How to sponsor your parents and grandparents.
Author: Yan Desjardins, Founder and Executive Director.
The parents and grandparents sponsorship program is another way to immigrate to Canada for the whole family. However, the process differs slightly from the other family class categories and can take longer to process.
In the article below, we will walk through the different requirements of the sponsorship program.
What do I need to qualify to sponsor my parents and grandparents?
Along with the other requirements to qualify as a sponsor, you must demonstrate that you meet the minimum necessary income (MNI) to apply.
Unlike the spouse and partner sponsorship category, where there are no minimum financial requirements, this category requires that you provide a financial guarantee.
In addition, you will need to produce evidence that you have met the MNI for the 3 years before your application is submitted.
What is the purpose of the MNI?
The MNI is required to ensure that you have sufficient income to support your family after they immigrate to Canada as a family.
In other immigration categories, applicants are most likely younger and able to enter the labour market in Canada, which is not the case for this one. In addition, it requires that you provide sufficient financial support to prevent the use of social assistance by your family members.
Can my spouse or partner sign the sponsor’s financial undertaking with me?
Yes. You can have a co-signer to support the sponsorship application. However, you must know that only your Canadian citizen or permanent resident spouse or common-law partner can sign the undertaking with you.
It effectively means that you can combine the income of your spouse or partner with yours to meet the MNI. In addition, it allows more flexibility for you to sponsor your loved ones to immigrate to Canada as a family.
When you sign the undertaking agreement, you and your co-signer will be responsible for your family members for 20 years after they arrive in Canada.
How is the MNI calculated, and how can I prove it?
Calculation of the MNI is based on your current family size, including your spouse or partners and children, and the number of persons you are sponsoring.
For example, let’s say you have a spouse or partner and 2 children (dependent on you and under 22). Including you, the size of your family is 4.
If you intend to sponsor your mother and father to immigrate to Canada as a family, then your family unit will include 6 people in total.
Once you have determined the size of your family unit, you can refer to the Government of Canada MNI yearly chart. Visit the Government of Canada website for more information.
You and your co-signer can provide copies of your Notice of Assessment from the Canada Revenue Agency to meet the documentary evidence required for this requirement.
Who can be included in the sponsorship application?
When you apply to sponsor your parents, you can include your siblings, brothers and sisters, in the application to help everyone immigrate to Canada as a whole family.
Your brothers and sisters can qualify as long as they are under 22 years of age at the time of application. If one or more of your siblings are over the age of 22 but dependent on their parents due to a psychological or physical disability, they may still qualify.
Otherwise, you can no longer sponsor a brother or sister. Instead, they must qualify and apply for one of the immigration programs independently.
How does the sponsorship program work?
Each year, the government sets a maximum number of applications it will receive for parents to immigrate to Canada as a family. At the beginning of each year, the government of Canada opens the IRCC online portal for sponsors to register their intent to make an application. The government then issues invitations to apply to the ones selected in the program.
This method is fairly new and was introduced to reduce the extremely long processing times seen over the years.
The program has been so popular the quota was often reached in the portal within as fast as 15 minutes. It is therefore not a program that is easy to qualify for.
Have you considered the super visa for parents and grandparents?
The super visa is a special Canadian tourist visa that allows parents and grandparents to stay in Canada for up to 2 years at a time. The Canadian tourist visa is also valid for 10 years and allows you to come and go.
This type of Canadian tourist visa was introduced to provide an alternative to the lengthy sponsorship program.
Want to know if you qualify?
Then follow these 3 easy steps. First, navigate to the self-assessment tool on our website. Second, complete the information. Third click send! It’s that easy.
We will get back to you with a free assessment as soon as possible.