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Getting to Canada Together: Your Easy Guide to a Canadian Visa through Marriage

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Canada is a great country to live in, with its diverse culture, beautiful scenery, and high quality of life. If you are married to a Canadian citizen or permanent resident, you may be eligible to apply for a Canadian visa through marriage and join your spouse in Canada.

However, the process of sponsoring your spouse and applying for permanent residence can be complex and confusing. That’s why we have created this easy guide to help you understand what you need, how it works, and some helpful tips to make your journey smoother.

What You Need

To apply for a Canadian visa through marriage, you will need to meet some requirements and provide some documents. Here are the main things you need:

A valid marriage certificate or proof of common-law partnership. You must show that your relationship is genuine and not entered into for immigration purposes. You can do this by providing evidence of your shared life, such as photos, joint bank accounts, travel tickets, etc.

A sponsor who is a Canadian citizen or permanent resident, and who is at least 18 years old. Your sponsor must agree to support you financially for three years after you become a permanent resident, and sign a sponsorship agreement with the government. Your sponsor must also meet some income and criminal background requirements.

An online application for permanent residence. You must fill out some forms online, pay the fees, and upload the required documents. You will also need to give your biometrics (fingerprints and photo) and undergo a medical exam and a police check.

A valid passport and travel document. You will need these to enter Canada once your application is approved. You may also need a temporary resident visa or an electronic travel authorization (eTA) depending on your country of origin.

How It Works

The process of applying for a Canadian visa through marriage can take several months or even years, depending on your situation and the processing times. Here are the main steps involved:

Step 1: Apply to sponsor your spouse. You (the sponsor) must download and complete the PDF forms in the application package, and digitally sign them along with your spouse (the principal applicant). You must then upload them to your spouse’s online application.

Step 2: Apply to be sponsored (permanent residence). Your spouse (the principal applicant) must sign in or create a Permanent residence online application portal account. They must fill out some digital forms online, pay the fees, and upload the required documents. They must also electronically sign for the entire application, including those of any other family members.

Step 3: Submit your application and wait for processing. After you submit your application, you will receive a confirmation number and an acknowledgment of receipt. You can use these to check the status of your application online. You may also receive requests for additional information or documents, or invitations for interviews. You must respond to these requests as soon as possible to avoid delays or refusals.

Step 4: Receive a decision on your application. If your application is approved, you will receive a confirmation of permanent residence (COPR) and a permanent resident visa (if applicable). You must enter Canada before these documents expire. If your application is refused, you will receive a letter explaining the reasons and your options to appeal or reapply.

Helpful Tips

Here are some tips to help you succeed in your application for a Canadian visa through marriage:

Be honest and consistent. Do not provide false or misleading information or documents, as this could result in your application being refused or your status being revoked. Make sure that your answers and documents match each other and reflect your current situation.

Be prepared and organized. Gather all the documents and information you need before you start your application. Follow the instructions and checklists carefully, and make sure that your forms are complete and accurate. Keep copies of everything you submit, and track your application status regularly.

Be patient and flexible. The processing times for spousal sponsorship applications vary depending on the country of origin, the type of application, and the volume of applications. You may experience delays or changes in your application due to factors beyond your control, such as COVID-19, travel restrictions, or system issues. Be ready to adapt to any changes and follow the latest updates and guidance from the government.


Getting a Canadian visa through marriage is a great way to reunite with your spouse and start a new life in Canada. However, it is not a simple or easy process. You need to meet some requirements, provide some documents, and follow some steps. You also need to be aware of the challenges and risks involved, and how to overcome them. By following this guide, you can increase your chances of success and make your journey smoother.


Do I become a Canadian citizen when I marry a Canadian?

No, you do not. Marrying a Canadian citizen does not give you citizenship. You must follow the same steps as everyone else who wants to become a citizen. You must first become a permanent resident, and then meet some residency, language, and knowledge requirements. You can then apply for citizenship after three years of living in Canada as a permanent resident

Can I get married in Canada while I’m a visitor or on a temporary visa?

Yes, you can. You do not have to be a citizen or permanent resident of Canada to get married in Canada. You just need to fulfill the conditions set by the province or territory where you want to get married. These may include getting a marriage license, providing identification documents, and having witnesses. However, getting married in Canada does not automatically make you eligible for a Canadian visa through marriage. You still need to apply for spousal sponsorship and permanent residence.

How long does it take to get a Canadian visa through marriage?

It depends on several factors, such as your country of origin, the type of application, and the volume of applications. The government publishes the estimated processing times for spousal sponsorship applications on its website. However, these are only averages and not guarantees. Your application may take longer or shorter than the estimated time. You can check the status of your application online to see the progress and updates.

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