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June 22, 2022

Canadian Immigration Law – Changes to Super Visas

Changes to Canadian immigration law. Beginning July 4, 2022, Canada will change the terms of Super Visas.

Over the years, we’ve seen changes to Canadian immigration law to mirror the changing needs of those who want to come to Canada. The most recent modification is to the visa program, announced recently by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). No doubt, it should be a welcome change for countless families across the country.

As of July 4, 2022, parents and grandparents of Canadian citizens and permanent residents can stay in Canada for at least five years under the super visa program. Additionally, if they apply while still in Canada, they have the option to extend their stay two more years.

Who is eligible for Canada super visa?

The Canadian Super Visa is for Canadian citizens and permanent residents who would like their parents or grandparents to live with them here in Canada. With the parent and grandparent super visa, eligible parents and grandparents can visit family in Canada for up to two years without the need to renew their status.

Super visas are not new. The federal government introduced the super visa program over a decade ago to help Canadian families reunite with family in Canada for an extended period of time. The super visa was conceived as an alternative to the popular Parents and Grandparents Program (PGP). The PGP offers permanent residence but the demand far exceeded the number of spots available. In a given year, the IRCC receives interest from some 200,000 sponsors but offers only about 20,000 immigration spots through the PGP.

Under a regular visitor visa, the length of stay is six months or less. In 2018, over 6,000,000 visas and electronic travel authorizations were issued to visitors, international students, and temporary workers. Every year since it was introduced, the government has issued approximately 17,000 super visas. As with the former version of the expanded visas, they’re valid for up to 10 years and, during this time, can be used for multiple entries.

Super visas will help families stay connected

As stated by Immigration Minister Sean Fraser, “Families are at the heart of Canadian society.”

“The enhancements to the super visa program allow family members to reunite for longer in Canada, which helps everyday Canadian citizens and permanent residents succeed and contribute to society while affording their parents and grandparents invaluable opportunities to spend time with their family in Canada.”

With so many people stuck waiting, impatient for the government to process their immigration applications so they can come to Canada, the change will be all the more welcome. And save everyone a lot of time and stress.

The new super visas are not without restrictions. Host children or grandchildren must meet the minimum income requirement required by the IRCC. And, while international medical insurance by providers designated by the Minister to cover super visa recipients is now included in the program, applicants must pass a medical examination for eligibility. Applicants must provide proof of private health insurance from an approved insurance provider. The coverage is necessary so that visa holders can access emergency health care while they’re here without those costs falling to Canadian taxpayers.

Experts in Canadian immigration law, Eastman Law Office specializes in all types of immigration, citizenship, and refugee cases and applications.

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