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Parent and Grandparent Sponsorship Program Update: New Invitations to be Sent to Applicants in the 2020 Expression of Interest Pool

On September 08, 2023, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) announced an update to the Parent and Grandparent Sponsorship Program.

IRCC announced that the program will not be accepting new Expressions of Interest (EOIs) at this time. Rather than opening the program to new submissions, they will be selecting potential sponsors from the pool of candidates who submitted an EOI in 2020. Invitations will be sent to 24,200 potential sponsors, with the goal of receiving 15,000 complete applications. Invitations will be sent over the course of two weeks, starting on October 10, 2023. Potential sponsors who submitted an EOI in 2020 should monitor the email address they used to submit the EOI at the time.

IRCC has indicated that they are selecting again from the 2020 pool of candidates due to the number of forms remaining in the pool from 2020.  However, there are problems with this approach. Many of the potential sponsors who submitted an EOI in 2020 may no longer meet the requirements to sponsor a parent or grandparent, due to changes in their income, martial status, country of residence, or family size over the last three years. Parents and grandparents may have experienced changes in their personal circumstances which result in their no longer being able or willing to pursue Canadian immigration. In our view, IRCC’s immigration levels plan target for the parent and grandparent sponsorship program would be better served by opening the program to new intake, and we anticipate they will do so in 2024.

Potential sponsors who are not able to submit an Expression of Interest this year can apply for a Super Visa for their parent or grandparent.  The Super Visa allows stays in Canada as a visitor for up to five (5) years continuously.  Visas can be issued for a duration of up to ten (10) years and allow for multiple visits.