How to Sponsor a Spouse From Philippines

The Family Sponsorship Canada program allows you to sponsor a relative or spouse from the Philippines. To be eligible, you must meet the following requirements:

  • Be at least 18 years old
  • Be a Canadian citizen, a Canadian Permanent resident, or an Indian as prescribed in the Canadian Indian Act.

If you have fallen in love with a Filipino citizen, you will need to marry them before you can sponsor them for immigration to Canada.

In the Philippines, marriage follows a civil law system, and only civil marriages are legally recognized. However, you can also have a religious ceremony, but it must be conducted after the civil marriage. Religious leaders who do not adhere to this rule may face penalties.

Marriages in the Philippines take place in civil status offices or local government units such as towns, municipalities, and cities. These offices are responsible for issuing marriage certificates. It is important to ensure that the marriage takes place where the Filipino resident has legal residence. However, if desired, it is possible to change the legal residence easily for a more suitable wedding location.

Please note that specific requirements and processes may vary, and it is recommended to consult the official website of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) or seek professional advice for the most accurate and up-to-date information regarding sponsoring a spouse from the Philippines to Canada.

Bring Your Spouse to Canada

Here's how we can help you:

  • Formulate a strategy based on your particular circumstances.
  • Collect and review supporting documentation to sufficiently establish the genuineness of your relationship.
  • Prepare you and your spouse or partner for any requested interviews.
  • Provide expert legal submissions in support of your application.
  • Communicate with the immigration authorities on your behalf to ensure you don’t miss anything, which could lead to significant delays.

If you’re looking for an immigration lawyer for spousal sponsorship, Matthew Jeffery has over 20 years of experience and specializes in handling spousal sponsorships with high success rates. To see if you qualify for spousal sponsorship, fill out our FREE Sponsorship Assessment form.

Additional Documentation: Some LCRO Requirements

In certain cases, specific Local Civil Registrar Offices (LCROs) in the Philippines may require additional documentation for the marriage certificate application. These additional requirements may include:

  • Certificate of Attendance in a Pre-Marital Counseling or Family Planning Center: Some LCROs may require proof of attendance in a pre-marital counseling or family planning program. This certificate ensures that couples receive appropriate guidance and information before getting married.

  • Community Tax Clearance: A community tax clearance certificate may be necessary, indicating that you have fulfilled your tax obligations to the local government unit.

  • Valid IDs: LCROs may require at least two valid identification cards, such as passports, driver's licenses, or government-issued IDs. These help establish your identity and eligibility to marry.

  • Moral Character Reference: A moral character reference from a reputable individual, such as a community leader or employer, may be requested to attest to your character and suitability for marriage.

  • Photocopy of the Foreigner's Passport: If you are the foreign spouse, a photocopy of your passport may be required as part of the documentation.

Living Together for Over 5 Years: An Alternate Scenario

If you and your partner have cohabited for more than five years, you may be exempt from obtaining a marriage license. However, this exemption applies only if there were no legal inhibitions during your cohabitation, such as previous marriages that have not been legally dissolved.

Sponsoring Your Spouse to Canada: Meeting the Criteria

To become a sponsor, you must fulfill certain eligibility requirements, including:

  • Being at least 18 years old.
  • Being a Canadian citizen or permanent resident.
  • Either living in Canada or demonstrating your intention to reside there once the application is approved.
  • Demonstrating your ability to meet the basic financial needs of your spouse.

Processing Time and Verification: What to Expect

The verification of your eligibility as a sponsor by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) typically takes around 39 days. The processing time for your Filipino spouse's application, if they are outside of Canada, is approximately 12 months. However, if your spouse is already present in Canada, the verification process can be completed within four months, followed by an eight-month processing time for the sponsored person's application.

Seek Professional Assistance: Making the Journey Smoother

To ensure a smooth and successful sponsorship process, it is highly recommended to consult a professional immigration lawyer with expertise in spousal sponsorships. They can guide you through the intricacies of the process, help you gather all the necessary documents, ensure your eligibility as a sponsor, and provide insights into unfamiliar laws and regulations. The Law Office of Matthew Jeffery specializes in spousal sponsorships, with over 20 years of experience and a high success rate in bringing spouses and partners from the Philippines to Canada. Seeking professional assistance can greatly contribute to a smoother journey and increase the chances of a successful sponsorship.

Embark on this journey with confidence, knowing that professional support is available to navigate the complexities of sponsoring your beloved spouse from the Philippines to the welcoming land of Canada.

Frequently Asked Questions - Sponsoring a Spouse from the Philippines to Canada