Family Sponsorship FAQ

Who qualifies for a Canada Immigration Visa under the Family Sponsorship category?

Close relatives of a Canadian citizen or a Canadian permanent resident.

More particularly, to qualify under the Family Sponsorship category, the Sponsored person(s) must be related to the Canadian Sponsor in one of the following ways:

  • Spouse, common-law partner, or conjugal partner; or
  • Parent or grandparent; or
  • Dependent child; or
  • Orphaned, unmarried, and under 18 years of age brother, sister, nephew, niece, or grandchild; or
  • Intended adopted child under 18 years of age; or
  • One other relative, if the sponsor has no relative listed above and no relatives who are Canadian citizens or Canadian permanent residents.

Who can be included in the Sponsored person’s application for a Canada Immigration Visa?

Under the Family Sponsorhsip category, the following individuals can be included in the Sponsored person’s application for a Canada Immigration Visa:

  • 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

Who qualifies as a “Dependent Child”?

For Family Sponsorship purposes, a dependent child means a child who is:

  • Under 22 and unmarried on the date the application for sponsorship is submitted (and still unmarried on the date the child lands in Canada); or
  • Of any age or marital status and is a continuously enrolled full-time student, who is financially dependent on his or her parents since before the age of 22 (or since becoming a spouse or common-law partner, if this happened before 22); or
  • Is financially dependent on a parent since before the age of 22 because of a disability.

Must the dependents of the Sponsored person accompany the Sponsored person to Canada?

No, but whether they are accompanying the Sponsored person or not, all of the Sponsored person’s dependents are required to pass applicable police and security clearances, and medical examinations.

What financial criteria must be satisfied to qualify as a Sponsor?

To qualify, the Sponsor must be able to demonstrate the financial ability to provide for the essential needs of the Sponsored person(s) and any accompanying dependents. This requirement is waived if:

  • The person requiring sponsorship is the spouse, common-law partner or conjugal partner of the Canadian Sponsor; or
  • The person requiring sponsorship is the dependent child of the Canadian Sponsor.

How long will the entire Sponsorship Application process take?

Spousal, Common-law or Conjugal Sponsorship Applications and the Sponsorship of dependent children are a priority at all Canadian Immigration Visa Offices and such applications are processed ahead of all other applications for permanent residence in Canada.

The length of the Sponsorship Application process varies depending on the Canadian Immigration Visa Office to which the Sponsored person’s Application For Permanent Residence In Canada has been forwarded.


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