5. Get a decision

Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) can decide to do one of the following:

  • give the sponsored person outside Canada a visa to come here
  • give your or in Canada permanent resident status
  • refuse your sponsorship application and refuse the sponsored person’s application for permanent residence

IRCC will send their decision in a letter.

If IRCC refuses the sponsorship application

If IRCC refuses your application to sponsor your spouse outside of Canada, you may be able to appeal the decision to the Immigration Appeal Division of the Immigration and Refugee Board (IRB).

You have 30 days to start your appeal, from the time you get the letter from IRCC saying they refused the application. Often, your or will get a refusal letter before you do.

It’s best to get legal advice and help with an appeal.

If you applied to sponsor your spouse or common-law partner in Canada you don’t have the right to appeal to the IRB. You can apply to the Federal Court to ask for a of the decision. You’ll need to get legal advice about your options.

If IRCC approves the application

If IRCC approves the application, they send your relative or family member a Confirmation of Permanent Residence. This is a document that says they’re approved for permanent resident status.

IRCC also sends them a permanent resident visa if they need one to travel to Canada.

These documents will have an expiry date. If a person is outside Canada, they must come here before that date and show these documents to a Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) officer when they arrive.

The CBSA officer looks at the documents, interviews the person, and makes the final decision about whether they get a Confirmation of Permanent residence.

If the CBSA officer agrees, the person will be allowed to enter Canada. If the CBSA officer disagrees, the person may not be able to enter Canada. But the sponsor has the right to appeal this decision to the Immigration Appeal Division (IAD).

If you’re sponsoring your spouse or common-law partner who’s in Canada, they’ll get a date for an interview at an IRCC office. The IRCC officer decides if they’ll get permanent resident status.

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