Family class immigration is a significant aspect of Canadian immigration
as one of the objectives of the Canadian Immigration policy is to see that the families
are reunited in Canada. The Canadian government allows citizens and permanent residents
of Canada to sponsor one or more of the following members of the family class, but
it requires that arriving immigrants receive care and support from their sponsors.
- Spouse, common-law partner or conjugal partner.
- Dependent children including children adopted outside of Canada or intended to be
adopted in Canada.
- Parents. Effective November 5, 2011, a temporary pause has been placed on new Family Class sponsorship applications for parents and grandparents. The government is introducing the new “Parent and Grandparent Super Visa,” which will be valid for up to 10 years.
- Grand Parents. Effective November 5, 2011, a temporary pause has been placed on new Family Class sponsorship applications for parents and grandparents. The government is introducing the new “Parent and Grandparent Super Visa,” which will be valid for up to 10 years.
- Brother or sister, nephew or niece or grandchild, if he or she is an orphan, under
18 years of age and not married or in a common-law relationship.
- A relative of the sponsor, regardless of age, who has no member of the family class
who is a Canadian citizen or permanent resident, Indian or whose application for
permanent residence could be sponsored.
Canadian citizens and permanent residents can no longer sponsor their fiancées from
abroad. Instead, common-law partner and conjugal partner can be sponsored. Applications
for permanent residence from spouses, common-law partners, conjugal partners and
dependent children have the highest priority, along with children to be adopted.
The immigration department aims to process 80% of sponsorship and permanent residence
applications submitted on behalf of the high-priority group of spouses, common-law
partners, conjugal partners and dependent children within six months. Other family
class members will no longer receive a processing priority.
Who qualifies as a dependent child?
A dependent child is a child under 22 years of age and not a spouse or common-law
partner on the date when the sponsorship application is received by Immigration
department and not a spouse or common-law partner when the visa is issued, and when
they arrive in Canada. The lock-in of age for dependent children is the day Immigration
department receives a completed sponsorship application and correct processing fees.
Children over the age of 22 may be considered dependent children if they are substantially
dependent on their parents for financial support. This includes full-time students
enrolled in accredited post secondary institutions or children with a physical or
For further information or to discuss your family sponsorship issues, please contact
one of our certified immigration consultants.