When to do Overseas vs. Inland Spousal Sponsorship Application

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When you want to sponsor your spouse to Canada, you have two options: You can marry your spouse in their home country or any other country outside of Canada OR You can bring your spouse to Canada on a visitor visa

When you want to sponsor your spouse to Canada, you have two options:

  1. You can marry your spouse in their home country or any other country outside of Canada, then file the spousal sponsorship application at the Canadian visa office in your spouse’s home country. This is called overseas spousal sponsorship. OR
  2. You can bring your spouse to Canada on a visitor visa and then file their sponsorship application within Canada. This is called inland spousal sponsorship.

Both options have pros and cons, so you have to decide which option fits you best given your own personal circumstances.

One important thing to remember is that if you apply through overseas spousal sponsorship and the application is refused, you can appeal the decision and may still be able to bring your spouse to Canada if you win the appeal. But, if you file through inland spousal sponsorship and the application is refused, you are not allowed to appeal this decision at all.

This is a very important thing to consider if there are issues with your application which increase the chance that the sponsorship will be refused, such as criminal history or medical problems for the person you are sponsoring, or a lack of documentation showing that your relationship is genuine.

Another factor to consider is that the processing time for overseas spousal sponsorship applications is usually shorter than inland spousal sponsorship applications. Here are some examples:

Processing Time for Overseas Spousal Sponsorships
Country of Origin Sponsor Assessment Sponsorship Processing Time
China 27 days 9 months
Philippines 14 months
India 11 months
Pakistan 31 months
United States 18 months
France 9 months
United Kingdom 11 months
Korea 14 months
Egypt 18 months
Colombia 15 months

 

Processing Time for Inland Spousal Sponsorships
Country of Origin Sponsor Assessment Sponsorship Processing Time
Any 11 months 8 months

Have someone from our team call you back and answer all your questions.

Also, keep in mind that even if your spouse is currently visiting you in Canada, you can still file their sponsorship application overseas at the Canadian visa office in your spouse’s home country. This way you can take advantage of the possibility of appeal if necessary, and the shorter processing time. But, if your spouse is selected for an interview as part of their sponsorship application, they will have to return to their home country to meet with an immigration officer at the Canadian visa office.

If your spouse is from a visa exempt country, one benefit of the inland spousal sponsorship stream is that your spouse can come stay with you in Canada while the application is processing, and then they never have to leave if the application is approved. Also, when the inland sponsorship application is approved in principle, your spouse can apply for an open work permit and then get their SIN number and health card before the final approval is issued for the sponsorship application. (For more information on the difference between open and closed work permits, click here.)

If your spouse has applied for a visitor visa to Canada and was refused, you have no choice but to file the overseas sponsorship application.

Whether your spousal sponsorship application is submitted overseas or inland has no effect on the chances of approval. The application fees and requirements are also the same for both types of sponsorship applications.

What was your sponsorship experience? Why did you choose to file inland or overseas?

Should you Choose Family Class Sponsorship (Outland)?

This is for a sponsored partner or spouse who:

  • Lives outside of Canada, OR
  • Lives with you in Canada but will not live in Canada throughout the whole application process, OR
  • Is your conjugal partner or for if you are sponsoring a dependent child.

If your sponsorship is one of the above then you are dealing with what is called an Outland Sponsorship. This is where the person you are sponsoring is abroad for at least part of the application process.

If there is any doubt about whether your sponsored spouse/partner can remain with you in Canada throughout the whole application process, then you should take this route and file an outland application under Family Class sponsorship.

Also, you want to apply through the “Family Class” if you are prepared to file an appeal if the sponsorship application is refused. Inland sponsorship applications cannot be appealed.

 

Should You Choose Spouse or Common-law Partner in Canada Class (inland)?

This is for a sponsored partner or spouse who:

  • Lives with you in Canada, AND
  • Has valid immigration status.

If your sponsorship falls under this class, it is called an Inland Sponsorship. This is where the person you are sponsoring is living with you in Canada throughout the whole application process. Remember, you have to be sure they will be able to maintain their valid immigration status while the application is processed – sponsorship applications can take over a year and sometimes up to 2 or more years to be processed.

No Appeals: It’s extremely important to note that you cannot normally appeal a refused inland sponsorship application. So if you are at all concerned about the chances of the application being approved, apply through Family Class/Outland.

Now it’s time to start filling out the many forms you will need to complete your application.

 

Click here to learn more about Immigroup’s Sponsorship service…

Overseas Sponsorship

 

Inland Sponsorship

 

 

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