Sun | Aug 20, 2017

Immigration Corner | How do I get to Canada?

Published:Tuesday | April 18, 2017 | 4:00 AM

Dear Ms Powell,

I recently had a child for a Canadian man. He wants to sponsor me and the child. He says that I'm to see about the papers. What papers do I need, and where do I submit the application? He says that he doesn't have any financial problems and will sponsor us, but he just doesn't have the time right now to do the paperwork. Could I just do the paper work myself and send it in on his behalf?

- NY

Dear NY,

Your child could already have a right to Canadian citizenship if his father is a Canadian citizen and able to meet certain requirements. If your child has a right to Canadian citizenship, then there is no need to do a sponsorship application for him/her. The correct thing to do would be to submit an application- for-citizenship certificate and then apply for a Canadian passport for your child.

If the child's father is not a first-generation Canadian citizen, or if he is a permanent resident, then a sponsorship application should be submitted for both you and the child at the same time.

A citizen or permanent resident can sponsor his spouse or common law partner as well as any dependent child, 18 years and under, provided that all the parties involved are able to satisfy the requirements. You will need to provide proof that you are in a

legitimate relationship.

The sponsor will need to provide proof that he can provide for you financially and undertake to be responsible for you and your child for a number of years even after you become a permanent resident. This undertaking means that neither you nor your child can receive social assistance from the government during the period of undertaking. If you do, then your sponsor will need to repay the government.

To prove financial capability, your sponsor will need to provide his notice of assessments or tax returns as part of the application process.

The key issue to note is that both you and the sponsor will need to complete forms, sign and provide supporting documents so that Immigration Refugee and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) can assess your eligibility. If he wants to authorise you or a legal representative to assist him with the documents he will need to sign a form authorising you or the representative to act on his behalf. He would, however, need to review each form and sign them before they can be submitted.

Although finances are important, there are other important factors to consider. Your sponsor must prove that he has not breached any terms of sponsorship, has not received social assistance for any reason other than disability, and has not declared bankruptcy. Your sponsor must not have a history of being convicted of a violent or sexual offence or have committed an offence that caused bodily harm to a relative or you, or attempted or threatened to commit any of these offences.

The keys forms to be completed and signed by your sponsor are the application to sponsor, sponsorship agreement and undertaking, sponsorship evaluation and relationship questionnaire. You will need to complete and sign the required forms such as generic application form and family information.

The documents that you would need to submit for all the parties involved are passport; birth certificate; if divorced, your divorce certificate/decree absolute. You do not need to submit a police record or up-front medical when submitting the application, however, this will be required at a later date.

Since you are not married, you will need to submit a declaration of common-law union and provide additional proof such as photographs, letters, and social media acknowledgement of each other. Also, you will need to submit proof of financial dependency on each other and any other information to prove your relationship.

- Deidre S. Powell is a lawyer, mediato,r and notary public who is a member of the Jamaican and Ontario, Canada bars, with office located in Ottawa, Ontario. Her areas of practice are in immigration, personal injury, real estate, commercial, family, and administration of estates. She is on the roster of mediators for Ottawa, Toronto, and the Dispute Resolution Foundation of Jamaica. Email: info@deidrepowell.com. Subject line: Immigration Find her on Facebook: jamaicanlawyer. Call 876.922.4092/ 922.8899