Spouse / Common-law partner

The objective of the Family Class of immigration is to reunite close family members in Canada.

The Family Class allows Canadian citizens and permanent residents to sponsor their dependent children, parents and grandparents, and spouse or common-law/conjugal partner. Canada strongly supports keeping families together whenever possible. As such, the processing of Family Class applications is given the highest priority at Canadian Visa Offices.

The Spousal Sponsorship Category

The Spousal Sponsorship program is a subsection of the Family Class immigration category. Under this program, a Canadian citizen or permanent resident may sponsor a spouse or common-law partner for Canadian permanent residence.

Both the Canadian citizen or permanent resident (also called the ‘sponsor’) and the foreign national (the ‘sponsored person’) must be approved by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) in order for the sponsored person to receive a visa.

 

Requirements for the Sponsor:

  • The sponsor must be at least 18 years of age;
  • The sponsor must be a Canadian permanent resident living in Canada or a Canadian citizen;
  • The sponsor cannot be in prison, bankrupt, under a removal order (if a permanent resident) or charged with a serious offence; and
  • The sponsor cannot have been sponsored to Canada as a spouse within the last 5 years.

Requirements for the Sponsored Person:

  • The sponsored person must be at least 16 years of age and
  • The sponsored person must not be too closely related by blood to the sponsor.

Requirements for the nature of the relationship:

  • The applicant must prove that the relationship between the sponsor and the sponsored person qualifies.

Application process: