Family reunion

This category is for people who can be sponsored by a sponsor.

Sponsorship is an immigration program in which a Canadian citizen or permanent resident (named the sponsor or guarantor) vouches for a family reunification member in order to allow him/her to immigrate to Canada without having to meet the usual selection criteria.

The sponsor can sponsor their spouse, common-law partner or conjugal partner, their dependent children, parents and grandparents, sisters, brothers, nephews and nieces, grandchildren under the age of 18, who are both orphans and unmarried and without common-law partners.

Likewise, the sponsor can sponsor the child he intends to adopt abroad or in Canada as well as a relative. In the latter case, the respondent must not have any family members who are Canadian citizens, permanent residents or Indians.

Respondent quality

Will be able to sponsor a family class member any Canadian citizen or permanent resident over eighteen (18) years of age with Canada as their only country of residence or, failing that, intend to return to live there.

The respondent can not be detained or under an immigration investigation. He must be free or have obtain his/her pardon for committing any offenses of a serious sexual nature or causing injury to a relative. He can not have breached obligations arising from a previous sponsorship undertaking, failed to meet a court-ordered support obligation or failed to pay fees in connection with an immigration file. The undischarged bankrupt, the welfare recipient – except for disability reasons, can not be a sponsor.

And except for his spouse and children, the sponsor must have the necessary financial means.

Groups of individuals who can individually meet these criteria may become sponsors in a group sponsorship.

Spouse, common-law partner or conjugal partner

The Canadian laws recognize spouses who are married, common-law partners of the same sex or not. The Immigration and Refugee Protection Act also recognizes conjugal partners.

In the latter case, it is a foreign national residing outside Canada who has been in a conjugal relationship with a sponsor for at least one (1) year.

For example, members of the LGBTQA community may apply for permanent residence in Canada in the possible immigration categories, subject to demonstrating the length of the existing relationship between common-law or conjugal partners, unless to be married according to the national laws of the country of residence. All are part of family reunification and may apply for permanent residence in Canada under the sponsorship rules.

In the case of spouses and common-law partners, the new law allows spouses who are in Canada and have legal status to apply for immigration within the country.

Adoption

Underage children who are adopted before the age of eighteen (18) can immediately apply for Canadian citizenship through a citizenship application, if at least one parent is a Canadian citizen. Otherwise, permanent residents will first have to sponsor the child to obtain permanent residence and then citizenship may be requested. Adoption laws vary by province or territory, but also by the country of origin of the adopted child.

You will therefore have to comply with the adoption laws of the country of origin of the child, but also abide by the laws of your province or territory of residence. In both cases, the adoption must have created a new relationship between the adoptee and the adopter and not have been made for the purpose of obtaining a benefit under Canadian law.

The sponsorship process can begin as soon as the decision is made to adopt. You will have to respect one of two processes, preferably depending on your status in Canada: the citizenship adoption process for adopters who are already citizens of Canada or the sponsorship process under the Immigration Act for permanent residents of Canada.

You will need to familiarize yourself with all relevant legal requirements before starting the adoption process. The Hague Convention regulates intercountry adoption. Before starting the adoption process, consult a lawyer to know the regulation.

In Arab-Muslim countries, the child under a Kafala order is subject to a trusteeship system. It is not a system that breaks the ties with the biological parents and can not, therefore, be adopted according to the rules in force in Canada. It is in the interest of those considering intercountry adoption to consult a lawyer before sending their application.

Financial commitment

As part of the sponsorship, the Canadian sponsor is required to sign undertaking. Subject to the applicable financial conditions, the signed undertaking is primarily a formal contract between the government and the permanent resident or Canadian citizen to allow one or more family members to come to Canada.

Financial conditions

The sponsor residing in Quebec is subject to the financial conditions set by the province, while for the sponsor residing elsewhere in Canada, the conditions are set by the federal government.

Obligations of the undertaking

Under the signed undertaking, the resident or Canadian citizen undertakes to assist the beneficiary of the undertaking (the foreigner) to integrate into society by providing board and lodging, as required.

In addition, he is required to reimburse any provincial government amounts received as a last resort aid by the family members receiving the benefit. The respondent signs a contract with the government in which he undertakes to provide financial support for the sponsored person for a period of three (3), five (5), ten (10) or even twenty (20) years. This contract is valid everywhere in Canada. Except in case of marriage annulment, the undertaking remains valid despite legal separation or divorce.

Cancellation of the commitment in Quebec

An undertaking lapses if the foreign national in favor of whom it is subscribed does not obtain a Québec Selection Certificate within twenty-four (24) months of the signing of the undertaking, if the signatory no longer satisfies the requirements set or if the foreign national does not receive permanent residence in Canada.

The signatory may sometimes withdraw his commitment before or after issuing a Quebec Selection Certificate, but cannot do so after the issuance of the permanent residence visa.

Judicial Remedies

When the refusal of sponsorship by Quebec is based on financial reasons, the refusal decision may be brought before the Administrative Tribunal of Quebec (TAQ). Elsewhere in Canada, for the same reasons for refusal or for any other refusal by the visa officer involving family ties, the person must apply to the Appeal Division of the Immigration and Refugee Board.