Spousal Sponsorship: Visiting Canada during application processing

Most people immigrating to Canada are looking for a better life not just for themselves but for their families as well. They make a tough decision to leave their loved ones in their home country. It’s not uncommon to find out that many of these immigrants would desire nothing more than being able to bring their loved ones with them. The Canadian immigration understands this and created Family Class Sponsorship programs to ensure families are reunited in Canada. The spousal sponsorship program was established to reunite spouses and common-law partners. For one to qualify as a sponsor, he/she must have permanent residency or citizenship status.

Getting Started

While most people will begin the spousal sponsorship process alone, it’s always advisable to use a qualified partner sponsorship lawyer. This is because the application process can be overwhelming and you need a representative to help you figure out what type to choose, what options you have and what they mean for you and your spouse or common-law partner.

Outland Spousal Sponsorship Applications

Spousal sponsorship applications can be divided into two broad categories: Inland and outland. We’ll take a close look at outland spousal sponsorship applications which basically apply when the person who is seeking to be sponsored resides outside of Canada. One of the questions we get asked a lot is whether someone needs to be in Canada when their application for sponsorship is made. The answer is no. The Canadian immigration system considers terms such as living in Canada or being in Canada as two different things. For instance, your spouse may be in Canada on a visitor visa but this doesn’t mean they are living in Canada.

Your spouse is not required to leave the country in order for your outland application to be approved. However, he/she needs to have a valid visitor visa. Additionally, the officers at the point of entry can deny entry into Canada at their own discretion. Most notably, your spouse’s outland application will be processed at the visa office that is in their home country. Your immigration lawyer will advise on what documents need to be submitted, where and even help in the entire application process.

What if the Application is Denied?

Because outland and inland applications are processed by different offices, they are treated slightly differently. For instance, if your application is denied, you can appeal with the Immigration & Refugee Board of Canada. One option for you if you had submitted an inland application would be to submit an outland sponsorship application. Your lawyer will review your options to immigrate permanently.

Remember that there are implications that you need to be aware of if your spouse visits Canada under a visitor’s visa. First and foremost, your spouse will not be able to be employed legally in Canada. The visitor’s visa can allow you to spend more time with your loved one as the sponsorship application is being processed. To better explore your options for Canadian immigration or spousal sponsorship, talk to an immigration lawyer today.

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