Spousal sponsorship is a popular immigration service. As a Canadian citizen or permanent resident, you have the right to sponsor your spouse or common-law partner to come to Canada and obtain permanent residence in Canada. 

Canadian citizens living outside of Canada may sponsor their spouse, common-law partner or conjugal partner who have not been convicted of an offense causing bodily harm, provided that they are able to demonstrate that they will reside in Canada after their sponsored landing(s).

If you are sponsoring a common-law partner, you must have lived for 12 months in a marriage-like relationship.

Permanent residents residing abroad may not sponsor family from outside Canada. Furthermore, a spouse or common-law partner in Canada may only file an in-Canada application to sponsor their spouse or common-law partner if they are already cohabiting in Canada. Otherwise, the application must be filed through a visa office – these areas of the application process can give rise to confusion and challenges for sponsors. In order to receive the visa in question through this immigration program, the sponsor and sponsored person must prove that their relationship qualifies under one of three categories:

  • Spouse;
  • Common-Law Partner; or
  • Conjugal Partner.