Family Sponsorships

Many Canadian citizens and permanent residents have loved ones abroad that they wish they could bring to Canada

The Canadian government offers a number of ways to allow this dream to become a reality under its Family Class Sponsorship class. Canada’s Family Class Sponsorship programs are some of the most generous family reunification programs in the developed world. After all, the Canadian government is committed to keeping families together whenever possible.

Family Sponsorships Image

There are a number of relationships that qualify for Family Class Sponsorship, including spouses and common-law partnersparents and grandparents, and dependent children. For parents and grandparents, there is also the Super Visa program.

There are the requirements that have to be met both by the Sponsor in Canada and their Sponsored family member.  These requirements might differ depending on the program. Family reunification or Family sponsorship is one of the quickest ways to obtain Canadian permanent residence. If your spouse or your child is currently a Canadian permanent resident or Canadian citizen, Canadian laws allow them to sponsor you to come to Canada.

If you are married or are in a common-law or conjugal relationship, your partner is eligible to sponsor you through the Inland Spousal Sponsorship or Out-land Spousal Sponsorship: depends on whether you are currently in Canada or not.

  • Spouse or Common-Law Partner Sponsorship

Who can apply to sponsor spouses, partners, or children?

You can be a sponsor if you are: 

  • at least 18 years of age
  • a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident living in Canada
    • If you are a Canadian citizen living outside Canada, you must show that you plan to live in Canada when your sponsored relative(s) become(s) a permanent resident.
    • You can’t sponsor someone if you are a permanent resident living outside Canada.
  • able to prove that you are not receiving social assistance for reasons other than a disability and
  • can provide for the basic needs of any person you are sponsoring (and in some limited situations, that you meet the low-income cut-off)


Who you can sponsor?

To be eligible for permanent residence, the principal applicant and any dependents must be admissible to Canada

You can sponsor your spouse, common-law partner, or conjugal partner if:

  • they are at least 18 years old
  • your relationship is genuine and wasn’t entered into just to get permanent resident status in Canada


If your spouse or common-law partner is applying in the Spouse or Common-law Partner in Canada class, they must already co-habit (live) with you in Canada. A conjugal partner is, in relation to a sponsor, a foreign national residing outside Canada who has been in a conjugal relationship with the sponsor for at least one year.

Who can apply to sponsor spouses, partners, or children?

You can be a sponsor if you are: 

  • at least 18 years of age
  • a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident living in Canada
    • If you are a Canadian citizen living outside Canada, you must show that you plan to live in Canada when your sponsored relative(s) become(s) a permanent resident.
    • You can’t sponsor someone if you are a permanent resident living outside Canada.
  • able to prove that you are not receiving social assistance for reasons other than a disability and
  • can provide for the basic needs of any person you are sponsoring (and in some limited situations, that you meet the low-income cut-off)


Who you can sponsor?

To be eligible for permanent residence, the principal applicant and any dependents must be admissible to Canada

You can sponsor your spouse, common-law partner, or conjugal partner if:

  • they are at least 18 years old
  • your relationship is genuine and wasn’t entered into just to get permanent resident status in Canada


If your spouse or common-law partner is applying in the Spouse or Common-law Partner in Canada class, they must already co-habit (live) with you in Canada. A conjugal partner is, in relation to a sponsor, a foreign national residing outside Canada who has been in a conjugal relationship with the sponsor for at least one year.

You may be able to sponsor your parents and grandparents to become a permanent resident if you’re at least 18 years old and a: 

  • Canadian citizen or
  • A person registered in Canada as an Indian under the Canadian Indian Act or
  • Permanent resident of Canada


If you sponsor your parents and grandparents to come to Canada as a permanent resident, you must:

  • support them financially;
  • make sure they don’t need social assistance from the Government;
  • provide for your own needs and those of your parents and grandparents and their dependents


Determine your eligibility – Super Visa – Another option for your parents and grandparents to temporarily reside in Canada

Canadian Super Visa can be a great option as well if your parents are not really considering moving to Canada or you just missed the deadline or your parents, grandparents were not selected by the authorities.

What is a Super Visa?

It is a multiple entry visa valid for up 10 years, allowing your parents or grandparents to visit Canada in a 10-year time-frame. Keep in mind, it is just a visitor visa with a longer duration of stay.

The super visa lets your parents or grandparents stay in Canada for up to two years at a time. If the intention to stay is six months or less, a visitor visa might be an option as well.

To be eligible for a super visa, you must:

  • be the parent or grandparent of a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident of Canada;
  • have a signed letter from the child or grandchild who invites you to Canada that includes:
    • a promise of financial support for the duration of your visit
    • the list and number of people in the household of this person
    • a copy of this person’s Canadian citizenship or permanent resident document
  • have medical insurance from a Canadian insurance company that is:
    • valid for at least one year from the date of entry
    • at least $100,000 for minimum coverage
  • have proof that medical insurance has been paid

You may be able to sponsor certain relatives to immigrate to Canada under the Family Class if you’re at least 18 years old and a: 

  • Canadian citizen or
  • a person registered in Canada as an Indian under the Canadian Indian Act or
  • permanent resident of Canada


If you sponsor a relative to come to Canada as a permanent resident, you must:

  • support your relative financially when they arrive
  • be able to meet basic needs for yourself and your relative, such as:
    • food
    • shelter
    • clothing
  • make sure your relative doesn’t need social assistance

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