It is common misunderstanding that Canadians cannot sponsor their foreign spouses (wives, husbands and common-law partners) into Canada, if they don’t make any income. It is not true unless you are on a welfare assistance. Recipients of disability benefits are eligible to sponsor their loved ones (spouses) into Canada. The same applies to students. The government of Canada cannot deprive disabled people and students from their rights to have their wives and husbands here, in Canada, as permanent residents. It is not a disabled person’s fault that they have medical conditions preventing them from working and therefore not contributing into our economy.

It is important however to understand that, on the other hand, our immigration law, the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, is clear on prohibiting entry to Canada for those permanent resident status seekers who are unable to establish that they could support themselves financially. The applicant (a Canadian spouse) may be rejected if the facts of their case lead to infer that they will not be financially sustainable. At this point, everything that proves otherwise must be brought to the attention of the examining immigration officer. It is the applicant’s burden to satisfy an immigration official that he/she will survive financially, if granted entry to Canada as a permanent resident.

What proof is appropriate to provide at this point? Well, if you possess a diploma or certificate and demonstrate that you can find job in Canada, it will be useful to present the relevant documents to the attention of an immigration official (we call them “case officers”). Or, the fact that you have been working in your country prior coming to Canada may be a sufficient proof of your ability to also work in Canada. If, for example, both, the Sponsor and the Applicant are students at the time of bringing an application to sponsor and the application for a permanent residence in Canada, then I, as counsel, would recommend to turn to parents for support. Parents’ Affidavits or Statutory Declarations stating the fact that they are ready to help young couple financially until the time of completion of their studies would be satisfactory.


Sponsorship of your foreign spouse into Canada while you are student or on disability benefits.

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