How to Successfully Immigrate to Canada as a Couple

How to Successfully Immigrate to Canada as a Couple

Feb 6, 2024

Canada stands as a welcoming haven for couples seeking to build a life together. Whether you’re engaged, married, or in a common-law relationship, Canada’s diverse immigration programs cater to your unique circumstances. This extensive guide aims to unravel the intricate pathways, shedding light on the various options available for couples aspiring to call Canada home.

Navigating the Path of Unity: Spousal Sponsorship


One of the most streamlined ways for a couple to migrate to Canada is through spousal sponsorship. This avenue is particularly beneficial if your spouse is already a Canadian citizen or permanent resident.

Eligibility Criteria:

To embark on this journey, the sponsoring partner must be at least 18 years old, a Canadian citizen or permanent resident living in Canada, and not facing legal challenges such as imprisonment or bankruptcy. Additionally, there are conditions like not being sponsored as a spouse within the last five years.

Proving the Relationship:

Proving the authenticity of your relationship is paramount. The nature of the proof depends on the category—spouse, common-law partner, or conjugal partner. From marriage certificates to evidence of shared finances and emotional ties, meticulous documentation is crucial.

Navigating Express Entry as a Couple

Express Entry Essentials:

Canada’s Express Entry system manages three primary immigration programs: the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP), the Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP), and the Canadian Experience Class (CEC). Couples aspiring to attain permanent residency through Express Entry can do so in two ways.

Dependent or Secondary Applicant:

The main applicant can either list the spouse, common-law partner, or conjugal partner as a dependent or name them as a secondary applicant. Each approach has its implications, impacting factors such as the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score and proof of funds requirements.

Decision-Making Process:

Choosing the right strategy depends on an assessment of each partner’s individual profile. The one with a stronger CRS score might opt to be the secondary applicant, claiming additional points for the partner’s profile.

Provincial Nominee Program: A Regional Welcome

Understanding PNP:

The Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) provides couples with another avenue to make Canada their home. Each province and territory operates its own PNP, welcoming skilled workers to contribute to their communities.

Main Applicant Dynamics:

Similar to Express Entry, the partner with the stronger work experience and education becomes the main applicant. This involves providing evidence of sufficient funds to settle in Canada.

Alternative Approach:

Alternatively, if both partners are eligible, they can apply separately to immigration programs and withdraw one application once an invitation to apply (ITA) is issued.

Open Work Permit: Supporting Financial Independence

Work Permit Basics:

Spouses and partners of Canadian citizens or permanent residents have the option to obtain an open work permit while their sponsorship application for permanent residence is being processed.

Eligibility Criteria:

To qualify for an open work permit, the foreign national must be a principal applicant who has submitted a permanent residence application, have a valid temporary resident status in Canada, and reside at the same address as their sponsor.

Financial Support During Processing:

An open work permit provides individuals with the opportunity to work for any employer in Canada, ensuring financial independence during the immigration application process.

How DEV Immigration Can Help:

DEV Immigration recognizes the intricacies of couple immigration, offering guidance with a team led by Registered Canadian Immigration Consultants (RCIC). Tailoring the process to each couple’s unique situation, DEV Immigration provides expert assistance, ensuring a smooth journey from spousal sponsorship to navigating Express Entry and beyond. Your dream of immigrating to Canada is in capable hands with DEV Immigration.

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