Canada Removes Conditional Permanent Residence Provision

The Canadian government has announced that sponsored spouses and common-law partners will no longer pass through a period of conditional permanent resident status. As expected, the Liberal government of Canada, removed the provision which was introduced in in 2012, by the previous Conservative government.

In the provision that has been in use for close to four years sponsored spouses and common-law partners had to live with their sponsor for two and a half years if, at the time they applied, their relationship was less than two years old, and they had no children in common. Failure to abide by this law led to them losing their status in Canada.

The aim of this rule was to deter people from seeking to immigrate to Canada through non-genuine relationships. While the government states that it recognises that cases of marriage fraud exist, it also states that ‘the majority of relationships are genuine and most spousal sponsorship applications are made in good faith,’ adding that ‘eliminating conditional permanent residence upholds the government’s commitment to family reunification and supports gender equality and combating gender-based violence.

Effective from April 28, 2017, conditional permanent residence no longer applies to anyone, whether they were sponsored by a spouse or partner for permanent residence, or sponsored by someone who had a conditional permanent residence (i.e. child or parent).

To learn more about spousal sponsorship, click here.