The Conditional Permanent Residence Provision No Longer Holds
When you sponsor a spouse or common-law partner into Canada, the law previously required the sponsored person to complete a 2-year period of conditional permanent resident status. However, the provision that was passed by the conservative government of Canada in 2012, has since been removed. For almost four and a half years, sponsored spouses and common-law partners were bound by law to live with their sponsors for at least 2 years after obtaining permanent residence. This provision applied to spouses and common law partners who did not have any children. Those who failed to meet this condition risked losing their status and facing deportation.
Why the conditional permanent residence provision was put in place
The conditional permanent residence provision was put in place to help reduce the number of “marriages of convenience”. The provision was intended to deter people from getting into dishonest relationships in order to move into Canada. However, the government reported that even after the provision was put in place, cases of marriage fraud still existed. While many of the sponsorship applications are genuine and made in good faith, the conditional permanent residence was only put in place to eradicate cases of marriage fraud. Even after passing this provision, the government noted that it still upholds its commitment on reuniting families and combating cases of gender violence.
The changes effected from April 28th 2017
Sponsored spouses and common law partners will no longer be bound by the conditional permanent residence. This provision will no longer apply to anyone. Anyone who received confirmation of permanent resident after April 18th, 2017 will no longer be required to cohabit in a conjugal relationship with their spouse or common law partner for two years after the day in which they were granted permanent resident status. Spouses and common law partners who were under investigation for not fulfilling the provision will no longer be under investigation.
Sponsoring a spouse or common law partner
The Canadian government allows sponsorship of a common-law partner. You also need to have lived together in a conjugal relationship for at least one year in order to sponsor the person as your common-law partner. This applies because spousal sponsorship is classified under family class immigration and is part of the efforts by the Canadian government to unite families. Both the sponsor and the sponsored person must assessed by IRCC before the sponsored person can be granted a visa.
Once the application for family sponsorship is approved, the sponsored person will be given an immigrant visa and required to come to Canada before the visa expires. Working with a Canadian based immigration lawyer who helps to facilitate the application process can save you both time and trouble in the complicated family sponsorship process.