Parents and grandparents of Canadian citizens and Permanent Residents have a new option for visiting Canada. As of December 1, 2011, you may be eligible to apply for the Parent and Grandparent Super Visa and enjoy visiting your family in Canada for up to 2-years without the need to renew your status.
Who can apply
To apply for the Parent and Grandparent Super Visa, you must:
-be the parent or grandparent of a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident of Canada;
-be found admissible to Canada; and
-meet certain other conditions.
Note: You cannot include dependants in this application. Only your spouse or common-law partner is eligible to accompany you under this provision.
How to apply
In order to obtain a PGP Super Visa, you will need to submit an Application for a Temporary Resident Visa Made Outside of Canada [IMM5257] to a visa office and provide certain additional documents to support your application.
Note: You may request a multiple-entry visa for up to ten years if you submit the applicable fees along with your application.
Check the website of the visa office responsible for the country or region where you live for more information on fees, including how to pay them. To find the correct office for your country, see the List of Canadian visa offices here.
In addition to being found admissible to Canada, the parent or grandparent must also:
-provide a written commitment of financial support from their child or grandchild in Canada who meets a minimum income threshold;
-prove that they have bought Canadian medical insurance coverage for at least one year; and
-complete an Immigration Medical Examination.
How your application is processed?
Most applications for temporary resident visas are processed within a month or less. Processing times vary depending on the visa office.
After you send your application, it will be reviewed at the visa office to ensure it has been completed correctly and that it contains all the required documents. A visa officer will decide if an interview with you is necessary. If an interview is required, you will be notified of the time and place.
Visa officers consider several factors before deciding if a person is admissible. The person must be a genuine visitor to Canada who will leave by choice at the end of the visit. Among the things that could be considered are:
-the person’s ties to the home country;
-the purpose of the visit;
-the person’s family and financial situation;
-the overall economic and political stability of the home country; and
-an invitation from a Canadian host.
If your application is refused, your passport and other documents will be returned to you. You will also receive an explanation why your application was refused. If you sent fraudulent documents, they will not be returned. If your application is approved, your passport and documents will be returned to you with your visa.
PGP Super-Visa FAQs
1. What makes the PGP Super-Visa different from the current TRVs?
Currently, visitors to Canada usually may only visit for 6-months at a time. Most visitors who wish to stay longer must apply for an extension, and pay a new fee, every six months. With the Parent and Grandparent Super Visa, eligible parents and grandparents will pay fewer fees and have some certainty that they will be able to enjoy the company of their families in Canada for a longer period of time. CIC will be able to issue the visas, on average, within 8-weeks of the application. This means that instead of waiting for 8-years, a parent or a grandparent can come to Canada within 8-weeks.
2. Is the PGP Super-Visa a multi-entry visa? What is the difference between the 10-yr multi-entry visa & this one?
Yes, the Super Visa is a multi-entry visa that will provide multiple entries for a period up to 10-years. The key difference is that the Super Visa will have status periods for each entry that last up to 2-years, while the 10-year multiple entry visa status period for each entry is 6-months. The Super Visa is also available as a single-entry visa, if that is the applicant’s preference.
3. I’m eligible for the PGP visa, but I also have a dependent living with me, will s/he also get the PGP Super-Visa?
No. Dependants of parents and grandparents are not eligible for the Super Visa. They remain eligible to apply for regular visitor visas, though.
4. I’m from a country whose citizens do not require a visa for Canada, am I still eligible for the PGP visa to enjoy 2-yrs. stay?
Yes, if you are from a country whose citizens are not required to have a visa to enter Canada, you are eligible for a Parent and Grandparent Super Visa. Simply:
-Apply for a Temporary Resident Visa (no fee required) at a Canadian visa office;
-Undergo a medical examination;
-Provide the supporting documents, including proof of your relationship to a Canadian citizen or a PR; and
-proof of their financial support during your stay in Canada.
-You will also need proof that you have purchased Canadian medical insurance.
If you have met all the criteria, you will be issued a letter which you will present to a BSO at the POE when you arrive in Canada. The officer may authorize your visit to Canada for up to 2-years.
5. I have an ongoing Family Sponsorship PR application, can I yet apply for the PGP Super-Visa?
Family re-unification cases who have applied for permanent residency will definitely be eligible for the PGP Super-Visa as well, without withdrawing their PR application.
The new PGP Super-Visa is part of the Conservative government’s plan to battle an enormous backlog of about 165,000 parents and grandparents who are trying to join family in Canada. Immigration Minister Jason Kenney said, “The department informs me that they’re confident that the approval rate for these PGP Super-Visas will actually be very high”, last week at an appearance before a parliamentary committee.
CIC expects that this grandly named “Parent and Grandparent Super-Visa” will increase the number admitted by more than 60% in 2012.
The Canadian Government is likely to stop accepting PR applications from parents and grandparents of Canadian residents, announcing this new ‘super visa’ as a replacement… however, the same hasn’t yet been declared.