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Family Class Sponsorships

Common-law Partner Sponsorship

Q.I must say that I have been reading your column since its inception in the 24 Hours. I must commend you on the great work you are doing, I find your responses to be very insightful and informative. Well, I am Canadian and my boyfriend of one year is a French citizen. We are both professionals, he has a Master’s degree in languages and his area of study was translation. He was living here in Canada, but he moved back to France. I am interested in Common Law Sponsorship. My question is: would we qualify for Common Law Sponsorship and if so what is the protocol to start the procedure? As well as what are the other options that are available to us? Any information you are able to provide would be of tremendous assistance. Thanks for your assistance I look forward to your reply.

A. First of all, before applying for a common-law sponsorship, you must make sure you satisfy the requirement of one year of living together in the same residence. If you have not lived together for one year common law sponsorship at this time is not an option. As your common-law partner is in France you must complete an overseas sponsorship beginning with part one the sponsor’s application which is filed at CPC Mississauga. Sponsorship eligibility requirements include that the sponsor must be at least eighteen years of age, not in receipt of social assistance and free of certain criminality including sexual offences and domestic assaults to list but a few. The procedure, if correctly done, should not take longer than 6 – 8 months. Be mindful however you will be responsible for him for three years after he becomes a permanent resident even if your relationship ends.

If sponsorship is not possible right now, other options include exploring a work permit with a Labour Market Opinion (LMO) from an employer willing to go through the procedure, or a skilled worker application, if he qualifies. Sponsorships are priority one for the department and are often the least complicated of immigration applications. Good luck!

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