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Family Sponsorship

Canadian citizens and permanent residents may apply to sponsor their family memberships abroad to join them in Canada.


Spouse, Common-Law or Conjugal Partners and Dependent Children Abroad


Canadian citizens and permanent residents are allowed sponsor their spouses, common-law or conjugal partners and dependent children who live abroad for permanent residence in Canada. The sponsor must meet an eligibility test and demonstrate that they are willing and able to support their family members upon arrival in Canada.


Spousal Sponsorship Applications – These applications have the highest priority in terms of processing times. If refused, there is a right of appeal at the Immigration Appeal Division of the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada.


Common-Law Partners – In order to qualify as "common-law", a couple must establish that they have lived together in a conjugal relationship for at least one year in a continuous, uninterrupted 12-month period.


Conjugal Partners - This category is for partners (either same-sex or opposite-sex), who, for exceptional circumstances beyond their control, do not qualify as common-law partners or spouses.

Spouse, Common-Law and Dependent Children In-Canada


Processing times for spouses in Canada is generally longer. They are unable to work (unless already on a work permit) until a provisional acceptance of the application is grated. If the application is refused, there is no right of appeal to the Immigration Appeal Division.

Parents and Grandparents


You may be able to sponsor your parent or grandparent to become a permanent resident of Canada under the Family Class if you are at least 18 years old and a Canadian citizen; a person registered in Canada as an Indian under the Indian Act; or a permanent resident of Canada. If you sponsor your parent or grandparent to come to Canada as a permanent resident, you must: support them financially when they arrive; make sure they do not require social assistance from the government; and provide for your own essential needs and those of your parent or grandparent. Parents and grandparents are also eligible for supervisas.

Other Eligible Family Members Under the Family Class

  • Sponsor's half-siblings or step-siblings who are orphaned
  • Children of the sponsor's step-siblings who are orphaned
  • Grandchild of the sponsor who is orphaned
  • A child under 18 whom the sponsor intends to adopt in Canada (subject to conditions)


A relative of the sponsor, regardless of age, if the sponsor does not have a spouse, a common-law partner, a conjugal partner, a child, a mother or father, a relative who is a child of that mother or father, a relative who is a child of a child of that mother or father, a mother or father of that mother or father or a relative who is a child of the mother or father of that mother or father.