Be ready: opportunity doesn’t last long
Immigration, refugees and Citizenship Canada has released new immigration levels for the next three years. Canada estimates that nearly one million permanent residents will be accepted through various immigration streams and programs.
The Express Entry management system remains the main source of newcomers to Canada, responding to the immigration dreams of skilled professionals, skilled trades and individuals who would have acquired Canadian work experience through such opportunities as a Post Graduate Work Permit and permits obtained through the Foreign Worker program. The Caregiver program has been made more robust in the last little while, with three streams through which individuals may apply for permanent residency. However, some important rules and procedures have changed as they apply to family class immigration, how you can sponsor your parent and grandparents to Canada, and who does and does not qualify as a dependant. Processing times for applications have been reduced, and the government has been demonstrating a dynamic approach to labour market needs as seen in recent Express Entry draws.
In the next three years, Canada will welcome more than a quarter of a million new immigrants through family class sponsorships. These individuals will be sponsored by their Canadian citizen or permanent resident relatives as spouses, common law partners, dependant children, parents and grandparents. Sponsorship of spouses and common-law partners along with dependant children is currently processed within a 12 month period as promised by the current government.
This processing time reflects a 50 percent reduction (from last year) in the time it now takes to receive a permanent resident visa under spousal sponsorship. As well, spouses and partners being sponsored from within Canada are permitted to apply for a work permit during processing time, and are therefore able to get a head start on their careers. All spousal applications from outside Canada are now processed at CPC-Sydney, Nova Scotia. Before making a decision as to whether or not you should submit an application inside or outside Canada, please contact us for informed and expert advice and guidance.
Parents and Grandparents
Qualified citizens and permanent residents are able to sponsor their parents and grandparents through a process that was first introduced in January of 2017. In January 2018, interested individuals once again were able to first express an interest in sponsoring their parents and grandparents by filling out an on-line application form within a strict timeline that spans approximately one month.
When this preliminary stage closed, individuals were subsequently drawn at random, and were given an invitation to submit a full-blown application, complete with supporting documentation. The Government of Canada sends out invitations to apply at irregular intervals during the year, with a specific deadline for submission. There are no extensions to this deadline. The number of permanent resident visas expected to be issued in 2018 for parents and grandparents will gradually increase so that by 2020, the numbers will be close to 21,000 new permanent residents. If you were not successful in receiving an invitation to submit an application, you should consider submitting an application for a Super Visa (10-year multiple entry) for your parents or grandparents. Contact us to help you submit a successful application.
New definition of Dependant
As of October 24, 2017, a dependant for immigration purposes is defined as someone under the age of 22.
Previously, this definition referred to individuals under the age of 19 years. As such, there is now an opportunity for individuals who were not able to come to Canada under the old definition, to now be sponsored by their family in Canada, provided they still qualify under the new definition.