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Spouse or Common Law

Spouse or Common Law

Spouse or Common Law

Canada places a lot of importance on ensuring the togetherness of families. Even its immigration laws strive to keep families together. Applications by immigrants to be with family members in the country are accorded high priority by the authorities.

You must meet the standard eligibility requirements to be able to reunite with your spouse or common-law partner. You must establish through documentation that they are either married or common-law partners. Conjugal partners are also recognized as eligible for immigration by the Canadian government.

Spouses:  The applicants must be spouses through a legally recognized marriage in Canada. Proxy marriages are no longer recognized.

Common-law partners: These couples must prove they have shared a common residence and cohabited in a relationship akin to a marriage for a minimum of 12 consecutive months.

Conjugal partners: They are married or common-law partners but are unable to live together due to circumstances beyond their control. The reasons could be immigration barriers, sexual orientation issues, religious reasons, and others. Foreign nationals are also not allowed to marry their sponsor and become a spouse. Couples applying for immigration must satisfy all legal aspects of a married couple or a common-law couple. They must be in a legal and genuine relationship for a minimum of one year.

The Obligations of a Sponsor

As a sponsor, you are required to provide an undertaking that you will be responsible for the financial support of your partner and help meet their basic needs such as:

  • Food, shelter, clothing, and other basic mandatory things
  • Health care needs are not covered by the country’s public health services

As a sponsor, you must also make sure the people you sponsor won’t have to depend on the government for financial help. You will have to pay back any social assistance they receive when you are legally responsible for their finances and well-being. You can’t sponsor anyone else until you have paid back the entire amount.

You are responsible for supporting the spouse/partner for the period of undertaking, even if there is a change in the situation. The undertaking cannot be canceled, even if:

  • The sponsored person becomes a Canadian citizen
  • Your relationship with the person breaks down, leading to divorce/separation
  • Either of you moves to another country/province
  • You run into troubled times financially

Can You Change Your Mind About the Undertaking After Approval

If you want to change your mind about sponsoring your spouse or partner, you must write to the IRCC using the IRCC Web Form. The withdrawal can happen only if the IRCC approves it.

What Is the Length of Undertaking?

Your responsibilities as a sponsor start as soon as the undertaking is approved. The length of the undertaking is three years from the day the sponsored person becomes a permanent resident.

Eligibility to Become a Sponsor

You can become a sponsor

  • You are at least 18 years old
  • You are a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident of Canada and living in the country
  • You are financially capable of providing the basic needs of your spouse/partner and their dependent child/children

You are not eligible to sponsor if you were convicted of a serious and violent crime against a relative or threatened to commit any offense. The eligibility will depend on the nature of the offense and the time lapse since it was committed.

You are also not eligible to sponsor if any family members received social welfare or assistance during a previous sponsorship and there is a debt from that payment. An immigration loan default, support payment obligations, and a performance bond are all situations that can prevent you from sponsoring a spouse or a partner.

Application Process

There are two programs through which you can apply to sponsor your spouse or common-law partner

  • Spouse or Common-Law Partner in Canada Class
  • Spouse or Common-Law Partner Outside Canada Family Class

The permanent residence process through spousal sponsorship is a five-step process:

  1. Submission of the completed application form
  2. Eligibility assessment of the sponsor
  3. Assessing the genuineness of the relationship and reviewing the permanent residence application
  4. Confirming the permanent residence documents
  5. Landing process

If you are unsure how to go about the sponsorship process, contact ASI Immigration. As one of the trusted immigration consultancy in Canada with many years of experience, you can rely on us to provide quality services in all aspects of immigration processes. If you face any problems in the sponsoring process of your spouse or common-law partner, we can help. Contact us now with all the relevant details to get the right guidance for your problems.

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