Spousal sponsorship

A Canadian Citizen or Canadian permanent resident can sponsor a spouse when they are legally married in Canada or abroad. Spousal sponsorship is also possible if a Canadian Citizen or Canadian permanent resident wants to sponsor a spouse if they have been in a "marriage-like" relationship where they have lived together for at least a year and support each other and share intimacy in the same way that would be expected of married couples. This is called a common law relationship. Under immigration law in Canada,  one year of living together is a requirement, but there may be some exceptions if one of you have to be away for periods of time to work or for other absolutely necessary reasons.

There is also the conjugal relationship category. This is where there is a marriage like relationship where you are not able to live together because the non-Canadian citizen / Canadian permanent resident person in the relationship is still in the country of origin or wherever that person currently lives, and has not yet been able to come to Canada.

In the case of all three categories, marriage, common law or conjugal, there may be a lot of explaining required to satisfy the immigration officer who reviews your application. Such examples may include

  • Important family members were not able to attend your marriage;

  • There were some complications in proper documentation to confirm the end of a previous marriage;

  • There were breaks in your common law relationship, but you were still together for more than a year overall;

  • One of you had to be away to work for periods of time;

  • The spouse you want to sponsor has a history of immigration problems in Canada, such as overstaying on temporary permits

  • The spouse you want to sponsor has previous criminal convictions in Canada or another country;

  • You are not sure that you have the financial support to fulfill your sponsorship agreement.

There are many other possible  situations that may make your spousal sponsorship application complicated. Very few couples will have a "perfect" situation where there are no details that require at least some legal explaining or justification to make sure that each of you (the sponsor and the one being sponsored) qualify and that the relationship qualifies. Getting legal advice and representation from a lawyer is important to put your best foot forward, and are less likely to end up appealing a failed sponsorship. If your sponsorship application is rejected the first time, further applications or appeals become more difficult because issues in the initial raised by an immigration officer in the initial application have to be explained and dealt with.

 Contact Asaf to book an appointment. A consultation is free for up to 30 minutes.