What You Need to Know About Spousal Sponsorship in Canada
Are you thinking of applying for spousal sponsorship in Canada?
Spousal sponsorship is a Canadian immigration program that allows Canadian citizens or permanent residents married to people from outside of the country to sponsor them to get their Canadian permanent residence.
If you’re married, engaged, or are considering the possibility of marrying a Canadian and want to learn more about spousal sponsorship in Canada, you’ve reached the right place.
Here’s What You Need to Know About Spousal Sponsorship in Canada
Canadian immigration laws state that your spouse does not have to be a Canadian citizen yet when applying for spousal sponsorship. You can still apply for spousal sponsorship if your spouse is a permanent resident.
Common-law partners can also qualify as sponsors. In Canada, common-law is a serious relationship that has lasted a minimum of at least 12 consecutive months. These relationships include same-sex marriages and same-sex common-law partners.
There are specific criteria your spouse must meet for them to sponsor you:
- Must be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident
- Must be 18 years or older
- Must be able to provide financial support to anyone they may have sponsored in the past
- Must not receive government financial assistance
- Must not face imprisonment or conviction of a violent or sexual offence
- Must not be in prison
The short answer is yes. You can move to Canada if you marry a Canadian – however, it is typically much more complicated than a simple yes.
The biggest hurdle to overcome is proving the relationship. When you marry a Canadian citizen, you do not automatically receive permanent residence or Canadian citizenship. You must apply for both separately, and applying for both takes a considerable amount of time.
What Is the Process of Applying for Spousal Sponsorship?
If you are considering spousal sponsorship in Canada, we recommend first applying for a temporary visitor visa to enter the country while you wait for the processing of the application. Applying for a temporary visitors visa will allow you to stay with your partner in Canada so that you can apply for a temporary work permit.
Proving Your Marriage is Real
A successful spousal sponsorship hinges on the legitimacy of the marriage or partnership. Many people apply for sponsorship and enter into fake relationships to enter the country. You must prove that the relationship between you and your spouse is real. The government will go through the process to ensure that your relationship is real.
You will need to provide additional supporting documentation to prove that your relationship is real. Some of this documentation can include:
- Wedding pictures
- Honeymoon pictures
- Travel pictures
- Phone records
- Affidavits to support the relationship
For common-law relationships:
- Joint bank accounts or any other type of joints account
- Property ownership
- Record of cohabitation (household bills, rentals, etc.)
- Shared documentation listing the same address
- Hone records
You can include as much documentation as you think necessary to prove to Canadian immigration officials that your relationship is real. You may also have an interview about your relationship. If you receive a request for an interview, relax, be yourself, and answer all questions truthfully.
If Canadian Immigration finds that you have misrepresented any information on your application, they will bar you from Canada for two years. Honesty is the best policy.
How to Apply for Spousal Sponsorship in Canada
The application process to apply for the spousal process can be lengthy. It is critical to enter all information correctly. Even the slightest mistake or error can result in a rejected application. Here are two scenarios for the application process:
Spousal Visa Applications from Within Canada
This application is for when both partners are in Canada. If your visa expires after you have applied, you can stay in the country. If you leave, you will not be permitted to enter Canada again, so you must remain in Canada until the entire process is complete.
Applications from inside of Canada typically take longer to process. It will likely take a minimum of 12 months to receive a permanent residency.
Spousal Visa Applications Applications from Outside Canada
Applications from outside of Canada are processed much quicker. Once the application is complete, it takes about six months. Both spouses require approval from the CIC.
You must choose the correct CIC office when you are processing your application.
Becoming a Permanent Resident and Canadian Citizen After Marriage
After the spousal sponsorship is complete, you will receive your Canadian permanent residency. Once you have your permanent residence, you can apply for Canadian citizenship.
You must meet the following requirements to become a Canadian citizen:
- You must not be under investigation and have the possibility of having your permanent residency revoked.
- In the past four years, you need to have been in Canada for a minimum of three years.
- You must be able to speak English or French.
- You must know Canada’s history, culture, and government.
- Canadian Immigration will test you on the above two competencies during the application process.
Suppose you are planning to marry a Canadian citizen and are interested in applying for spousal sponsorship in Canada. In that case, you will need experts who can help you through every step of the application process. At Preferred Immigration, we specialize in spousal sponsorship applications and can guide you through the process.
Apply for Your Spousal Sponsorship Today
Preferred Immigration helps people succeed and begin their new journey. We help our clients overcome any challenges during the spousal sponsorship application process, from evaluating eligibility, documentation for the application, and final acceptance. We make the application process a smooth and easy one. Contact us today to see how we can help you on your immigration journey.
For more information about applying for spousal sponsorship in Canada, click here.
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