You and your partner are ready to start the incredible journey of immigrating to Canada. Whether you are applying on behalf of your beloved spouse or you are the beloved spouse, it will be helpful to know what the requirements are to be eligible for a spousal visa for Canada. It doesn’t matter which visa or immigration program you are coming to Canada on, if you have a common law partner, they may be eligible to come live with you and can even work in Canada.
The first and most important factor is what qualifies you as a common law partner or spouse. Because we have a liberal and progressive government, the definition of a common law partner is: any person (singular!) who has been living with you in a conjugal relationship for at least one year. This is applicable to both opposite and same-sex relationships.
Spousal Visa Requirements
So, you qualify as a common law spouse. It may not be the most romantic or exciting title but hey, it has its advantages, as you will soon see. While your partner is doing their thing; whether it’s studying, starting a business or putting in the hours at their new nine to five, it is important that you are also able to do yours.
Applying for Your Spousal Visa
Together, you and your partner, the principal applicant, will need to show that:
- the two of you have been living together; a shared rent contract, bank account etc;
- they meet the minimum funds required to support themselves and you; and
- You must have a valid passport and be admissible to Canada;
You can then apply for a spousal visa/travel permit which is valid for six months. Once you arrive in Canada we recommend that you get a job or enroll in a program so that you can get a longer term visa such as a study or work permit.
Benefits of Moving to Canada with your Partner
Study in Canada
A good option you may consider is to study in Canada while your partner is doing their thing. If you are concerned about the cost of tuition, don't worry too much as you are also eligible to work a part time job while you are studying as long as it is less than 30 hours a week. Before you know it you will be graduating, have a top quality education no one can ever take from you and then you’ll be earning a great salary to boot.
One of the most preferred ways the Immigration and Refugee Council of Canada grants foreigners permanent residency in Canada is through one of the many international graduate immigration streams. Nearly every province or territory has an immigration stream dedicated to helping foreigners who graduate from a designated Canadian post secondary school become permanent residents. After all, you’ve studied here, why not put what you learnt to use here, making not only your own but other Canadians' lives better in the process.
Working in Canada
Once you arrive in Canada, if you can secure a job offer, you will also be eligible for an open work permit. This way you can contribute to both your household and the Canadian economy, building your case for permanent residency in Canada with every passing day. And at the end of every work day you and your partner can come together with a couple of coffees or a vanilla shakes while enjoying the sunset over your local lake, or in the winter time build a fire and catch up on the latest episode of Schitts Creek (or whatever) with a warm beef dip (google it).
Bringing a Dependent to Canada
If you are applying for permanent residency in Canada, regardless of whether it is inland or outland sponsorship, it is imperative that you add your partner as a dependent on your application. It is highly recommended that you do not apply separately. There is a lot more administration, double the costs and the chance that one of you may be approved and the other not. When applying as a couple, you can also pool your resources to make your application more attractive, for example assets in your name, qualifications and so on.
How We Can Help You
By using our accredited Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultants (RCICs) you will not only improve your chances of success in the visa application process, but you will get expert advice on which province and program is best for your specific needs. Our RCICs are highly qualified and are granted permission by the ICCRC to assist you with your eligibility evaluation, review all your documents and application forms and submit them to the Canadian and provincial government on your behalf. Why take the chance of having your application denied because your forms are incorrect, sent in too late or missing a small but vital piece of information.
When you apply for your Canadian work permit and eventually permanent residency with our services you essentially remove all the stress and complications from the immigration process, and as long as you meet the eligibility requirements, you can rest assured that your application is in good hands.
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