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Immigration Library™

Federal Family Class – Adopted Children (FSPA)

  • S.D: Sponsor-driven

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Under Adopted Children subsection of family class, a Canadian citizen or permanent resident may adopt and sponsor a child (under 18 years of age) for Canadian permanent residence.  

Both the Canadian citizen or permanent resident (also called the ‘sponsor') and the foreign national (the ‘sponsored adopted child') must be approved in order for the sponsored adopted child to receive a visa.

Family Class sponsorship is divided to the following sub-categories:

  • Spouse, common-law, and conjugal partners or dependent children (➨Page)
  • Parents and grandparents (➨Page)
  • Other relatives (➨Page)
  • Adopted children (this page)

Ready to take the next step towards your Canadian immigration journey? Fill out the form below and embark on your path to new opportunities.



1- Sponsor’s Status in Canada

The adopted child’s sponsor must be a Canadian citizen, a permanent resident of Canada, or a person registered in Canada as an Indian (indigenous people);

If the sponsor is living outside Canada, they cannot sponsor the adopted child.

After completion of adoption process from abroad, the sponsor can bring the adopted child using immigration process or citizenship process. This page explains the sponsorship which is the immigration process.

You must use the immigration (sponsorship) process if (some exceptions may apply):

  • neither parent was a Canadian citizen when the adoption took place, or
  • both parents are permanent residents at the time of adoption.

You may use either citizenship process OR immigration Process if:

  • at least one adoptive parent was a Canadian citizen at the time of adoption.

You must use the citizenship process if (some exceptions may apply):

  • the adopted person will not live in Canada immediately after the adoption and citizenship processes are complete.

Note: Some countries require that the adoption be completed in Canada. Regardless of parent’s status, in these cases the Immigration (Permanent Resident) process should be used.

2- Sponsor’s Age

Sponsor must be at least 18 years old.

3- Adopted Child’s Age

The adopted child must be under 18 years old or if the adopted person is 18 or over, a genuine parent-child relationship must have existed between the person and the adoptive parent before the person reached 18.

4- Sponsor’s Financial Ability

The sponsor must be able to provide for the basic needs of the adopted child. He/she must sign an undertaking which promises support for these basic needs:

  • Rent or mortgage, along with utility bills.
  • Food and personal toiletries, like shampoo, soap and toothpaste.
  • Clothing and other items necessary for daily life.
  • Medical costs not covered by public health insurance, such as dental and eye care.

The length of undertaking is ten (10) years or until the child reaches the age of 25 – whichever comes first, starting when the child becomes permanent resident.

During this period, if child receives social assistance from government of Canada, the sponsor must repay it.

Only if the child has a child of his/her own, the sponsor must show that in the previous taxation year or the last twelve (12) months preceding the date of application, he/she has made the minimum income not less than the Statistics Canada’s Low Income Cut-Off (LICO) that was effective in that taxation year (➨ Appendix 2).

If the sponsor lives in Quebec, they must only meet the Quebec’s immigration sponsorship requirements after IRCC finds them eligible.

The sponsor (and the co-signer, if applicable) must show that he/she has made the minimum income for the past twelve (12) months only if the sponsored child has a child of his/her own (➨Appendix 8).

5- Sponsor Ineligibility

Sponsor may not be eligible to sponsor an adopted child in some cases, such as:

  • if the sponsor did not meet the requirements of a previous sponsorship agreement;
  • if the sponsor defaulted on a court-ordered support order, such as alimony or child support;
  • if the sponsor has been convicted of a violent criminal offence—depending on the nature of the offence, when it occurred and whether a record suspension was granted; or
  • if the sponsor does not live in Canada now and does not plan to live full-time in Canada when the child becomes a permanent resident.

Sponsor may also not be eligible to sponsor if he/she:

  • is in jail, prison, or a penitentiary
  • didn’t pay an immigration loan, a performance bond and/or family support payments;
  • didn’t give the financial support based on a sponsorship agreement to sponsor someone else in the past;
  • declared bankruptcy and are not discharged;
  • receives social assistance for a reason other than a disability;
  • sponsored another relative in the past and didn’t meet the terms of the sponsorship agreement;
  • were convicted of attempting, threatening to commit or committing a violent criminal offence, any offence against a relative or any sexual offence inside or outside Canada (depending on details of the case, such as type of offence, time of offence, etc);
  • is under a removal order.

Ready to take the next step towards your Canadian immigration journey? Fill out the form below and embark on your path to new opportunities.



