Submitted by: Natasha Grof
As a Canadian citizen or permanent resident you may be eligible to sponsor certain family members to become permanent residents of Canada. You may sponsor your spouse, common law partner, conjugal partner, or dependent children as members of the family class. In addition, you may also sponsor other relatives such as parents and grandparents. Generally, a citizen or permanent resident cannot sponsor siblings to become permanent residents.
Common law partners can be of the same or opposite sex. In order to sponsor your common law partner, you and your partner must have lived in the same household continuously for at least 12 months and prove that you and your partner have combined your household affairs. This can be done, for example, by showing proof of joint bank accounts, joint ownership of property, and other joint accounts.
Conjugal partners are for those couples, either of the same or opposite sex, who, due to exceptional circumstances beyond their control, cannot qualify as common-law spouses living together. For example, same-sex cohabitation in some countries can be dangerous, making it difficult or impossible to satisfy the 12 month cohabitation rule under the common law category. The conjugal partner category offers a solution for those couples in similar circumstances.
Permanent Residents enjoy many privileges in Canada and can work and study freely. Permanent Residents, however, cannot run for or vote for political office or hold certain high-level security jobs. Also, as a Permanent Resident you may be removed from Canada if you become inadmissible.
Before submitting an application under the sponsorship category you will want to make sure that you meet the requirements to qualify as a sponsor and that the family member you intend to sponsor qualifies under the family class and is not inadmissible due to criminality, for example.
Before you sponsor someone to become a permanent resident you should be aware of your responsibilities as a sponsor. You will have to provide financial support for your family member, if necessary, for up to 3 years from the date they became a permanent resident. This will be the case even if you separate from your sponsored spouse, common law, or conjugal partner. If you have sponsored dependent children, you must provide financial support for them for 10 years or until they reach the age of 25, whichever comes first. If during the time that you are financially responsible for your sponsored family member they receive social assistance, you may be responsible to repay the amount of social assistance received.
As a sponsor, you should be cautious of marriage fraud. Unfortunately, many unsuspecting Canadians/Permanent Residents fall in love and marry someone who they believe also genuinely love them back, only to find out that once permanent resident status is obtained, their spouse vanishes. If you find yourself in this situation, seek the assistance of a Canadian Immigration lawyer, who can assist you in notifying Canadian Border Services Agency and Citizenship Immigration Canada.
For assistance with sponsoring your family members to Canada, contact a Canadian Immigration lawyer who will provide you with professional legal advice and can assist you with all your immigration needs.
THIS ARTICLE IS FOR GENERAL INFORMATION ONLY AND IS NOT LEGAL ADVICE. Your legal needs are very specific and depend on the unique circumstances of your case. For legal advice, please contact a Canadian Immigration lawyer.
About the Author: Natasha Grof is a Canadian Immigration Lawyer. To speak with
Victoria BC Lawyers
, contact Velletta & Company,
Canadian Immigration Lawyers
for legal advice on immigrating to Canada