The Canadian immigration laws assign priority to ensuring that families are united in Canada. Accordingly, immigration laws allow Canadian citizens Permanent Residents to sponsor their spouse or partner. However, there are three (3) main categories of partnership relations are defined by the Canadian laws:
- Spouse: A legal marriage partner. This term includes both opposite- and same-sex relationships.
- Common Law Partner: A person who has been living with another person in a conjugal relationship for at least one year continuously. The term refers to opposite-sex and same-sex relationships.
- Conjugal Partner: A person outside Canada who has had a binding relationship with a sponsor for at least one year but could not live with their partner. The term refers to both opposite-sex and same-sex relationships.
If you wish to sponsor your Spouse / Partner, you must satisfy the all of the below requirements:
- A Citizen or Permanent Resident of Canada and at least 18 years of age.
- Sign an agreement with the government as a sponsor confirming that you are financially responsible for the sponsored person and any other dependents.
- Show that the marriage is legal in either Canada or under the laws of the foreign jurisdiction where it happened.
- For those who are Conjugal or Common Law Partners, they must show evidence of a dependent relationship for at least one year.
Dependent Child Sponsorship
Citizens and Permanent Residents of Canada wishing to sponsor their dependent children; the children of their spouse/partner; or children that are adopted must sign an agreement with the government confirming their willingness to be financially responsible for the sponsored dependent child for 10 years or until the child becomes 22 years old. In addition, they must meet the financial obligations set by the Canadian government.