Sponsorship is an intimidating and time-consuming process that can involve hundreds of pages of forms, documents and relationship evidence. Let New Roots Immigration take care of the process for you!

Bring your Common-Law Partner to Canada

If you’re a Canadian citizen or permanent resident that has lived continuously with your partner for a period of at least twelve months (or one year) and want to sponsor your partner to Canada, we specialized with the sponsorship process. Sponsorship applications are complex and heavily involved –  requiring plenty of forms, documentation and proof of relationship. Compiling a thoroughly documented application can take weeks or months of preparation. Hiring an immigration representative can take care of your application for you!

Details required to sponsor your Common-Law Partner

Common-law partnerships normally require additional details proving – on a factual basis – that you have lived together in a conjugal partnership for a minimum of twelve months. 

A common-law sponsorship can be either ‘inland’ or ‘outland’ and meeting the eligibility requirements can be determined by an immigration expert. In some cases, your partner may qualify for an open work permit.

How do I start the Common-Law Sponsorship application? 

We’re your first step in starting a sponsorship application. Complete an eligibility assessment.


Can a person in Canada sponsor his/her Common-Law partner?

Yes. One can sponsor his/her common law partner who lives with him/her in Canada and has temporary resident status. A sponsor may also be eligible to sponsor a common-law partner outside of Canada if they’ve lived together for a certain amount of time and continue to be in a genuine marriage-like relationship.

How can a sponsor prove that someone is his/her Common-Law Partner?

The sponsor can use following documents to prove the common law partner relationship:
1. Shared ownership of a residential property
2. Lease or rental agreement jointly signed by both parties
3. Bills for shared utility services like power, telephone, etc.
4. Documents like driving license of both persons showing the same address
5. Documents that can be used as proof of identification

What is meant by “Common-Law Partner” in Canada?

If a couple have lived together for at least one year in a conjugal relationship, they are considered common law partners as per the rules of Immigration Canada. Their relationship exists right from the day on which both can provide documentary evidence to support their conjugal relationship for a consecutive 12 months. The 12 month minimum requirement must be met prior to filing.

What are “Inland” and “Outland” applications for sponsoring Common-Law partner to Canada?

The sponsor can file an Inland application while the sponsored person lives in Canada. When a permanent resident wants to sponsor a common-law partner, he/she must reside in Canada throughout the application process. Canadian Citizens may reside inside or outside Canada during the process. Even when the applicant lives in Canada, an “outland” application may be filed, or must be filed if the applicant resides in their home country. Most commonly, an “outland” sponsorship application is filed when the sponsored person does not live in Canada at time of filing.

Do the couple need to be married for sponsoring the common-law partner?

No. As per rules in Canada, the couple need not to be married. The minimum requirement for sponsoring a common-law partner is that they must have lived together for at least twelve consecutive months. They must have shared a house, combined financial affairs and supported each other emotionally. Many couples are unable to live as married couple because of religion, sexual orientation or restrictions related to immigration. In some rare cases, they can apply as conjugal partners if they have already been in a relationship at least for one year.

What evidence can be used to prove the conjugal relationship?

A couple who have lived together for minimum one year can produce proof of their joint bank accounts, life insurance, letters from friends and family, ownership of a house or any other similar documents to prove their conjugal relationship.

Is there a minimum financial requirement for the sponsor?

As per immigration rules of Canada, the sponsor is not required to have any minimum earning or minimum savings in cases where they are sponsoring only their partner and if applicable, their dependent children. However, there are exceptions to this rule depending on the family dynamics [including depending children of dependent children being sponsored] and whether the sponsorship falls under the province of Quebec. Hence, even students, self-employed people and retired people can sponsor a common-law partner.

Will the application get rejected if the sponsor or the common-law partner has a previous common law relationship?

Not likely. The common law relationship ends with the death of one of the partners or when one of the partners does not want to continue the conjugal relationship. Most likely, a person will not have an official document severing a previous common-law relationship. Of course, there are many reasons why an application could be rejected and an analysis of the reasons would be crucial.

Will a common-law sponsorship get approval if, for example, the sponsor or common-law partner is (still) legally married to another person?

It depends. A sponsor or common-law partner who is legally married to a third party must have broken their marriage relationship and must have separated from the spouse. After separation, they must have a conjugal relationship with the common law partner for at least one year (12 consecutive months). The common law partnership will not be approved if it is found that either or both the parties continue with a conjugal relationship with a person to whom they are legally married.