Make a sponsorship appeal​

If you sponsored a family member and their application for a permanent residence visa was refused, you can appeal to the Immigration Appeal Division (IAD). This is where you can explain why the visa application should be accepted. This is called a sponsorship appeal.

Who can appeal

You can appeal to the IAD if you are a permanent resident or Canadian citizen who made an application to sponsor a family member to immigrate to Canada and the visa application was refused by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).

Who cannot appeal

You cannot appeal if the person you sponsored was found inadmissible to Canada. This means they are not allowed to come to Canada for one of these reasons:

  • being convicted of a crime that was punished in Canada with a sentence of six months or more in a Canadian prison
  • committing or being convicted of a crime outside Canada that would be punished in Canada by a maximum prison term of ten years or more
  • being involved in organized crime (for example, by smuggling people or laundering money)
  • being a security threat (for example, by trying to overthrow a government or taking part in terrorism)
  • violating human or international rights (for example, by committing war crimes)

A sponsored person may also be inadmissible if they lied on their application or withheld information. This is called a misrepresentation. However, the IAD may still accept appeals in such cases if the sponsored person is a spouse, common-law partner, or child.

Immigration appeals are public

Members of the public can attend most immigration appeal hearings. Information that you used in your appeal may appear in the IAD’s written decision. The decision may be published on an official website about legal decisions. If a member of the public or the media asks for a copy of the documents in your appeal, the IAD will provide one.

The only time this cannot happen is when you or the Minister’s Counsel have asked for and obtained a confidentiality order. This can happen if there are exceptional circumstances,  for example, if your safety or your child’s safety can be at risk.​

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