2. Understand your options if IRCC says you don’t qualify to sponsor

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) first decides if you qualify to be a sponsor. This includes making sure you meet the rules about financial responsibilities, minimum income, and your status. For example, you cannot be a sponsor if you have been convicted of certain crimes.

If IRCC decides that you qualify to be a sponsor, they continue to process your application. You must continue to qualify to be a sponsor from the day the IRCC receives you application until the sponsored person becomes a .

If they decide you don't qualify to be a sponsor, what happens next depends on your answer to the first question on the sponsorship application form. You must choose whether you'll:

  • withdraw your application, or
  • proceed with the application.
Follow these steps to open and save an IRCC form in PDF format, using Adobe Acrobat Reader for both PC and Mac users. You can't open the forms on your phone or tablet.

If you said you'd withdraw your application, IRCC will refund you the money you paid, minus $75.

If you said you wanted to proceed with the application, IRCC continues processing it. During this time, IRCC may send you a letter asking for more information or documents before they make a final decision. This is called a procedural fairness letter. There's usually a deadline to give IRCC this information.

If you get this type of letter, it's important to get legal help.

If IRCC refuses your application, you may be able to appeal that decision to the Immigration Appeal Division of the (IRB).

If you applied to sponsor your spouse or common-law partner who is living in Canada, you don't have the right to appeal to the IRB. You'll need to get legal advice about your options.

If you appeal IRCC’s decision

The Immigration Appeal Division may be able to consider or reasons, and allow your or 's permanent resident application to proceed. They may be able to do this even if they agree with IRCC that according to the rules you don't qualify to be a sponsor.

H&C reasons include information about the hardship that you and others would face if you were permanently separated. This includes your , any children, and anyone else who is affected by the sponsorship.

Try to get legal help if you're appealing IRCC's decision.

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