Who can sponsor me in Canada?

If you are considering immigrating to Canada, you may be wondering who can sponsor you. Canadian sponsorship programs allow eligible individuals to sponsor their family members, spouses, common-law partners, conjugal partners, dependent children, parents, and grandparents to come and live in Canada. In this article, we will discuss the eligibility criteria for sponsors and the process of sponsorship in Canada.

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Canadian Sponsorship Programs

Canada offers various sponsorship programs that allow Canadian citizens and permanent residents to sponsor their loved ones. The most common programs include:

  • Family sponsorship program
  • Spousal sponsorship program
  • Parent and grandparent sponsorship program

Requirements for Sponsors

To be eligible to sponsor someone in Canada, you must meet the following requirements:

  • You must be at least 18 years old.
  • You must be a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident of Canada.
  • You must demonstrate the ability to financially support the sponsored individual.
  • You must sign an undertaking to provide financial support for the basic needs of the sponsored individual for a specified period.

Eligibility Criteria for Sponsored Individuals

While sponsors have their own requirements, individuals being sponsored must also meet certain criteria. These may include:

  • Providing proof of relationship with the sponsor
  • Passing medical examinations
  • Meeting admissibility requirements, such as criminal background checks

Application Process

The application process for sponsorship in Canada involves several steps:

  1. Complete the application forms and gather supporting documents.
  2. Submit the application and pay the required fees.
  3. Undergo medical examinations and background checks.
  4. Wait for the application to be processed by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).
  5. Attend interviews, if necessary.
  6. Receive a decision on the sponsorship application.

Financial Responsibilities of Sponsors

As a sponsor, you have financial responsibilities towards the sponsored individual. You are required to provide financial support for their basic needs, such as food, clothing, and shelter. This responsibility lasts for a certain period, which varies depending on the type of sponsorship.

Supporting Documents

When applying for sponsorship, you will need to include various supporting documents. These may include:

  • Proof of identity
  • Proof of relationship with the sponsored individual
  • Financial documents to demonstrate your ability to support the sponsored individual
  • Police certificates
  • Medical examination results

Processing Time and Fees

The processing time for sponsorship applications can vary. It is important to check the current processing times on the IRCC website. Additionally, there are fees associated with sponsoring someone to come to Canada. These fees cover the processing of the application and other related services.

Appeals and Refusals

In case your sponsorship application is refused, you may have the option to appeal the decision. It is important to carefully review the reasons for refusal and seek legal advice if necessary. Appeals must be submitted within a specified timeframe.


Sponsoring someone to come and live in Canada is a significant commitment, but it can also be a rewarding experience. By understanding the eligibility criteria, application process, and financial responsibilities, you can navigate the sponsorship process with confidence. Consult the official IRCC website or seek legal advice for detailed information and guidance specific to your situation.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Who is eligible to be a sponsor in Canada?

Canadian citizens and permanent residents who meet the requirements can sponsor their family members, spouses, common-law partners, conjugal partners, dependent children, parents, and grandparents to come and live in Canada.

2. Can a permanent resident sponsor someone to come to Canada?

Yes, permanent residents of Canada can sponsor eligible family members to come and live in Canada. However, there may be additional requirements and limitations compared to Canadian citizens.

3. Can a Canadian citizen sponsor a same-sex partner?

Yes, Canadian citizens can sponsor their same-sex partners under the spousal sponsorship program. Canada recognizes same-sex marriages and common-law partnerships for immigration purposes.

4. What happens if a sponsored individual separates from their sponsor?

If a sponsored individual separates from their sponsor during the sponsorship period, the sponsor may still have financial responsibilities. It is important to consult with an immigration lawyer or advisor to understand the implications and options in such situations.

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