Family Sponsorship

One of the objectives of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act is “to see that families are reunited in Canada”. Due to which about 25 to 30 percent of all the newcomers to Canada immigrate under Family Reunification programs. There can be several different ways of family reunion, some of them are as listed below:

A typical Family Reunification application consists of two sides,

  • the sponsor
  • the applicant and their dependent family members


Your spouse, common-law partner, conjugal partner or dependent children may apply to obtain Permanent Resident status in Canada. Depending on who you sponsor, different eligibility criteria have to be met.

If you meet the criteria under family sponsorship, you will be required to:

  • Support your family members financially
  • Ensure that your family members do not need social assistance from the government

Who is the Sponsor?


  • • Must be at least 18 years of age


  • • Canadian Citizen
  • • Permanent Resident
  • • Person registered in Canada as Indian under the Indian Act



  • • Show that you can provide for the basic needs of the person you want to sponsor
  • • Meets the good character requirements
  • • Files a sponsorship application

There are many limitations and exceptions to most of the conditions mentioned above.

Who is the Applicant?

The applicant is the person who wants to immigrate to Canada. This person could be any of the following in relation to the sponsor.


  • • Father, mother, grandparents and/or their spouses and dependent children’s
  • • Father, mother, grandparents and/or their spouses and dependent children’s


  • • Legally married to you
  • • Must be 18 years old


  • • Is not legally married to you
  • • Must be 18 years old
  • • Have been living together for at least 12 consecutive months prior to the date of application


  • • Is not legally married to you
  • • Must be 18 years old
  • • Has been in a relationship with you for at least one year
  • • Lives outside Canada
  • • Cannot live with you in their country of residence or marry you because of significant legal and immigration reasons


  • • Child is not married or in a common law relationship
  • • Child is under 22 years of age(some exceptions apply)


  • • Brother, sister, nephew, niece, or grandchild
  • • Must be under 18 years of age
  • • Orphaned( no other relative alive)
  • • A Spouse, common-law partner, or conjugal partner who is at least 18
  • • A father or mother of sponsor
  • • A grandfather or grandmother of sponsor
  • • A dependent child of sponsor (i.e. under 22 years old and not married –)
  • • A brother, sister, nephew, niece, or grandchild who is under 18 years old and orphaned
  • • An adopted child who is under 18 years old
  • • Some other family members under special circumstances
  • • A clear medical, criminal and back

The definition of “a family member” under the immigration law of Canada could be different from the definition of a family member under other laws of the country. Circumstances could affect the eligibility of family members.

Who is a Dependent Family Member?

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  • • Their spouse, conjugal partner or common-law partner
  • • Their dependent children
  • • Their spouse, conjugal partner or common-law partner’s dependent children
  • • Their adopted dependent children

Dependent family members, may or may not accompany the applicant.

In other words, they may choose not to immigrate to Canada.

If you wish to visit or immigrate to Canada or if you have encountered any issues with the immigration department, you should fill out our free assessment form or book a consultation session to assess your potential opportunities or offer you immigration, visa, or citizenship advice. There might be an initial consultation fees applicable. Being a certified Immigration Consultants in Canada, I can help you sponsor your family to come to Canada. You may sponsor your spouse, common-law or conjugal partner, dependent children or your parents and grand parents to come to Canada permanently. I will complete your entire Family sponsorship application package for you, handle all correspondence with Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) and keep you informed throughout the entire process. Family sponsorship is one of the most popular categories in Canada under which to obtain Permanent Resident status.


Information provided in this article is only as of a general ground. It could be no longer valid. It does not give legal advice, nor should you rely on it as legal advice. If you have specific legal questions, you should consult a Regulated Canadian immigration consultant or lawyer. If you are looking for immigration advice, you should book an appointment at your earliest convenience.