December 14, 2022

Super Visas – Bridging the PGP Sponsorship Gap

Posted by Athena Portokalidis - Bellissimo Law Group PC

While a Super Visa is similar to a visitor visa in that it allows a holder to travel to Canada as a visitor, there are several important differences between a regular visitor visa (or Temporary Resident Visa) and a Super Visa.  

Typically, a regular visitor visa, either single-entry or multiple-entry, allows a foreign national to enter Canada as a visitor and remain for up to six months[1]. A Super Visa, in contrast, generally permits multiple-entries and allows a foreign national to stay for up to five years at a time – which increased from the previously permitted two years in July 2022 [2]. Additionally, the Super Visa is intended only for persons seeking to travel to Canada to visit their children or grandchildren who are Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada and have invited the Super Visa applicant to Canada [3].  

There are additional application requirements for Super Visas that do not exist for regular visitor visas, such as mandatory medical insurance from a Canadian insurance company valid for at least one year from the date of entry, paid in full, for at least $100,000 emergency coverage, alongside the completion of an immigration medical exam [4]. The child or grandchild inviting the Super Visa applicant must also prove that they meet the minimum necessary income and can provide financial support for the duration of their parents’ or grandparents’ stay [5]. 

Although Super Visas present a temporary option for a parent or grandparent to reunite with their children and/or grandchildren, with the increase in the length of maximum stay up to five years for Super Visa holders, this visa presents a great alternative to those who are either awaiting an invitation to apply under the Parents and Grandparents (PGP) Sponsorship program, or for the program to re-open to have opportunity to submit an interest to sponsor form. The Super Visa can allow these families to “bridge the gap” until the PGP Sponsorship program re-opens, which has not been announced since additional invitations to apply were sent out this year to those who submitted interest to sponsor forms in 2020 [6]. An added benefit: no caps or interest to sponsor forms required before filing an application for a Super Visa as of the date of writing. 

If you are interested in discussing your eligibility to apply for a Super Visa, or to invite your parent(s) or grandparent(s) to apply for a Super Visa, contact us to book a consultation.