Family Sponsorship Visa

Canada welcomes relatives of its permanent residents and citizens wishing to join their family members. In the context of visas and immigration, such movements of people are sometimes called ‘family reunification’.

Canadian residents can sponsor certain relatives to come to Canada providing that they are at least 18 and either:

Who can apply for a Family Sponsorship Visa?

You can apply for a Family Sponsorship Visa if you have an eligible family member already in Canada who can act as your sponsor. This family member should be either:

  • your child or grandchild
  • your spouse, common-law or conjugal partner
  • a sibling, aunt, uncle or grandparent (if you have been orphaned)
  • another blood or adoptive relative, if there is nobody else you can be sponsored by and nobody else that they might be eligible to sponsor

Your sponsor must be able to guarantee that they can provide you with any necessary financial assistance when you arrive, and to meet both your and their basic needs (food, clothing, shelter). You must not be intending to rely upon social assistance (welfare benefits) when you arrive in Canada.

Sponsors may have to make a written commitment to supporting their relative for a period of up to 20 years, depending on how old they are and how they are related.

If you are looking to join your child or grandchild in Canada, you may want to consider applying for the dedicated super visa for parents and grandparents.

Is there a minimum income requirement to sponsor a Family Sponsorship Visa?

Sponsors of a parent or grandparent must demonstrate that they have sufficient income to support everyone in their family that they will be financially responsible for, including themselves (their ‘family size’). The table below shows the minimum income sponsors must have earned in the previous three years (if applying in 2024).

Total number of people you’ll be responsible for 2023 2022 2021
2 CAD $44,530 CAD $43,082 CAD $32,898
3 CAD $54,743 CAD $52,965 CAD $40,444
4 CAD $66,466 CAD $64,306 CAD $49,106
5 CAD $75,384 CAD $72,935 CAD $55,694
6 CAD $85,020 CAD $82,259 CAD $62,814
7 CAD $94,658 CAD $91,582 CAD $69,934
If more than 7 people, for each additional person, add: CAD $9,636 CAD $9,324 CAD $7,120

There is usually no minimum income requirement for individuals intending to sponsor either their spouse, partner or dependent child. The exception to this is if they intend to sponsor a child who has their own dependent children, or they intend to sponsor a spouse or partner who has a dependent child with their own dependent children.

What does a Family Sponsorship Visa offer?

Successful applicants for a Family Sponsorship Visa will be granted permanent resident status in Canada. Permanent residence status allows holders:

  • live, work and study in Canada
  • access to most social benefits, including public healthcare coverage
  • a pathway to Canadian citizenship

Individuals applying as the spouse, common-law partner, conjugal partner or accompanying dependent child of their sponsor are permitted to apply for an open work permit, providing they are already living in Canada with that sponsor. If granted, an open work permit will allow them to work in Canada while they await the outcome of their application.

How do I apply for a Family Sponsorship Visa?

The exact process for applying for a Family Sponsorship Visa varies depending on the relationship between the sponsor and the applicant.

Individuals seeking to sponsored a parent or grandparent can only apply to sponsor during designated application windows, and must be invited apply by Canadian authorities. To be eligible to receive an invitiation to apply, they must first submit an ‘interest to sponsor’ form.

If the individual being sponsored is their sponsor’s spouse, partner, child or other relative, they can apply at the same time as each other.

Applications for all Family Sponsorship Visas must be submitted online. Application fees start at CAD $1205 for an adult and from CAD $170 for a child. There may also be further costs for providing biometric data (e.g. fingerprints, photographs) and additional supporting documentation such as police certificates or health checks.

Processing times typically range from 10 months for partners and dependent children, to 24 months for parents and grandparents.

Kunal Thakur

Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant R#519955

Kunal Thakur is a passionate Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant (RCIC) with close to two decades of immigration experience, during which he has successfully guided thousands of people on their immigration journey. He is quick in responding to client queries and constantly strives to give his clients the best possible advice. Kunal brings immense value to our team with his talks and discourses on immigration. When not in front of his laptop reading and analysing client cases, he enjoys spending his spare time exploring new places and trying new things. Kunal is currently based in Adelaide, Australia. You can book a time with him here.

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