Marrying and Sponsoring a spouse from Bangladesh
Have you fallen in love with a Bangladeshi citizen and you wish to marry him or her? The Canadian Family Class Sponsorship program allows for spouses & common-law partner sponsorship, dependent children sponsorship, and parents and grandparents sponsorship. However, the spousal immigration sponsorship process is very complex and is best handled by an immigration lawyer.
Marrying a Bangladeshi Citizen
Marriages between Bangladeshi citizens and foreigners and between foreigners are held under the Special Marriage Act, 1872. The act came into force in April 2012 and since then, all “Certificate of Marriage” from City Corporation and simple affidavits executed before the Magistrate Court and the Notary Public are null and void.
You need a legally registered marriage certificate under the act as proof of marriage. It is only with this certificate that you can apply for a visa, change your maiden name, and get a passport as a married person.
According to the act, the groom must be over 21 while the bride must be over 18 to get married. Before you solemnize the marriage under the act, you must first give notice in writing to the Registrar as per 1st schedule of the act at least 14 days before the registration of the marriage. The marriage is solemnized before the Registrar 3 witnesses who have to sign on the Marriage Certificate and the Declaration.
Before you get married, you must prove to Bangladesh officials that you are not currently married and if you have been before, that you have finalized all divorces. You must prove your identity and you must show that you have not committed a crime in the country. You will provide different documents to prove this, including an Affidavit of Single Status. This can be done through the Bangladeshi Embassy in Canada or in Bangladesh.
Sponsoring a Bangladeshi Spouse
Once you are legally married to a Bangladeshi spouse or partner, you can then file a sponsorship application for permanent resident status. After fulfilling permanent resident obligations, your Bangladeshi spouse can then apply for full Canadian citizenship.
Note that your spouse can visit you while the sponsorship application is being processed by obtaining a visitor visa.
Marrying a Bangladeshi Citizen Outside Bangladesh
Note that the actual marriage ceremony can take place in Bangladesh and outside the country, provided the two parties had the necessary visas to enter the other country at the time of the marriage.
When the marriage ceremony is done outside Bangladesh, you then have to ensure the marriage is recognized in Bangladesh and Canada.
What if you have Dependent Children with your Bangladesh Spouse?
If you have children with your Bangladesh spouse and the children qualify for Canadian permanent resident status, this does not affect the marriage requirements.
How long does the Bangladeshi Marriage Document Last?
Once you are issued with the Bangladeshi Marriage document, it will be valid for 6 months, within which you must have married your fiancé. You must reapply if you do not get married within this period.
At the Law Office of Matthew Jeffery, we specialize in spousal sponsorship immigration and other immigration issues.
You can reach us on 416-944-3267 for a FREE spousal sponsorship assessment.