Sponsors assume a legal obligation to help the applicant being sponsored. Therefore, sponsors must meet certain income requirements set out by the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act.
Sponsors and Co-Sponsors must be Canadian Permanent Residents or Canadian Citizens over the age of eighteen years of age. Sponsors and Co-Sponsors must be residing in Canada, or if a Canadian Citizen, show that they plan on returning to Canada with the sponsored relative. Sponsors and Co-Sponsor cannot be bankrupt, in default of a previous undertaking to sponsor, in prison, under a removal order or charged with a serious criminal offense.
The Sponsors and any Co-Sponsor are responsible for providing the essential needs for the applicant being sponsored and their dependents for a period of three to twenty years after their relative’s arrival in Canada. In the event the Canadian Sponsor fails to support the Foreign National, and the Foreign National receives social assistance, the authorities may take legal recourse to be reimbursed for any money given to the sponsor.
Co-sponsors become necessary when a single individual cannot meet the minimum financial requirements for Parent and Grandparent sponsorship. Married and common-law partners who are Canadian Permanent Residents or Canadian citizens may be Co-sponsors. Co-Sponsors assume the same obligations and responsibilities as the sponsor must also sign the application forms for sponsorship, and undertake to support the sponsoree when they arrive in Canada.