Sponsorship enquiry

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disgruntledmoose

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Sponsorship enquiry
« on: March 12, 2016, 05:24:15 PM »
Hi there,

I am a British citizen looking for some advice on moving to Canada to be with my girlfriend.

I went to Canada last summer (August 2015) to attend my cousin's wedding and we met there. We officially became a couple in September. I am currently studying in the UK and looking to leave my course as it does not cater to my strengths or work experience. We have discussed me moving over as she is settled there with a steady job and I am agreeable to it. As far as we are aware we have two main options to living together, I could either apply for a course in Canada, and subsequently a student visa; the caveat being that money is an issue. We have also discussed sponsorship and we were wondering if we could get some advice on our status and what we need to do.

We are aware that if we are eligible for sponsorship that we could apply for an open work permit and that would make matters infinitely easier on the both of us, as ideally we would be getting our own place to live in.

We are aiming to be living together by January 2017 and by this time we will have been together for over a year. I have been to visit her over Christmas and spent three weeks with her and her immediate family. We have a vast amount of chat logs as evidence of our contact, letters, cards through the post in addition to photographs with her family. She will be visiting me for a week in March and we will be going to Africa together to visit my family based there for a month - customarily we take a lot of photographs with family. We have also paid for flights for each other for these trips and can provide evidence for them.

We were wondering what would work best for us as we are very keen to live and build a life together.

At the minute I am in the process of applying to a technical college for a course related to my previous work experience and would be looking to ultimately end up in that field having been educated in Canada.

Thank you in advance for your help.

Daniel.

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Riley Haas

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Re: Sponsorship enquiry
« Reply #1 on: March 14, 2016, 10:16:35 AM »
Hi Daniel,
First off, a question: What is your girlfriend's status in Canada? Is she a citizen or a permanent resident? If the answer is yes to either of those, then she is eligible to sponsor you, unless she falls under one of the few restrictions (http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/immigrate/sponsor/spouse-apply-who.asp).
So, let's assume she's either a citizen or a permanent resident and she's otherwise eligible to sponsor you. You have a problem with your plan, and that is that IRCC (formerly CIC) requires the applicants to demonstrate a reason why you cannot marry, if someone is sponsoring their partner and you're not already married or common-law. Unless you can give some conclusive proof as to why you've been prevented from marrying (and, without knowing more of your situation, I will say that it doesn't sound like your case falls into this category), you have two options:
  • The first option is, as you said, to come here as a student. You will be allowed to work 20 hours a week during the semester and 40 hours a week when your program is not in session. You will have to live with her for one year. You can then apply as a common law couple. At that point you could, conceivably, switch from your study permit to am open work permit.
  • The other option is to marry, either while you're in Africa or somewhere else, and start the sponsorship process as soon as possible. You can then either be sponsored inland (as with the option above) and apply for that work permit, or she can sponsor you outland and you can stay in the UK until you're approved.

I hope this helps clarify the situation.

Riley
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disgruntledmoose

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Re: Sponsorship enquiry
« Reply #2 on: November 07, 2016, 01:13:00 PM »
Hi Riley,

Thank you for your help. We have since been to Africa and we are now engaged. I am due to head to Canada in December and we intend to marry there. I am coming on a visitor visa and I was wanting some help with regards to explaining our situation to a CBSA agent.

We have every intention to be honest and upfront about our plans and I was wondering if there was anything that would be likely to cause problems with entry into the country. I have my eTA and plane ticket booked - it is a one way ticket which I know might raise some suspicions, but I will be coming with more than enough funds to purchase a return when required. My fianceť will be supporting me for the duration of my stay there and has recently signed for an apartment for the both of us to stay.

I am aware that at the end of the day it's down to the individual agent at the border, but is there anything that would be a foreseeable problem with our plans?

Thank you

Daniel

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Riley Haas

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Re: Sponsorship enquiry
« Reply #3 on: November 07, 2016, 01:25:58 PM »
Congratulations on your engagement.

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We have every intention to be honest and upfront about our plans and I was wondering if there was anything that would be likely to cause problems with entry into the country.

Yes, absolutely. There is a delicate balance here: on the one hand, you have to convince the CBSA officer that you will leave if your application is denied - as the officer is not supposed to let you in temporarily if you trying to be here permanently - on the other you cannot lie about why you are entering the country. This is called "dual intent" and it's a delicate balance. I honestly don't know how you strike it but I do know that people are able to do this as people enter for this purpose all the time. And we've even had a forum participant share his experience about it.

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it is a one way ticket which I know might raise some suspicions

This will be a huge red flag so be upfront about it and have the proof of funds ready. I'm not sure what else you can do that's better beyond actually purchasing a return ticket.

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My fianceť will be supporting me for the duration of my stay there and has recently signed for an apartment for the both of us to stay.

This will also be a red flag, depending upon the officer and how upfront you are about your intentions. Most visitors do not move in when they get here.

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I am aware that at the end of the day it's down to the individual agent at the border, but is there anything that would be a foreseeable problem with our plans?

As I said, it's a delicate balance: the officer has to feel that you will leave when required. Sorry I can't be more helpful. This is certainly the hardest part of inland applications.

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disgruntledmoose

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Re: Sponsorship enquiry
« Reply #4 on: November 07, 2016, 01:46:13 PM »
Thank you for the quick reply! It's definitely helped clarify a few things, maybe I could clarify on my end.

My fiancee has recently signed for an apartment, that is where she will be accommodating me - she was recently in shared accommodation and wanted her own place. I will be getting a letter from my fianceť stating the above and that she will be responsible for my upkeep during the time I will be visiting.

I will have over C$2k available in my bank account when I arrive and will have the means to prove it through bank statements/banking app information should they be happy with that. Do you think they would be satisfied with that as reasonable proof that I can afford to leave when the time is due? I am fully aware of the rules and I want to abide by Canadian law, be fully cooperative and do everything above board and be as transparent as possible.

We will discuss it more between us, but this has helped a lot! Thank you so much.

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Riley Haas

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Re: Sponsorship enquiry
« Reply #5 on: November 07, 2016, 01:58:57 PM »
I think you should say what you've just said to me to the officer when you land. Be clear that you are trying to follow the rules. Hopefully you get an officer in a good mood.

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disgruntledmoose

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Re: Sponsorship enquiry
« Reply #6 on: November 12, 2016, 07:09:19 PM »
Hi Riley,

As always, thank you so much for your help.
Another avenue we were thinking about is the IEC; I was thinking of applying for it while I'm here before I visit my fianceť. Assuming I was to be invited to apply for a work permit, I would be in Canada at that point. My question is, would that be something that would be odd to a border agent?

I understand that should I get an invitation to apply for a work permit while in Canada,  I would have to leave and re-enter the country and we are both okay with that. I'm just wondering if that would be something that would cause problems on arrival.

Thanks in advance for your help.

Dan

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Riley Haas

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Re: Sponsorship enquiry
« Reply #7 on: November 14, 2016, 10:17:31 AM »
Yes, you could do IEC if you qualify. It's highly competitive, but you could absolutely go for it. Coming here under IEC would allow you to be sponsored inland at a later date without the hassles of entering to "visit" specifically to be sponsored inland.

Landing here before you've been accepted for IEC would indeed be a little odd. Again, they might have fears that you'll overstay if you are not approved.

Does that answer your question?

 

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