Family reunification program new and improved

The Parents and Grandparents Program interest to sponsor form will be available to potential sponsors beginning at noon EST on Jan. 28. The program promises a new and improved intake process.

The federal government assures it has addressed concerns about the previous intake process and taken steps to provide a first-in-first-served approach that will keep the application process fair for all while remaining an easy-to-access electronic method for applicants.

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) will accept interest to sponsor submissions for a limited time and then invite potential sponsors to submit a complete application, in the order their submissions were received until the 2019 cap of 20,000 complete applications is reached. That’s four times the number of applications accepted in 2015, the government reports.

“Family reunification is an immigration priority for the Government of Canada,” said Ahmed Hussen, immigration, refugees and citizenship minister. “It supports Canada’s economic prosperity and it further strengthens our communities. Parents and grandparents often help care for children, increasing their parents’ ability to work and study, and to make meaningful contributions to their communities. In reuniting Canadian citizens and permanent residents with their parents and grandparents, not only do we help these families to succeed – doing so also benefits our entire country.”

Interested potential sponsors should familiarize themselves with the new intake process, which requires them to upload a copy of a status-in-Canada document when submitting their interest to sponsor form. The form includes features to help IRCC detect duplicate submissions and potential fraud.

Potential sponsors should submit an interest to sponsor form as soon as possible once it’s available online, after confirming they meet the necessary minimum income requirements. The onus is on potential sponsors to ensure they’re eligible before submitting the form. Once invited, potential sponsors will have 60 calendar days from the date of their invitation to ensure IRCC receives their complete application for sponsorship.

In 2018, after removing duplicates, IRCC received 93,836 interest to sponsor forms. Learn more at this link: Help Centre: Frequently asked questions about sponsorship of parents and grandparents.

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