Canadian Immigration News

Find Out the Common Reasons Why Your Sponsorship Application Could Get Denied

4.75 minute read
"Most immigrants, after obtaining permanent residence in Canada, apply to sponsor their immediate family members. Permanent residents and Canadian citizens are authorized to sponsor their spouses, common-law partners, dependent children, parents and grandparents for permanent residence in Canada."
Written by My Visa Source Team
Updated on:  Jun 17, 2021
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Most immigrants, after obtaining permanent residence in Canada, apply to sponsor their immediate family members.

Permanent residents and Canadian citizens are authorized to sponsor their spouses, common-law partners, dependent children, parents and grandparents for permanent residence in Canada.

Canada provides the Family Class Sponsorship program with guidelines on how to sponsor your family members.

Family Class Sponsorship has 3 categories:

However, having an immediate family member sponsor your application does not make the process any easier or simple. Not following the rules and guidelines can lead to the rejection of your application. Therefore, it is important to assess your eligibility and avoid some common mistakes while applying for sponsorship.

What Are the Common Reasons for Denial of Your Sponsorship Application?

Ineligible Sponsor: 

Simply gaining permanent residency or citizenship does not make you an eligible sponsor. It only authorizes you to apply for sponsorship. 

You will be required to meet certain additional requirements based on who you are sponsoring. 

For example, if you are sponsoring your parents or grandparent, then you will be required to meet the Minimum Necessary Income requirement. However, there is no such requirement for sponsoring a spouse or dependent children. 

You must also not default on the repayment of loans, bonds or family support payments decided by the court. Additionally, you must have a clean criminal record. There must not be any record of failing to provide for the basic needs of a past sponsor. You should not be receiving any social assistance from the government. 

Ineligible to be Sponsored: 

As a family member being sponsored, you must meet the eligibility requirements for permanent residence in Canada. 

For example, you can not be sponsored if you are only engaged to the permanent resident. Only spouses can be sponsored through spousal sponsorships. 

You must also clear all the admissibility requirements to enter Canada. That means that you must not pose a security risk, be guilty of human or international rights violations, have a clean criminal record and no significant health issues.

You may have to attend an interview with an immigration official if you have a criminal record. The official will assess whether you can be rehabilitated. You could also get a record suspension or apply for a Temporary Resident Permit (TRP) to temporarily enter Canada to apply for rehabilitation

Undeclared Family Member: 

Since you are applying for sponsorship, you will be required to declare all of your family members in your application, even the ones you are not sponsoring. If you fail to declare all family members, you will be ineligible to apply for sponsorship in the future. This could also have an effect on your status as a permanent resident.   

Marriage of Convenience: 

It is a popular method of gaining permanent residence in Canada. Foreign nationals get married to permanent residents or Canadian citizens for the sole purpose of immigrating to Canada. This is known as the marriage of convenience. This is why sponsorship applications require detailed information about the personal relationship between the sponsor and the foreign national.  

You will be required to provide proof of your relationship through the beginning of marriage and other aspects of your relationship. If you fail to provide sufficient evidence about the validity of your relationship, then your sponsorship application will be denied. Immigration officials always look for red flags in sponsorship applications.

Permanent Resident Living Abroad: 

As a permanent resident, you can not sponsor your immediate family if you are not residing in Canada. Only Canadian citizens can apply for sponsorship while living abroad. However, your application will be denied if you are living abroad. You must demonstrate an intent to reside in Canada to sponsor your family members for permanent residency.

Health Risk: 

Sponsored foreign nationals will be required to go through medical examinations before entering the country. If they have any medical conditions that can pose a serious public health risk or put excessive demand on the health and social services, then their application will be denied. Sponsored applicants are required to clear admissibility requirements much like other permanent residency applicants.


You and sponsored family members will be required to provide credible and accurate information in your application. Any accidental or deliberate lapse in providing the right information will result in denial. Information required will be related to details of a personal relationship with the sponsor, financial situation, health and medical examinations, character certificates, etc. You must provide true and accurate information to reduce the risk of getting denied.

Misrepresentation simply refers to providing inaccurate information. It can happen accidentally or through deliberate action. If you knowingly conceal facts, there could be serious implications. If you are discovered misrepresenting, you could be denied entry into Canada for 5 years.

What to Do If Your Sponsorship Application is Denied?

If your sponsorship application is denied, then you can appeal to the Immigration Appeal Division (IAD) within 30 days of receiving the refusal.

The IAD will review your appeal and make a decision. If the IAD finds that your appeal can be resolved without a hearing, then they may use the method of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR).

If your appeal goes to ADR, then you would have to attend an informal meeting with the Minister’s counsel and a member of IAD. However, if your appeal is processed, then you will be required to attend the hearing. It is best to hire an immigration litigation lawyer to guide you through this process.

If your appeal is successful, then your sponsorship application will be transferred to the government body of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). IRCC will either grant permanent residence to your sponsored family member or reject your application again.

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