Citizenship and Immigration Canada has changed the rules for spousal sponsorship, adding a 5-year waiting period before a person who is sponsored to come to Canada can sponsor someone else as a spouse, common-law partner, or conjugal partner.
Here is what the new law says, with the changes highlighted in bold:
130. (1) Sponsor – Subject to subsections (2) and (3), a sponsor, for the purpose of sponsoring a foreign national who makes an application for a PR visa as a member of the family class or an application to remain in Canada as a member of the spouse or common-law partner in Canada class under subsection 13(1) of the Act, must be a Canadian citizen or PR who
(a) is at least 18 years of age;
(b) resides in Canada; and
(c) has filed a sponsorship application in respect of a member of the family class or the spouse or common-law partner in Canada class in accordance with section 10.
(2) Sponsor not residing in Canada – A sponsor who is a Canadian citizen and does not reside in Canada may sponsor a foreign national who makes an application referred to in subsection (1) and is the sponsor’s spouse, common-law partner, conjugal partner or dependent child who has no dependent children, if the sponsor will reside in Canada when the foreign national becomes a PR.
(3) Five-year requirement – A sponsor who became a PR after being sponsored as a spouse, common-law partner or conjugal partner under subsection 13(1) of the Act may not sponsor a foreign national referred to in subsection (1) as a spouse, common-law partner or conjugal partner, unless the sponsor became a PR not less than five years immediately preceding the day on which the application referred to in subsection (1) is filed by the sponsor.
This change was made because the government has been concerned about people who get a Canadian or Permanent Resident to sponsor them, and then immediately dump their sponsor (who is still financially responsible for them for 3 years) in order to bring someone else to Canada.
The government is also thinking about making Permanent Residence conditional for 2 years, for sponsored spouses. More about that in our next blog post.
If you need more information about these important changes or have any other immigration questions, please contact us at email@example.com and let our immigration experts help you.