Your gateway to Canada


Immigration Newsweek

Immigration Newsweek

By: Atty. Henry Moyal

Q. I came to Canada as a single mother as a caregiver. It took almost 5 years to obtain permanent residence. Before being an immigrant I returned to the Philippines to marry my daughter’s father and returned to Canada just in time for my landing interview. I tried to sponsor my husband recently but it was refused as they told me that I did not declare my spouse. But no one at the airport or at landing interview asked me about my marital status. What am I supposed to do now? Is my child suppose to grow up without a father? How do I get around this?

A. This is a complex and problematic issue because you did not inform immigration about your marriage before being an immigrant and your spouse did not undergo routine medical/criminal checks. The onus is upon you to tell immigration of changes in status…..they do not need to ask. Yes, it would be nice if they did but again, it is an applicant’s responsibility. The result, unfortunately, is that you misrepresented yourself and “lied” at landing by being an immigrant as a single person when in fact you were married. The problem is now twofold:

1) Under regulation R117(9)(d) your spouse is not a family class member and cannot be sponsored (because you did not declare him), and
2) You misrepresented yourself and it is possible that enforcement branch may come after you to start deportation proceedings and take away your PR card.

It sounds drastic but it could happen. The good news is that you have a child (which I assume is a Canadian Citizen) and it is unlikely you will be removed. It is also a good idea to look into any applicable humanitarian and compassionate grounds to overcome your predicament. Some recent cases have approved such cases on those grounds.

Q. Under the new caregiver program I read that in order to become an immigrant an applicant must have completed a one year post secondary diploma in Canada or equivalent abroad. I only completed high school in the Philippines and one year of college. Is it worth applying for permanent residence? Can I obtain the extra year in Canada while I’m in Canada after working 24 months?

A. You are correct in that under the new pathway for PR as a caregiver you must have proficiency in English and at least a one year post secondary credential. If you only completed high school in the Philippines then you will be refused. Do not apply under you qualify. I suggest you look into obtaining a study permit after working in Canada for 24 months, then complete a one year program in Canada at a school and then apply for permanent residence.

Q. I entered Canada as a student from the Philippines. I was married in Manila but recently obtained a divorce in Ontario. I am now marrying my Canadian boyfriend but my passport still has my old married name. Can I apply for the sponsorship using my birth name?

A. When you apply you need to use the name as per your passport. As you know the country of the Philippines does recognize divorce and will not accept the Ontario divorce. In my experience, the Philippine consulate will not change your passport to your birth name so you need to apply first and then change name later.

• Note: Canada Immigration has changed the sponsorship forms again and will no longer accept old forms after March 15, 2018. Applications received after March 15, 2018 will be returned unprocessed if the old versions of the forms are used.

Attorney Henry Moyal is a certified and licensed immigration lawyer in Toronto, Ontario.
The above article is general advice only and is not intended to act as a legal document.
Send questions to Attorney Moyal by email or call 416 733 3193