Canada is a welcoming country with one of the most open and progressive immigrant policies in the world. That’s why workers and families view it as the land of opportunity where they can start a new life. 

Families are also placed as a high priority, that’s why Canada has family reunification immigration programs that allow a permanent resident to sponsor their spouse or foreign partner to migrate to Canada – be it for mixed-orientation to same-sex marriage. 

Seeing as love knows no geographical boundaries, couples who are not yet married can’t help but beg the question: is it possible to sponsor their girlfriend or boyfriend’s immigration to Canada in 2020? 

Determining the Eligibility for a Sponsorship to Canada 

The first step to applying for sponsorship is first to determine whether that person is eligible to come to Canada or not. So long as you’re an 18-years-old or above Canadian citizen or have permanent residence, you can sponsor your partner to migrate to Canada. However, there are some exceptions to the rule.

For one, you won’t be able to sponsor your partner if you have a history of failing to meet the requirements of a sponsorship agreement, which includes basic requirements necessary for quality living. 

An individual’s absence from paying alimony or child support will also prove that you don’t have the financial means to sponsor someone, along with instances where you had to declare bankruptcy and the inability to pay back an immigration loan. 

Being convicted or crimes from offences that have a sexual nature and violence will also immediately rule you out as a sponsor. Lastly, if you were an immigrant who was sponsored by a spouse, common-law partner, or conjugal partner, you will have to wait to finish the five years before being able to sponsor someone else. 

Defining the Three Main Categories of Immigration for Loved Ones to Canada 

Sponsoring a partner to immigrate to Canada can be complicated as each situation is different, but it generally falls under three categories: 

  • Spousal Sponsorship – this sponsorship involves the legal marriage between a Canadian citizen or permanent resident with a foreign citizen that is at least 18-years-old. So long as you meet these basic requirements, you can apply for Spousal Sponsorship. 

This sponsorship also doesn’t require you to show a certain level of income, but having social assistance without any disabilities will bar you from applying for sponsorship. 

  • Common-Law Sponsorship – couples who are not yet married but have been living together in Canada for at least a year can apply for a common-law sponsorship. Of course, you will need to provide evidence of cohabitation and an exclusive relationship – from shared assets, travel history together, relationship with families, and other documents that prove you have a legitimate and committed relationship. The process also involves an interview with a visa officer. 
  • Conjugal Sponsorship – this is arguably one of the most complicated out of the list as it caters to couples who do not fit either category. The relationship involves a “marriage-like” set-up, minus the legalization and legitimacy of a real marriage. 

In that sense, you will need to provide a history together, shared assets, and some form of public expression that supports your relationship to apply for conjugal sponsorship.


Sponsoring Canadian Citizen
Sponsoring Canadian Citizen

Conclusion: Sponsoring Your Girlfriend or Boyfriend to Become a Full-Fledged Canadian Citizen 

Love knows no bounds, and Canada is an open country that places high importance on bringing families together. With that in mind, the guide above should clue you in on the steps to properly sponsor your partner. 

If you’re looking for immigration consultants in Toronto, get in touch with us today to see how we can help! 

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