How to Successfully Sponsor Your Spouse to Canada

Spousal Sponsorship Canada

Sponsoring your spouse to join you in Canada is a significant and often emotional journey. For many, it symbolizes the promise of a new life together in a country renowned for its inclusivity and opportunities. Whether you’re in Surrey, White Rock, or elsewhere in the Lower Mainland, understanding the spousal sponsorship process is crucial for a smooth and successful application. This guide will walk you through each step, highlight common mistakes to avoid, and help you decide whether hiring a lawyer is necessary.


How Long Does It Take to Sponsor a Spouse to Canada?

One of the most common questions is about the time it takes for a spousal sponsorship application to be processed. Generally, the current average processing time is around 12 months. However, several factors can influence this timeline, including the completeness of your application, the background checks required, and any medical examinations. Always use official IRCC website to check processing times. 

Tips to Expedite Your Application:

  • Ensure All Documents Are Complete: Double-check that you have included all necessary forms and supporting documents.
  • Respond Promptly: If additional information is requested, provide it as quickly as possible to avoid delays.


Can My Spouse Stay in Canada While Waiting for Sponsorship?

Understanding whether your spouse can remain in Canada while waiting for sponsorship approval depends on the type of application you submit. There are two main types: inland and outland applications.

Inland vs. Outland Applications:

  • Inland Applications: If your spouse is already in Canada, they can stay while the application is processed. They may also be eligible for an open work permit, allowing them to work while waiting.
  • Outland Applications: If your spouse is outside Canada, they must wait in their home country or on a visitor visa if applicable.


What Are the Common Mistakes for Spousal Sponsorship?

Avoiding common pitfalls can significantly increase your chances of a successful application. Here are some frequent errors to watch out for:

Common Mistakes:

  • Incomplete Applications: Missing documents or incorrect forms can lead to delays or rejections.
  • Insufficient Proof of Relationship: Provide thorough and convincing evidence of your genuine relationship.
  • Misunderstanding Eligibility Criteria: Ensure you meet all residency and financial requirements before applying.


Do You Need a Lawyer for Spousal Sponsorship Canada?

Deciding whether to hire a lawyer for your spousal sponsorship application depends on several factors. While it is possible to complete the process without legal assistance, a lawyer can provide valuable expertise and help navigate complex situations.

Benefits of Hiring a Lawyer:

  • Expertise in Immigration Law: Lawyers have a deep understanding of the legal requirements and procedures.
  • Error Reduction: Professional guidance helps minimize mistakes that can delay or derail your application.
  • Handling Complex Cases: Lawyers can manage complicated situations that may be difficult to navigate on your own.

For more information on why it is important to have an immigration consultant to work on your application, read our detailed blog post here.


Additional Steps in the Sponsorship Process


Preparing Your Application:

  • Gathering Documents: Ensure you have all the necessary documents, including marriage certificates, proof of relationship, and financial statements. It’s essential to provide clear and accurate information to avoid any delays.
  • Completing Forms: Fill out all required forms accurately and thoroughly. Double-check for any errors or omissions that could cause delays in the processing of your application.


Submitting Your Application:

  • Where to Submit: Depending on your application type (inland or outland), submit your application to the appropriate immigration office or online portal. Make sure you follow the specific instructions for your type of application.
  • Paying Fees: Be aware of the fees involved in the sponsorship process. These can include application fees, biometric fees, and other potential costs. Ensure all payments are made correctly to avoid processing delays.


After Submission:

  • Tracking Your Application: Use the online tracking system to monitor the status of your application. Staying informed about your application’s progress can help you respond quickly to any requests for additional information.
  • Responding to Requests: Be prompt and thorough in responding to any requests from immigration authorities for additional documents or information. Timely responses can prevent unnecessary delays.


Interview Preparation:

  • What to Expect: Prepare for the possibility of an interview. Understand the common questions that might be asked and gather all necessary documents to support your case.
  • Tips for Success: Practice answering potential questions with your spouse, ensure all your documents are organized, and stay calm and honest during the interview.



Sponsoring your spouse to come to Canada is a rewarding but detailed process. By understanding the timeline, knowing whether your spouse can stay in Canada during the process, avoiding common mistakes, and deciding if legal assistance is necessary, you can increase your chances of success. Remember, meticulous preparation and timely responses are crucial. If you have any questions or need personalized assistance, don’t hesitate to contact Element Immigration for expert guidance. We are here to help make your Canadian dream a reality.

Contact Us

For further assistance, please contact us:

Phone: 604-616-0967
Office Location: White Rock