Spousal Sponsorship

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The intent of the family class program is to facilitate the reunion in Canada of Canadian citizens and permanent residents with their close relatives and family members. 
Canadian citizens and permanent residents can sponsor their spouse (including common-law or conjugal partner), or dependant child to immigrate to Canada as a permanent resident. Both the sponsor and the sponsored person must meet certain requirements to qualify.

Who can sponsor?

A sponsor must be either a Canadian citizen or permanent resident and be at least 18 years old. Temporary residents, including individuals with applications for permanent residence in process, are not eligible to sponsor their family members. A permanent resident or naturalised Canadian citizen who has previously sponsored a spouse or a common law or conjugal partner under section 13(1) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act may not sponsor a new spouse or partner for a five-year period after becoming a permanent resident.

The application process involves two steps:

1. A citizen or permanent resident of Canada must submit an application to sponsor the family member.


2. The sponsored family member, i.e. spouse, common-law or conjugal partner, or dependent children must also apply for permanent residence.

The applications for both sponsorship and permanent residence should be filled out and sent at the same time.
The application submission also involves two stages:

1. The sponsorship application is processed by the Case Processing Centre in Mississauga, Ontario (for family members living outside Canada), or the Case Processing Centre in Vegreville, Alberta (for family members living inside Canada).


2. If you are approved as a sponsor, the permanent residence application is sent to the appropriate Canadian Visa Office that serves the applicant’s country of residence.