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Steve_PE

Canadian Marriage

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Steve_PE

Hey Everyone,

I'm currently based in Port Elizabeth, South Africa. I'm in the process of building up the courage to ask my girlfriend to marry me after dating for 5 years :)

However she's Canadian and needs to stay there because of her kid. Can anyone direct me around the Canadian marriage laws? Knowing that I need to move up there, what do I need to apply for a working visa? Am I Allowed to work?

My profession is SAP consulting, which allows me to work remotely from time to time. If I'm not allowed to work in Canada for a period of time, will I be able to contract work from South Africa but be based in Canada?

Thanks,

Stephen

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Stefan

Ah, love. It makes the world go world go around, or at least it makes some of us go around the world.

There is such a thing as spousal sponsorship, for those in a marriage or common-law relationship. More details can be found on the CIC website (or search spousal sponsorship on this forum). I met my bokkie here in Canada while on a work permit (several renewals actually), got married and then she sponsored me for permanent residence.

It all takes time, so start soon - soon after you're married, or living together - and collect photos and details so that when the application is sent in, you can prove that the relationship is genuine. That's important for a spousal sponsorship kind of immigration.

Mind you, there are other ways of immigrating, and the info is on this forum.

Welcome, Stephen, good luck with the proposal and... everything else!

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Guest AdamC

Hey Steve

I recently married a Canadian (last year) and went through the spousal sponsorship route back in 2010.

I can’t speak for being sponsored by an employer in relation to your work, but I do have some knowledge of the spousal sponsorship route. I see that the rules have changed recently in that you must have lived with your common-law partner for two years prior to application (when I did mine back in 2010 it was one year).

Anyways, I assume after dating for 5 years you have likely lived together for at least two years.

You should review this link to find everything you need: http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/immigrate/sponsor/spouse-apply-who.asp

Timeline:

  • I suggest you get your application in ASAP. If you want to do this from outside Canada (i.e. from South Africa), it is posting the processing time as 22 months (Step 1 - 45 days / Step 2 – 21 months). See here: http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/information/times/perm-fc.asp
  • The “In Canada” option is shorter at 18 months for both steps.

Point to note: When I did my application – after Step 1, I received an open work permit which allowed me to work for any employer in Canada (Step 2 was the actual Permanent Residency granting)…if this is still the case, then most definitely apply from “outside Canada”. My assumption being that you should receive an open work permit after only 6 weeks…from there, make the move to Canada and wait until the PR is granted.

It is a common misconception (one that really bugs me) that people can gain full PR or citizenship simply by marrying a Canadian – this is not true.

As a final word of advice: Do not hire a lawyer for this application. I did and found it to be the biggest waste of money. The forms are simple and straightforward and assuming you can verify your relationship through emails, photos and shared address bills…it’s really straightforward.

Good luck with the proposal…

Adam

Edited by AdamC
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Janey

Congrats Steve!!

We did the spousal PR route from 'within Canada' as we did not want to be apart while waiting for PR. My husband came over and we married here and applied immediately. He could not work (also SAP) until he received his Stage 1 Work Visa. I am not sure if he would have been allowed to work remotely but I'm sure you can find the answer to this on CIC website.

The biggest question (I think) for you at this stage is ... are you applying from WITHIN Canada or from OUTSIDE? Both have challenges and it is a very personal decision.

Very exciting ...!!!!

Best of luck! jane

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Steve_PE

Hi Everyone,

Thanks for your replies. I'm off to Canada in July to speak to her parents about asking there daughter to marry me.

Our number one concern is financial, earning a single salary during the application process. It just a pity that companies don't offer work sponsorship visa in the SAP world.

Thanks again

Stephen

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