Sponsor your same-sex spouse, common-law or conjugal partner

If you were married inside Canada, you can sponsor your gay or same-sex spouse. Same-sex or gay marriages are treated the same as heterosexual marriages. All you require is a marriage certificate from the province or territory where you got married.

If you were married outside Canada you can sponsor your spouse, if your same-sex marriage is legally recognized in the place where you were married. Generally, you must give IRCC proof that your marriage is legal.

Sponsoring a gay or Same-Sex Partner or Spouse

Assessing Conjugal Relationships

A conjugal partnerships can be based on the following applicable factors:

  • Mutual commitment to each other is conducive to a long-term relationship.
  • Their existing sexual behavior and commitment to each other.
  • Partners provide emotional support to one another.
  • Partners should be not being in another conjugal relationship.
  • The partners are providing each other with financial and economic support.
  • The partners have children or are taking care of them together.

Sponsoring a Same-Sex Common-Law or Conjugal Partner

You can sponsor your same-sex common-law partner, if you have been living together in a conjugal relationship for at least 1 year. Generally, you must show proof of the relationship through joint financial records, property, mail, or purchases.

You can sponsor your same-sex conjugal partner if you have been in a conjugal relationship for at least 1 year and have:

  • Been living outside of Canada.
  • Been in a conjugal relationship for at least a year, cannot live with the sponsor as a couple due to reasons such as immigration, sexual orientation, religious reasons, etc.

Requirements for Conjugal partner sponsorship

The applicant intends to immigrate as a conjugal partner must provide ample evidence of prevailing conjugal relationship with the sponsor for one year at least proving an existing mutually interdependent relationship. Both partners must be able to provide evidence of their inability to cohabit due to compelling barriers. This is regardless of their intention to marry, however, shows a legitimate objective to stay together.

Inability to reside together due to persecution or penal control

Conjugal relationships which are prevented from cohabiting due to threats of persecution or any other penal control may be considered as a common-law partnership to be sponsored as a conjugal partner. Persecution refers to the ability of the government to punish relationships such as homosexuals, gays, lesbians by law, and prevent such individuals from finding employment, shelter, and respect for their rights. Persecution also ostracizes them socially. Penal control prevents such individuals from living together as it is considered illegal by the law.

Forbidden Conjugal Relationships

Conjugal Relationships must show similar characteristics to marriage and common-law relationships. The conjugal relationships must show legality such as no consanguinity and follow the prohibited degrees in Marriage. The legal age for conjugal partnerships is 18.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it take to sponsor a same-sex partner in Canada?

Sponsorship applications take approximately 12 months to process from start to finish. They are typically not processed much faster than 12 months, but they can take longer, depending on the nature of your case.

What is the Minimum Income to Sponsor a partner?

There is no minimum income requirement for a spousal sponsorship. In contrast to other immigration programs, a spousal sponsorship does not have a minimum income requirement unless the person you are sponsoring has a dependent child. However, under regular circumstances, the sponsor is required to submit supporting documents to establish that he or she is employed and has submitted income taxes.

Can I stay in Canada while waiting for the sponsorship?

You can stay in Canada while waiting for your permanent residence as long as you maintain legal status. Temporary resident status is valid for a specific period of time and you must ensure that your status as a temporary resident remains valid while you are in Canada. Once a spousal sponsorship is submitted, the Applicant is eligible for an open work permit.

Can my partner sponsor me if our relationship is not ‘out’ ?

Yes, it is possible to file a sponsorship application despite not being out to friends and family. While this is rarer in western countries, in some countries there are safety concerns if they were forced to discuss their 2SLGBTQ+ identity with outside parties or family members or even worse could face criminal offenses.
In Sponsorship applications, the Onus is on the Applicant to prove it is a genuine relationship. This can be established through evidence of cohabitation or if not living together through evidence of travel to see one another and communication between the parties. Every relationship is different and there could be various pieces of supporting documentation to prove it is a genuine relationship.

Hire an Expert Same-Sex Sponsorship Lawyer

Let an expert Saem-sex Sponsorship Lawyer guide you and prepare your common-law partner application:

  • Guide you and your spouse through the immigration process from start to finish.
  • Customize your application based on your circumstances.
  • Review all documentation and supporting evidence.
  • Draft forms, letters and supporting documents.
  • Provide expert legal submissions.
  • Communicate with immigration authorities.
  • Update you on the progress of your application.