the following sets of documents (or a written explanation if you are unable to provide them ) .

Documents showing the couple is recognized as being in a common-law relationship .
Proof of shared expenses or financial support .
Evidence that friends and/or family recognize the relationship.It can be letters or social media information showing the relationship is public.

Furthermore, if the couple is living together, they need to provide evidence of at least two of the following sets of documents. If they can not provide, they need or a written explanation).

Proof of joint ownership of residential property.
Rental agreement showing the couple are occupants of the property.
Joint utility accounts. It can be electricity, gas, telephone, internet).
Joint credit cards or bank accounts.
Car insurance showing the couple have both been declared to the insurance company as residents of the same address.
Government-issued identification showing the same address .

phone bills, pay stubs, financial statements, tax records, insurance policies or other documents showing they have the same address.

On the other hand, if the couple is not living together, they need evidence to show they previously lived together for at least one year via the following:
evidence they have been in contact together via letters, text messages that have been printed, email, social media conversations, or other documents showing they have been in contact. This should be a maximum of 10 pages of evidence.
evidence that the Canadian citizen or permanent resident has visited their partner. It can be proved via flight tickets, boarding passes or passport photocopies with stamps. If visits did not take place, an explanation needs to be included in the IMM 5532 questionnaire.

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