Family Class Immigration allows for families to be reunited and live together in Canada as permanent residents which can lead to citizenship. Family reunification is one of the main objectives of Canada’s Immigration system. Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) views each application with due diligence and high priority is given to family class applications.

There are many different avenues available under the Family Class Sponsorship category. They include:

  • Parent and Grandparent Sponsorship
  • Parent/ Grandparent Super Visa
  • Spouse/ Common Law Partner Sponsorship (for more information on spouse/common law partner sponsorship, click here)
  • Dependent children
  • Other family members (For more information on sponsoring other family members, click here)
Portrait Of Happy Family In Garden

Sponsor Eligibility

  • Must be a Canadian Citizen or Permanent Resident
  • Must be at least 18 years old
  • Be able to provide basic needs for family member(s) (i.e. Provide food, shelter, clothing etc)
  • Meet or exceed the minimum necessary income required to sponsor
  • Must be prepared to financially provide for sponsored family member(s) for at least three years should they receive permanent residence (and show proof of financial means)
  • Must not have sponsored anyone else, in the past, who has requested financial assistance from the government
  • Sponsor cannot be bankrupt, in prison, charged with any serious offence or under a removal order.

Documents Required for Family Class Sponsorship

Documents are a crucial element of the application package. You must be prepared to provide uptodate documents to meet the sponsor eligibility criteria and to attest to your relationship.

Documents for Parent/ Grandparent Sponsorship

In addition to the Citizenship and Immigration application form package, you must also include:

  • Canadian Citizens: Copy of your passport or birth certificate
  • Permanent Residents: permanent resident or submit a Confirmation of Permanent Residence or Record of Landing
  • Copy of marriage certificate
  • Identification of a cosigner if applicable
  • If previously married or in a commonlaw relationship provide:
    • Proof of separation, divorce or annulment
    • Death certificate, if applicable
    • Declaration of severance, if applicable
  • Option C printout from your most recent Notice of Assessment
  • Proof of employment (original employment letter from employer stating duration, hours, pay/salary)
  • Proof of income for the last 12 months (i.e. pay stubs)
  • Any other financial income (i.e. Investments, pension, rental income, special benefits etc)
  • Medical Condition Statement if you have legally adopted the dependent child(s)

Sponsored Parent/ Grandparent Documents

  • Identity and civil status documents
    • Copy of birth certificate, national identity card, marriage certificate, divorce/separation from previous spouse (if applicable), declaration of severance (if applicable), annulment or death certificate or previous partner (if applicable), photocopy of status documents of any close Canadian relatives
  • Children information (dependent children must be 19 or younger)
    • Adoption papers (if applicable), proof of custody of children
  • Travel documents
    • Copy of passport(s) and travel documents, children must have their own passport, if you live in a country different from your nationality provide a copy of your visa
  • Proof of relationship to sponsor
    • Sponsor birth certificate
    • Parent/ Grandparent birth certificate
  • Proof of medical examination
    • CIC provides a list of medical panels in your country to have an upfront medical examination performed
  • Photographs of the spouse/partner anddependentsaccording to the specified photograph guide

Parent/ Grandparent Super Visa

The Super Visa Program allows a parent/ grandparent to be a longterm visitor of Canada. This visa can enable a successful applicant to receive a Super Visa for up to 10 years with multiple entry. This is valid for 2 years at a time with renewal.

To be eligible to apply a parent/ grandparent shall meet the following requirements.

  • Sponsor must meet the minimum income requirements
  • Applicant must purchase 1 full year of health insurance
  • Applicant must complete an immigration medical examination and provide results to CIC
  • The Sponsor must provide written commitment of financial support to CIC
  • If applicable, some applicants may require a Temporary Resident Visa in addition to their Super Visa.

Sponsored Dependent Child Documents

  • Identity and civil status documents
    • Copy of birth certificate, national identity card, marriage certificate, divorce/separation from previous spouse (if applicable), declaration of severance (if applicable), annulment or death certificate or previous partner (if applicable), photocopy of status documents of any close Canadian relatives
  • Children information (dependent children must be 19 or younger)
    • Birth certificate, Adoption papers (if applicable), proof of custody of children
  • Travel documents
    • Copy of passport(s) and travel documents, children must have their own passport, if you live in a country different from your nationality provide a copy of your visa
  • Proof of relationship to sponsor
    • Sponsor birth certificate
    • Parent/ Grandparent birth certificate
  • Proof of medical examination, if applicable.
    • CIC provides a list of medical panels in your country to have an upfront medical examination performed
  • Photographs of the spouse/partner and dependents according to the specified photograph guide

Sponsor other family members

You may be able to sponsor other family members but you must meet the sponsorship requirements.

Under this category you can sponsor brothers, sisters, nephews, nieces, or grandchildren who are orphaned, are under 18 and do not have a spouse or commonlaw partner and their relatives who will accompany them (e.g. Spouse, partner, children). You are able to sponsor one relative of any age or relation only if you do not have any other relatives that you could sponsor under the family class category and you do not have a relative that is a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada.

Any siblings or adult children over the age of 18 cannot be sponsored by you because they are considered financially independent. However, as a relative, you can provide them with extra points under a skilled worker category should they wish to immigrate to Canada.

Common Mistakes

Family Class Sponsorship require lots of information, documents and forms. It is easy to make a mistake and delay your application process by many months or even years.

One of the biggest mistakes that is commonly made is the type of application a sponsor chooses to pursue. When sponsoring a parent/ grandparent, you must choose whether you would like to apply for permanent residence or a super visa.

It is imperative to know whether or not the application is strong with everything in order or if the application will raise issues and concerns in some areas.

Another common mistake is providing Citizenship and Immigration Canada with outofdate documents. This will automatically delay and sometimes even lead to your application being denied. Most documents only have a validity of 36 months. Furthermore, sponsorship forms are constantly being updated, should you submit an application with an old form it will be returned and your process will be delayed.

Another mistake commonly made is not providing proper evidence and proof to attest to stated information. This is a crucial step because Citizenship and Immigration Canada expect every fact that is disclosed to be backed up by tangible evidence. Collecting proof can take a while and sometimes it is hard to obtain but it is imperative to send as much proof as you can with your application to avoid it being delayed or refused. On the forms, the sponsor and applicant must disclose everything that is asked for and not try to withhold information because it can bar them from sponsoring or being sponsored. This includes any information about siblings, children, work places, countries lived it etc.

Another common mistake is sponsoring an adopted child who is not legally adopted in their country of residence. Should this occur, CIC will not regard the relationship as valid. It is important to know who can and cannot be sponsored.

These are only a few of the many mistakes that can be made while applying for Family Class Sponsorship. Be sure to double check everything.

How we can help

At A. Princewill Law Firm we understand the importance of being with your family members and would like to help you achieve it in an expeditious and accurate manner. With our many years of experience we know how to strengthen your application and what Citizenship and Immigration Canada are looking for. We can effectively advise and assist you with your forms and documents. We also monitor your application even after it is submitted. You will dramatically notice a difference when trying to apply on your own and applying with our services.

Let us help you determine your eligibility by filling out our free online assessment. One of our skilled staff members will be able to assess and advise you on your situation.