Sponsorship in Canada could mean bringing your spouse, common-law partner, conjugal partner, children, and even parents and grand-parents to immigrate to Canada. sponsoring is a two way process, in the sense that it involves a person present in Canada, the sponsor, and person living outside Canada, the applicant, working collaboratively along with the respective agencies that are applicable to their case such as Citizenship and Immigration Canada. Sponsoring another person to immigrate to Canada deals with many requirements and all of these requirements are different depending on the person you are sponsoring, their status to you, and your status as a sponsor.
If the person you are sponsoring is a foreign national residing outside Canada, then you must apply for the sponsorship through the Family Class. Under the Family Class you can sponsor your spouse, common law or conjugal partner and have to meet certain requirements:
Spousal sponsorship, where the applicant is legally married to the sponsor as recognised under Canadian Law and the laws of the country or region where the marriage was conducted
Common-Law, where the applicant and the sponsor have cohabited for a period of at least one year in a committed and genuine relationship; proof such as joint finances and residential leases will need to be provided to verify
Conjugal Relationship, where the applicant and the sponsor have been in a committed and genuine relationship for at least one year but were not able to live together for reasons beyond their control such that if the reason did not exist then both the applicant and the sponsor will be able to live as common-law partners. Such barriers can include divorce, re-marriage, and same-sex relationships being illegal in certain countries; or immigration barriers that prevent the two partners from seeing each other
There are certain financial requirements which the sponsor must undertake when sponsoring a person depending on their relation with the sponsor. The financial undertaking ensures the applicant or the sponsor will not rely on the Government for funding.
The person who wishes to bring his/her partner into Canada must meet certain requirements to be eligible for sponsorship. There are two requirements which must be met by the sponsor regardless of which category he/she applies under;
The sponsor, as well as the applicant, must both be above 18 years of age at the time of applying
The sponsor must not currently be in any proceeding regarding bankruptcy, or if he/she did file for bankruptcy in the past, then those must be discharged
As well as with these two requirements, there are additional requirements which must be met;
The sponsor must be a Canadian Citizen or Permanent Resident.
If the sponsor resides in Quebec then he/she must also meet Quebec’s condition to sponsor.
Are below 18 years of age
Did not pay child support or alimony in the past even when ordered by a Court to do so
Received social assistance or welfare from the province for reason other than being mentally or physically disabled
Were convicted of a crime that was violent and/or sexual in nature
Were convicted of a crime against a family member or relative in which you caused bodily harm to the other person
Were sponsored as a spouse, common-law, or conjugal partner in the past and became a Permanent Resident of Canada less than 3 years ago
Are currently involved in bankruptcy proceedings
Declared bankruptcy in the past which is yet to be discharged
This list is not exhaustive by any means and is only a basic guideline. Several other factors can influence your eligibility status as a sponsor.
Under the family class you can sponsor your dependent children to come live with you if your son or daughter is
Under the age of 19 and does not have a spouse or common-law partner of their own
Either 19 or above but largely depends on you for financial support even before the age of 19 due to a physical or mental illness
You, the sponsor, cannot sponsor an applicant if they are:
Under the age of 18
Have not lived with you for at least one year (unless applying for a conjugal relationship)
If you have sponsored another spouse, common-law partner, or conjugal partner in the past and three years have not passed since the person became a permanent resident, or five years if the application was submitted on or after March 2 2012
Sponsoring you spouse, common-law partner, or conjugal partner, does not require you have a concrete annual income; although a strong income is highly recommended in order for you to support yourself and your partner or spouse when they come to Canada. You are required to prove that you at least meet or exceed the financial requirements when you sponsor a person who is NOT your spouse, common-law partner, conjugal partner, their children, or your own children who have no dependent children of their own. This means you must be financially eligible for a group that consists:
Of your family members and you, even if they do not live with you, such as your parents or grand-parents
The person you are sponsoring and their family members
All the individuals you have sponsored in the past for whom your financial responsibility is still in effect or has yet to come into effect
All the applicants you have co-signed a sponsorship for
All the persons for whom your spouse or common-law partner has signed a sponsorship for and their financial responsibility is still in effect or has yet to come into effect. This only applies if your spouse or common-law partner is co-signing your current sponsorship.
If you solely fail to meet the monetary requirements as required to sponsor your parents or grand-parents then you can get your spouse or common-law partner to co-sign your sponsorship. This means they also undertake the financial accountability of the sponsorship, and the same penalty will apply to them as to you, the sponsor, if the financial upholding is not met.
The table below states the minimum income required, looking at the number of the family members being sponsored, to meet the basic family needs
Number of Family Members
Base Income Required per Annum (Canadian $)
You may be required to attend an interview with an immigration officer of your documents are deemed unreliable. Your partner and you will be interviewed separately and are likely to asked questions about your relationship such as;
What job or position did your spouse or partner hold?
When did you for vacation together? Where did you go?
What is your partner’s or spouse’s favourite place to eat
What is your spouse’s or partner’s date of birth?
Describe the accommodation where you both lived?
We highly recommend you to seek the help of an immigration law firm with years of practical experience in the field, such as Akrami and Associates as spousal sponsorship is often a challenging and sensitive task to accomplish. An unsuccessful application could mean you may not be able to see your partner for an extra few months. Contact us at Akrami and Associates for the best guidance on how to proceed with your application.
With Akrami and Associates there is always a way!!