Requirements to sponsor spouse in Canada

Requirements to Sponsor a Spouse in Canada

Sponsoring a spouse to live in Canada is a significant decision that allows families to reunite and build a life together. The Canadian government offers a sponsorship program that enables Canadian citizens and permanent residents to sponsor their spouses for immigration. This article will outline the requirements to sponsor a spouse in Canada, including eligibility criteria, the application process, necessary documents, financial responsibilities, processing time, and the rights and responsibilities of sponsored spouses.

Eligibility Criteria for Sponsorship

To sponsor a spouse in Canada, you must meet the following eligibility criteria:

Canadian Citizenship or Permanent Residency: You must be either a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident of Canada.

At Least 18 Years Old: You must be at least 18 years old to be eligible as a sponsor.

Financial Capability: Sponsors must demonstrate the ability to provide financial support to their sponsored spouses. This includes meeting the minimum necessary income requirement, which ensures that the sponsored spouse does not require government financial assistance.

No Default: You must not be in default of any previous sponsorship undertakings or any court-ordered financial obligations.

Eligibility Criteria for the Sponsored Spouse

The spouse being sponsored must also meet specific eligibility criteria, including:

Legal Relationship: The sponsored spouse must be legally married to the sponsor, or in a common-law or conjugal relationship.

Admissibility: The sponsored spouse must be admissible to Canada, meaning they must pass medical, criminal, and security checks. Inadmissibility can arise from issues such as criminal records or a threat to national security.

Application Process

The process of sponsoring a spouse involves several steps:

Submission of the Application: The sponsor completes and submits the sponsorship application to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). This application includes both the sponsorship and permanent residence applications.

Processing and Verification: IRCC reviews the application to ensure it is complete and accurate. They may request additional information or documentation if necessary.

Medical and Security Checks: The sponsored spouse must undergo medical examinations and provide police certificates to prove their admissibility to Canada.

Approval and Issuance of Visa: If the application is approved, the sponsored spouse will receive a visa and can proceed with their plans to move to Canada.

Supporting Documents

When applying to sponsor a spouse, you will need to provide supporting documents, such as:

  • Proof of Canadian citizenship or permanent residency.
  • Proof of relationship, such as marriage certificates or evidence of common-law partnership.
  • Valid identification documents for both the sponsor and sponsored spouse.
  • Police certificates from all countries where the sponsor or sponsored spouse has lived for a significant period.
  • Medical examination reports for the sponsored spouse.

Financial Requirements

Sponsors have a financial obligation to support their sponsored spouses. The purpose of this requirement is to ensure that sponsored spouses do not rely on social assistance programs in Canada. Sponsors must demonstrate that they have sufficient income to support their spouse and meet the minimum necessary income threshold. The specific income requirements depend on the size of the family unit.

Processing Time

The processing time for spousal sponsorship applications can vary depending on various factors. The Canadian government aims to process applications as quickly as possible. However, the processing time may depend on the volume of applications, the completeness of the application package, and the complexity of the case. It is advisable to check the current processing times on the official website of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).

Rights and Responsibilities of Sponsored Spouses

Once the sponsored spouse arrives in Canada, they have certain rights and responsibilities. These include the right to work and study in Canada, access to healthcare benefits, and the responsibility to abide by Canadian laws and regulations. The sponsored spouse should also make efforts to integrate into Canadian society, learn the official languages, and actively participate in community life.

In conclusion, sponsoring a spouse to join you in Canada requires meeting specific requirements and following the proper application process. It is essential to carefully review and understand these requirements to ensure a smooth and successful sponsorship process. By fulfilling the eligibility criteria, providing supporting documents, and demonstrating a genuine relationship, you can reunite with your spouse in Canada and start a new chapter of your lives together.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I sponsor a common-law partner instead of a legally married spouse? 

Yes, the Canadian sponsorship program allows you to sponsor a common-law partner if you meet the specific criteria for common-law relationships.

Can I sponsor a same-sex spouse in Canada? 

Yes, same-sex couples are eligible to apply for spousal sponsorship in Canada. The Canadian government recognizes and supports same-sex relationships.

What if my sponsorship application is refused? Can I appeal the decision? 

If your sponsorship application is refused, you may have the option to appeal the decision. It is advisable to consult with an immigration professional to understand the options available to you.

Can I sponsor my spouse if I am living outside of Canada? 

Yes, you can sponsor your spouse even if you are living outside of Canada. However, you must provide evidence of your intention to live in Canada once the sponsored spouse arrives.

Can I sponsor a spouse if I have a criminal record? 

Having a criminal record may affect your eligibility to sponsor a spouse. It is recommended to consult with an immigration professional to assess your specific situation and determine the best course of action.

Do you need Canadian family visa?

Contact our team of skilled immigration lawyers to discuss your visa and immigration needs.

Call us on +234 812 5505 986 or WhatsApp us at +234 818 1547 085 for immediate assistance with your situation. We are available to assist you in person, over the phone, or online.

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