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Tuesday, July 23, 2024

Canadian Province Sets Limit on Family Sponsorship Visa Applications for Immigrants

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The Quebec province in Canada has put a limit on the number of family sponsorship visa applications. This can affect many people wanting to move, including those from Nigeria.

CIC News reports that Quebec will only accept 13,000 family sponsorship visa applications over the next two years.

This limit starts from June 26, 2024, until June 25, 2026.

The Limit

Out of the 13,000 applications, 10,400 will be for spouses, common-law partners, and children aged 18 and above.
The remaining 2,600 slots are for parents, grandparents, and other family members.
Once these slots are filled, Quebec won’t accept any more applications. Any extra applications will be sent back without being processed or charged.

  • The family sponsorship visa helps permanent residents or Canadian citizens bring their family members to live with them in Canada. 
  • This visa aims to keep families together and allow them to build their lives in Canada. 
  • Sponsors have to promise to support their family members financially, so they don’t rely on social assistance. 

Who is Exempt from the Limit

Even though many people are affected by this cap, some groups are not. These include:

  • A sponsor’s dependent children who are underage.
  • Children under age the sponsor plans to adopt. 
  • Orphaned children under the sponsorship like siblings, nephews, nieces, grandsons, or granddaughters. 
  • A sponsor’s adult child who depends on them due to a disability.
  • To be exempt, these individuals must not be married or in a common-law relationship.

Important Information

The reason for limiting family sponsorship visas is partially linked to Quebec’s housing crisis, worsened by too many temporary residents.

This has made housing in Quebec less available and more expensive.

Canada’s federal government also wants to reduce the total number of temporary residents.

  • In March 2024, Immigration Minister Marc Miller announced a plan to reduce temporary residents to five per cent of the population. Currently, that figure is 6.2 per cent. 
  • This change will affect foreign students, workers, and asylum seekers. However, essential workers in construction and healthcare are exempt due to labour shortages in these areas. 
  • These essential workers can keep entering Canada at the current rate until at least August 31, 2024.

Canada’s family sponsorship program is run by Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). Sponsors need to meet certain requirements, including being 18 years old or older and living in Canada. 

  • The application process has two steps: first, the sponsor submits their application, then the family member applies for permanent residence. 
  • Both applications are processed together. Sponsors must meet eligibility criteria, like income requirements. Extra care is given to orphaned underage relatives and other relatives under specific conditions.
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