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Marriage Fraud: How Do I Prove My Spousal Application Is Legitimate?

Blog posted on by Evelyn Ackah in Family Class and Spousal Sponsorship

Marriage Fraud: How Do I Prove My Spousal Application Is Legitimate?

Canada places a high value on family reunification, and Immigration, Refugee and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) The Family Class Application Spousal Sponsorship path is a way for a permanent resident or citizen of Canada to sponsor their spouse or common-law partner (including same-sex partner) to live in Canada. There are separate applications for spouses already living in Canada as well as an application for spouses currently living outside of the country.

Spousal sponsorship is a legal contract with the Government of Canada. Canada's IRCC has strict requirements for spousal sponsors and obligations for sponsors including:

    • The sponsor must provide financial support for 3 years even if the marriage or relationship fails.
    • The foreign applicant must provide required documentation such as birth certificates, marriage certificates, passports and other documents requested by the immigration officers
    • Pay all spousal sponsorship fees

    The immigration officer will conduct an interview with the Canadian sponsor and the foreign applicant to verify that your relationship or marriage is legitimate. The immigration officer does not have a specific list of questions to ask, the questions will vary depending on each unique spousal sponsorship application but

    What Is Marriage Fraud?

    It is a crime for a foreign national to enter into a false marriage and marry a Canadian citizen or permanent resident for the purpose of entering or working in Canada. IRCC considers marriage fraud and sham marriages, including a marriage of convenience, a serious issue and Canadian citizens or permanent residents who engage in marriage fraud for the purpose of immigration may be charged with a crime.

    Foreigners who engage in marriage fraud in order to move to Canada face serious penalties:

    • IRCC will refuse your visa
    • You will be banned from travel to Canada for up to 5 years
    • Marriage fraud will be included on your permanent immigration record
    • You face deportation from Canada

    Podcast: Canada Spousal Sponsorships & Work Permits

    Canada takes all forms of immigration fraud seriously, including marriage fraud. It’s a serious crime to lie or to give false information or documents to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada. This type of fraud is called “misrepresentation.” Whether your fraud is intentional or unintentional you are responsible if there are errors in your application or you participate in marriage fraud. Both the sponsor and the foreigner seeking immigration to Canada are at risk.

    Spousal Sponsorship Lawyer

    Spousal sponsorship applications can be confusing. We advise that you consult an immigration lawyer who has experience in Family Class applications so that you don't waste time or money - or risk having your immigration application rejected.

    At Ackah Law, we handle many spousal sponsorship cases. We need to believe that your relationship is legitimate and to see all the paperwork and photographs, hear the story of the relationship and how many years you've been together, how much travel you've done back and forth or together, etc in order to be satisfied that this is a legitimate and honest relationship; that is a marriage or a spousal relationship of common-law. If we take your spousal sponsorship case, then we believe your relationship is real, that your application has the necessary documentation and that you will be able to successfully complete your immigration application and interviews.

    If you find out you married somebody and you think it's for love, and then they come to Canada and they abandon you or you find out that they only married you to come to Canada, that is misrepresentation. The victim of marriage fraud also has a responsibility to contact IRCC and advise them of the situation.

    if you have any questions on spousal sponsorship or marriage fraud that you'd like to discuss before you apply, please contact Ackah Immigration Business Law at (403) 452-9515 Ext. 100 or 1-800-932-1190 or email us directly to find out if you are qualified to move to Canada.


    Evelyn Ackah

    Founder/Managing Lawyer

    Ms. Ackah is passionate about immigration law because it focuses on people and relationships, which are at the core of her personal values. Starting her legal career as a corporate/commercial ...

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