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Frank Goldberg


by Frank Goldberg, September 9, 2019

Canada allows Spousal Sponsorships for married, common-law and conjugal partners, including same sex partners.  An eligible common-law partnership requires a couple to live together for at least one year in a conjugal relationship.

The application process effectively involves two applicants - the “Sponsor” who is applying to sponsor the “Sponsored Person” (the Sponsoree) who is applying for Permanent Residence.  Both persons require approval by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).

An eligible Sponsor must be over 18, and a Canadian citizen or a Canadian Permanent Resident living in Canada.   There is no minimum income requirement for Sponsors.

The Sponsoree is eligible if they are over 16 and not related to the sponsor by blood.

A prospective Sponsor is ineligible for spousal sponsorship if they are or have been subject to an Immigration Removal Order, charged with a serious criminal offense, bankrupt or on social assistance, previously sponsored another person within the last    3 years, or have they, themselves, been sponsored within the last 5 years.

The IRCC scrutinizes the genuineness of each and every relationship to ensure that the Applicants are not committing marriage and/or immigration fraud by misrepresenting information.  Misrepresentation can result in being banned from Canada for up to 5 years.

ubmitting a Spousal Sponsorship application can be quite intrusive, and complex because the authenticity of the relationship can only be demonstrated in the present, notwithstanding that the IRCC will be evaluating the relationship based on the applicants’ historic behavior.

Both applicants must prove to IRCC that the relationship is qualified, genuine and was not entered into primarily for immigration purposes. This requires evidence of emotional ties and intimacyfinancial integration and time spent together. 

A critical component of the Spousal Application is the covering letter which should clearly demonstrate how the applicants are in compliance with IRCC rules and regulations.

There is seldom a second chance to present additional documents.

Applicants need to choose the appropriate type of Spousal Sponsorship application.

?Outland Sponsorships are applicable to Sponsorees living outside Canada. These applications are processed at overseas visa offices, allow the Sponsoree to travel in and out of Canada throughout the application process, and in the event of an application rejection, may be appealed.

Inland Sponsorships apply to a Sponsoree who has temporary status in Canada (either as a worker, student, or visitor).  This application is processed in Canada, and although it restricts the Sponsoree’s travel during processing, may allow for the Sponsoree to legally work in Canada. In the event of refusal, Inland applications may not be appealed (and re-submissions, although allowed, are seldom successful).

In the event that either type of application is refused, the Sponsoree is required to leave Canada immediately at the expiration of their temporary visa.

Most important, prior to formulating their final decision, IRCC often requests interviews with both Applicants. This interview is often the most critical part of IRCC’s decision process.

Applicants are well advised to seek advice and assistance in preparation for this interview.

Canadian immigration is a complex process.

Success requires the development and implementation of a practical Action Plan, timely submission of the right application documents, and precise attention to detail.  This reduces the probability of wasting time and money, being rejected, and/or being banned from Canada.

Prospective applicants are advised to carefully develop a proactive Spousal Sponsorship Action Plan that best fits their particular situation.

Frank Goldberg CPA,CA , RCIC
CdnVISA Immigration Consultants  204-318-2347 x1 ,  [email protected] 






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