Are you looking to sponsor your spouse or common-law partner that doesn’t have immigration status? You’ve got options!
Cases involving “lack of status” spouses and partners fall under Immigration Refugee and Citizenship Canada’s (IRCC) goal to prevent hardship and help keep families together.
Although it’s possible to receive a removal order for being in Canada without status, IRCC has policies that allow people to apply for spousal or common-law sponsorship as a non-status migrant without being forced to leave. For the permanent residence application to be successful, the couple must meet all other criteria for spousal and common-law sponsorship admissibility.
Canadians can sponsor their foreign partners regardless of immigration status. However, they still must sign an undertaking, which promises the government that they will support the basic needs of their spouse or partner and dependent children. Undertaking requirements differ for sponsors from Quebec and the rest of Canada.
What Does 'Lack of Status' Mean?
“Lack of status” spouses or common-law partners includes people who have:
- Overstayed their legal status as a visitor, student, or worker
- Studied or worked without immigration status
- Come to Canada without a visa or other required documents
- Come to Canada without a valid passport or travel document
It does not include the following:
- Failure to obtain permission to enter Canada after being deported
- Entering Canada with a fraudulent passport, travel document, or visa and who have used it for misrepresentation
- Facing a removal order or enforcement proceedings for reasons other than the above.
To apply for sponsorship as a person without immigration status, the couple must go through the regular Spouse or Common-law Partner in Canada application process.