Canada Family Sponsorship [and How to Apply]

There are a few countries that value the family relationships of immigrants, and Canada is one of them. Canada prioritizes family unity and prefers to bring families together through the Family Sponsorship program. So, if you plan to come to Canada, and you have a family member here, then this guide is for you.

We will talk about the Family Sponsorship program, which is part of the Canadian immigration policy. It will help Canadian citizens and permanent residents to sponsor their family members to come and live in Canada. We will also discuss the various pathways and requirements for sponsoring family members. Please, pay attention because this guide contains a lot of insights for people like you to come to Canada.

Who Can Sponsor Your Family Program in Canada?

Well, both Canadian citizens and permanent residents can sponsor their family members for immigration here in Canada. Canadian citizens can sponsor loved ones, such as spouses, common-law partners, dependent children, parents, and grandparents.  Also, permanent residents can sponsor their spouses, common-law partners, and dependent children.

Now, in order to be sponsored for a family member under the Family Sponsorship program, your sponsor must meet the minimum age requirement of 18 years old. The age requirement is to make sure your sponsor can fulfill their responsibilities as a sponsor legally.

They have to show their financial support for sponsored family members. So, sponsors must meet the Minimum Necessary Income (MNI) requirement established by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). The MNI is a benchmark for sponsors to meet. The Canadian government established this policy to make sure there is adequate support for sponsored family members without having to depend on social assistance programs.

Sponsors must submit supporting documents, including the following:

  • Tax returns
  • Pay stubs and
  • Employment letters

A sponsor needs this paperwork to prove that their income meets or exceeds the Minimum Necessary Income (MNI) for their family size.

Are You Eligible for Sponsorship?

Okay, you know that Canada’s Family Sponsorship program allows Canadian citizens and permanent residents to bring their family members. Now, while you are coming to be reunited with your family in Canada, these are the main categories of family members who can be sponsored:

  • Partners in a relationship
  • Children who rely on their parents for support
  • Parents
  • Grandparents

Parent and Grandparent Sponsorship Program (PGP) and Requirement

There is a separate program available for parents and grandparents called the Parent and Grandparent Sponsorship Program (PGP). Applying for the PGP is different from other family sponsorship categories as it does not require an invitation. Instead, sponsors who are interested must submit their applications within a specific timeframe each year. As a result of the overwhelming interest, the PGP operates on a lottery system, where a random selection of applicants is chosen to participate in the program.

The requirement for sponsoring parents and grandparents under the PGP is that sponsors are required to provide financial support to their sponsored parent(s) or grandparent(s) for a minimum of 20 years, beginning from the day they obtain permanent residency in Canada. This requirement is designed to ensure that sponsored parents and grandparents receive sufficient financial support to help them integrate into Canadian society.

As for the sponsored family member support, the sponsors are required to meet the Minimum Necessary Income (MNI) requirement. The MNI is determined by considering the combined household income of the sponsor and their cohabiting spouse or common-law partner, if applicable. Sponsors are required to submit the following documents:

  • Tax returns
  • Pay stubs, and
  • Employment letters

It should be proof that their income meets or exceeds the Minimum Necessary Income (MNI) for their family size.

How to Apply for Canada’s Family Sponsorship Program

The process comprises two primary stages: the sponsorship application and the permanent residence application. During the initial phase, the sponsor submits an application to support their family member, showcasing their eligibility and dedication to assisting the sponsored individual. After the sponsorship is approved, the sponsored family member can move forward with their application for permanent residence in Canada.

Throughout the sponsorship application process, sponsors must collect and submit documents to support their application.

These documents typically include proof of identity, proof of relationship with the sponsored family member, and financial documents to demonstrate the ability to support the sponsored individual. There is additional paperwork that will be communicated to you as necessary.

Once this sponsorship application is approved, the sponsored family member can proceed with their permanent residence application. During this stage, you’ll need to collect some additional documents like police certificates, medical exams, and biometrics.

If you are the sponsored person, make sure to carefully and honestly fill out all necessary forms. Interviews may be scheduled during the application process to evaluate the authenticity of the relationship between the sponsor and the sponsored family member. It doesn’t always happen because it depends on the specific circumstances. There is nothing to worry about in the interview. All the immigration officer wants to find out is if you are indeed related to the other person.

Final Thoughts

So, you see, the family sponsorship process in Canada is a reasonable pathway for you to come to Canada now. If you have a family member who is a Canadian citizen, and you are a permanent resident, then use this route to reunite with your loved ones. Canada values family, and you should take advantage to reside here with the people that matter to you.

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