Can I sponsor my child or my spouse or partner’s child?

1. Find out if the child is a dependent child

You can sponsor a biological or adopted child if they meet the definition of a .

For applications made on or after October 24, 2017, a child is dependent on their parents if they're:

  • younger than 22, and
  • not married or in a common-law relationship.

A child who's 22 or older is also dependent if they cannot support themselves financially because of a physical or mental condition, and they:

  • depend on a parent financially because of their condition, and
  • have continued to be dependent on the parents financially since before the age of 22.

If you applied to sponsor a child before October 24, 2017, the rules depend on your situation.

Continuing to qualify

The child must qualify as a dependent child on the date Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) receives the completed sponsorship application.

As well as qualifying based on their age, the child must also continue to qualify in all other ways until they become a . For example, you might apply to sponsor a child who's younger than 22 and then they get married or enter a common-law relationship before the application is processed. If this happens, they no longer qualify to be sponsored as a dependent child.

If a child is not dependent

If a child does not qualify as a dependent child, you can ask IRCC to approve the child's application for permanent residence on .

H&C grounds or reasons include proof of:

  • the child's connection to you and that they depend on you, and
  • the hardship you would both face if you were permanently separated.

It's a good idea to get legal help with this.

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