Sponsorship of Family and Partners
A Canadian citizen or permanent resident may sponsor her or his spouse, common-law partner or conjugal partner, or dependent children to come to Canada as permanent residents.
In order to be eligible to sponsor a family member, the potential sponsor must be at least 18 years of age, living in Canada, and meet the minimum income requirements.
In order to sponsor a relative, the sponsor enters into an agreement with the government of Canada, in which they agree to support the relative for a period of three years for spouses, conjugal or common law partners, and ten years for other relatives.
The following are types of relatives that may be sponsored under the family class:
NOTE: that there is no requirement to show a minimum level of income to sponsor a spouse, common-law partner, conjugal partner, or child; the income requirement only applies to other types of sponsored relatives.
The types of relatives who may be sponsored under the family class include the following:
In-land Spousal Sponsorship
Most often, applications will be processed while the sponsor is in Canada, and the person they are sponsoring waits in their home country until the visa is approved. However, it is possible to sponsor a spouse while in Canada, granted that the spouse has legal status in Canada (study, visitor or work permit) or, at minimum is not subject to a removal order.
Sponsorship by a Canadian Citizen Living Abroad
In some cases an application to sponsor a spouse can also take place while the sponsor is outside of Canada. In this case, the sponsor and spouse must prove their intention to reside in Canada after approval of the application.