Canada has always been accepting and welcoming of immigrants in their country. Many people from other countries take advantage of this, knowing that there are great opportunities in the country compared to where they’re originally from. To keep up with the work demands in the country and the enormous amount of interested individuals, the Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has made it easier for everyone to migrate by opening applications for permanent residence sponsorship.

One of the popular sponsorships in Canada is the spousal sponsorship application, through which Canadian citizens or permanent residents can sponsor their spouse or common-law partner to migrate to the country with them. Applying for one is nothing complicated, as long as you both meet the eligibility requirements of the IRCC.

Almost anyone can become eligible, but is it possible for spouses with criminal records outside Canada to migrate to the country?

What are the requirements for a spousal sponsorship application in Canada?

As mentioned, applying for spousal sponsorship is not complicated at all. You only need to submit your application to the CIC office and meet the criteria for eligibility. There are several requirements a sponsor should meet, including:

  1. They should be a Canadain citizen or permanent resident
  2. They should be the legal spouse or partner of the sponsee
  3. They should show proof that they can provide for their sponsee’s basic needs for at least three years after approval

What happens if your partner has a criminal record?

Technically, the Canadian government dismisses the application and pronounces someone who has pending criminal records with a 10-year (or more) prison sentence inadmissible to the country. The application will also be rejected if the sponsor is found to be serving out a sentence in Canada.

However, there is a legal way for them to be allowed migration by applying for rehabilitation. The result of the application will solely depend on their evaluation and review of the IRCC, and the process will take no less than five years after serving their sentence.

However, if your sponsee has a criminal charge in Canada, the record suspension should be handled by the Parole Board of Canada. To be considered, a person should wait for at least five years for summary offences and ten years for indictable offences before they get to obtain a record suspension.

Sponsoring Canadian Citizen
Spousal Sponsorship


Canada is one of the countries that are very open and welcoming to immigrants. However, they also hold certain limitations and restrictions to ensure balance, safety, and security in their country. Although almost any close relative of a Canadian citizen or permanent resident can be eligible for migration, those who have criminal records both inside and outside the country can be declared inadmissible.

Still, there is a legitimate albeit lengthy way their application can be considered. If a sponsee has a criminal charge outside Canada, they need to request rehabilitation with the IRCC. On the other hand, if they have a criminal conviction in Canada, they must apply for a record suspension with the Parole Board of Canada. Both processes will require the sponsee to wait five to ten years before consideration.

If you need assistance with your spousal sponsorship application, get in touch with our team today. Our trusted immigration consultants in Toronto will help ensure that your application requirements are complete and correct and that your application will undergo proper processing.

If you’re looking for professional help from a trusted firm, please contact us at or call 1-888-404-8472.

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