How to Sponsor Your Spouse or Child to Canada 2024

How to Sponsor Your Spouse or Child to Canada 2024

How to Sponsor Your Spouse or Child to Canada 2024: Canada has become a prime destination for migrants and international students seeking better work-life opportunities, business prospects, security, excellent educational support, and leisure. For those looking to reunite with their loved ones upon migration, the Canada Family Sponsor pathway offers a way to bring their marital partner, spouse, or children to Canada for Canadian permanent residence. This article will delve into the details of this sponsorship process, highlighting the requirements and procedures involved.

Bringing Your Loved Ones to Canada

Whether your loved ones are already in Canada on a valid temporary visa or currently reside in another country, the Canada Family Sponsor pathway can make their Canadian dreams come true. It is crucial to note that applicants residing in Canada may be eligible for open work permits, granting them the opportunity to work and support their partners financially during the sponsorship process.

Understanding the Categories

To comprehend the sponsorship process better, it is essential to understand the different categories and requirements. The following categories apply:

  1. Spouse: A spouse has a legally valid marriage recognized by Canadian law and the country of origin.
  2. Conjugal partner: A conjugal relationship occurs when married couples or common-law partners have been together for at least 12 months but cannot live together for various reasons such as sexual orientation, religious barriers, immigration constraints, or marital status complications.
  3. Common-law partner: To qualify as a common-law partner, the couple must have cohabitated uninterruptedly in a conjugal relationship for at least one year.

Defining a Dependent Child

A dependent child may include the sponsor’s child, the child of the sponsor’s spouse, or a common-law partner under the age of 22 with no dependents. In some instances, children over the age of 22 can be considered dependents if they rely on their parents for financial support or have physical or mental conditions preventing self-sufficiency. Furthermore, if a dependent child has a dependent child, the sponsor must demonstrate their financial capacity, considering a low-income cut-off.

Eligibility to Sponsor

To sponsor a family member, the sponsor must be a Canadian citizen over 18 or an adult Canadian permanent resident. Moreover, the sponsors must reside in Canada unless they currently reside abroad and intend to relocate to Canada once their sponsored applicants have arrived.

Individuals Ineligible to Sponsor

Some circumstances may render an individual ineligible to sponsor. These include being subject to a removal order, failing to meet child support obligations, sponsoring a previous spouse or partner who has not been a permanent resident for over three years, being incarcerated, failing to comply with previous sponsorship terms, receiving social assistance (excluding disability), undergoing bankruptcy proceedings, becoming a permanent resident less than five years ago through sponsorship, and having convictions or prior offences regarding violent or sexual acts towards family members or non-payment/non-compliance of immigration loans.

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Fees and Requirements

Sponsors must submit sponsorship and processing fees with their Family Class applications. Additionally, non-dependent applicants are required to pay a “Right of Permanent Residence Fee,” which will be refunded if the application is refused or withdrawn.

The fee structure for sponsoring different family members is as follows:

1. Spouse, partner, or relative aged 22 or older:

    • Sponsorship fee: $75
    • Processing fee: $475
    • Right of permanent residence fee: $490

2. Relative under the age of 22 who is not a dependent child:

    • Sponsorship fee: $75
    • Processing fee: $75
    • Right of permanent residence fee: $490

3. Dependent child, adopted child, or orphaned relative:

    • Sponsorship fee: $75
    • Processing fee: $75

Spousal Open Work Permit

A spousal open work permit grants sponsored applicants the right to work in Canada while their sponsorship application is being processed. This permit is not limited to registered marriages; Canada recognizes common-law relationships, provided they have been living together for at least one year.

Income Requirement for Canadian Family Sponsorship:

Before sponsoring an applicant to Canada, there are income requirements to meet, such as:

  • Minimum Necessary Income (MNI) for the size of the family unit.
  • Providing Notices of Assessment (NOA) issued by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) to prove meeting the MNI for three consecutive years.

Obligations and Agreements:

Sponsors are required to sign an undertaking to financially support their sponsored family members’ basic needs. The duration of the sponsorship agreement differs based on the family member being sponsored:

  • Dependent child: 10 years or until the child reaches the age of 22 (whichever comes first); 3 years for dependent children over the age of 22.
  • Spouse, common-law, or conjugal partner: 3 years.
  • Parent or grandparent: 20 years.

It is important to note that the sponsorship agreement remains in effect even if the sponsored person becomes a citizen, moves away from Canada, divorces, or separates from the sponsor.

Additional Requirements and Options:

Sponsored family members must undergo a medical examination, and all individuals aged 18 and above must provide police certificates from all countries of residence. Moreover, the province of Quebec has additional sponsorship criteria that must be fulfilled.

Direct application through the Family Class Sponsorship program is necessary for individuals interested in adopting a child. Adoption processes fall under the purview of Canadian provinces and territories, so it is advisable to consult the relevant province/territory’s website before proceeding.

Frequently Asked Questions:

The article concludes by addressing common questions regarding the sponsorship process, including the absence of deadlines for sponsoring a spouse or child, the limitations on sponsoring siblings, and the eligibility to sponsor fiancés or partners.


Sponsoring your spouse or child in Canada under the Family Class Sponsorship program requires understanding various categories, eligibility criteria, obligations, fees, and additional requirements. Following the outlined guidelines and procedures, you can navigate the process successfully, ensuring your loved ones join you in Canada for a brighter future.

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