The government of Canada's "Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC)" acknowledges the role that parents and grandparents play in a happy family life. For this reason, the government allows for a super visa that creates a flexible arrangement for families to meet on Canadian soil. This helps to keep families in touch when a parent or grandparent doesn’t wish to become a permanent resident.
In order to be considered eligible for the parent and grandparent super visa, the person entering the application must be a direct parent or grandparent of a permanent resident or a citizen of Canada.
This type of visitor visa for parents or grandparents does not apply to dependents of the parent or grandparent applying for this program. In the case where a dependent is the one entering an application, they must apply for their own visitor visa under another program.
Canadian border officers will meet those who apply for entry under the super visa at the border. As such, it’s suggested that the visa beneficiary have completed the necessary paperwork well in advance of arrival.
Before the application is accepted, the officer will consider the purpose of the parent or grandparent’s visit, along with the visitor's ties to his or her home country.
Since this type of visa is not for the purposes of living in Canada as a permanent resident, the officer will consider factors such as the stability of the country of origin, both financially and politically.
The super visa application may also take a look at the entire family’s financial situation. Invitations for the parent and grandparent must also be present for the application to go forth.
Before the application for a super visa goes through, the parent or grandparent must show that they have medical insurance sufficient to cover costs that may be incurred while receiving treatment in Canada. An official letter must also be issued by the child or grandchild, proving and pledging financial support for the benefactor of the super visa. Finally, before entering Canada, the parent or grandparent must complete a medical examination.
Electronic Travel Authorization
The previous system of visitor visas will end soon in favour of a new method of entry that visa-exempt foreign nationals must abide by. An electronic travel authorization, also known as an eTA, must be secured before entry is allowed into Canada. This doesn’t apply to those who have already secured a valid visitor visa.
Visa-Exempt Parents and Grandparents
If you’re already allowed to visit your children or grandchildren in Canada under a visa-exemption, you may wish to apply for a super visa nonetheless. All of the above requirements must still be met, and your passport must be authorized for an eTA if you’re arriving by air. Apply for the super visa at the visa office in your country before your trip, and they will determine if you’re able to stay for the full period of time when you visit. In this case, you’ll be able to stay for up to two years.
Multiple-Entry Visa Vs. Regular Visitor Visa
One of the biggest benefits of the super visa is the ability of the parent or grandparent to visit Canada multiple times over the period of a decade. You should keep in mind that even with the approved paperwork, your parent or grandparent will need to get an eTA when arriving by air. In fact, it’s recommended that you get an eTA before booking a flight to Canada.
Instead of a super visa, parents also have the option of trying to get a regular visitor visa, which only allows for a stay of up to six months, which can create frustration if multiple visits are planned in the future.
All visa applications are subject to general terms of inadmissibility in order to protect Canadian citizens from those who may attempt to compromise the nation's security. If the parent or grandparent has committed a violent crime, or has been part of a criminal or terrorist organization, the government will refuse him or her entry into the country. Any crimes committed in or outside of Canada that have resulted in a long prison sentence may also render the parent or grandparent ineligible.
People with financial problems or severe health problems may be denied entry into Canada. And if an applicant lies on a visa application, the government will consider that applicant ineligible.
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