Most inter-country adoptions will take place in the child’s home country. Each country has different laws and procedures covering adoption by foreigners. For instance, some countries allow adoptions outside the child’s home country, while others only permit adoption inside the country. Not all countries allow adoptions.

If the adopted child is related to the Canadian sponsor, different rules from the provinces and/or the country of origin may apply.

The immigration process allows two types of adoptions of children under 18. Depending on the law of the child’s home country, the inter-country adoption must either:

  • be completed outside of Canada; or
  • be completed in Canada.

For Canadian immigration purposes, all inter-country adoptions must:

  • be legal in the child’s home country and in the province or territory where the sponsor lives;
  • end the legal relationship between the adopted child and his or her biological parents;
  • meet the requirements of sponsor’s province or territory, including a home study;
  • create a genuine parent–child relationship between the sponsor and the child;
  • be in the best interests of the child;
  • not be primarily to gain permanent resident status for the child in Canada.

Children adopted outside Canada may be sponsored to come to Canada if:

  • informed consent has been given by both of child’s biological parents (if they are living).
  • the child has been legally adopted outside Canada.
  • the requirements of the Hague Convention have been met, if they apply.


Step 1: Adoption Process

International adoption (also called inter-country adoption) is a process that recognizes an individual or couple as the legal and permanent parent(s) of a child from another country. An international adoption complies with the laws of both the sending and receiving countries. Not all countries allow international adoptions.

Adoptions are the responsibility of the provinces and territories in Canada. The adoptive parent should contact the provincial or territorial adoption authority (➨ for information on eligibility to adopt and the accompanying requirements that must be met.

When the adoptive parent has received a Letter of No Objection from the province or territory, he/she can start the International adoption process and apply to sponsor the adopted child.

The provincial or territorial adoption Central Authority will:

  • Tell the adoptive parent(s) if they need to contact a licensed adoption agency
  • Advise on the adoptions laws of the country from where the adoptive parent(s) want to adopt
  • Explain the requirement of the Hague Convention on Inter-country Adoptions

Step 2: Submit Your Application (Immigration Process)

Sponsorship process of the adopted child may be started as soon as the Canadian adoptive parent decides to adopt, if the country from which he/she plans to adopt is known.

If you are eligible for Citizenship Process as described in the “Minimum Requirement” section, please see (➨Page).

  1. The adoptive parent(s) must apply to become a sponsor.
  2. The adopted child must apply for permanent residence.

Submission of applications for sponsorship is online. The applicant (adopted child) or their guardian must submit the application using the IRCC Permanent Residence Portal (PR Portal) (➨

If the person being sponsored is under 18, the sponsor or their guardian can fill out the forms and sign them on their behalf.
Sponsorship Application
Apply Online (PR Portal)
Official Program Guide:
IRCC Application Fees:
Each child: $150
Biometrics: $85

(per child if applicable)

The application fee includes a

sponsorship fee of $75

Processing Time:
Not Available
Document Checklist:


1-888-242-2100 (in Canada)

1-613-944-4000 (outside Canada)

Web Form:

Visa Office:

If the application is complete, the applicant (adopted child) or their guardian will receive a letter or an email confirming that the file has been received and accepted for processing. This letter is called the Acknowledge of Receipt (AOR) and will include the IRCC file number.
Once you have received your acknowledgement of receipt, you can create an online account and link your application to it. By creating an account, you will be able to receive email updates and a more detailed case status.
If the sponsor is refused, he/she can choose to continue processing the application for permanent residence or withdraw.
  • If the application is withdrawn, all fees minus the $75 CAN sponsorship fee will be refunded.
  • If the application is continued, the application fee will not be refunded.

In most cases, you always should select option A. The only reason to choose option B, is for cases where the sponsor is in fact ineligible to sponsor, but they believe at appeal they can be accepted (e.g. on humanitarian and compassionate grounds).

If the sponsor is approved, they will receive a correspondence from IRCC stating that they have met the eligibility requirements to sponsor you (and your family, if applicable). Once the sponsor is approved, the assessment of your application for permanent residence will be started.
Quebec Undertaking Application (If the adopted child’s sponsor resides in Quebec)
If the adoptive parent is a resident of Quebec, they will not be required to submit an undertaking of assistance for the child at the time of application to IRCC. Once the sponsor receives the eligibility approval, they must submit an undertaking application to the Quebec government in order to assess sponsor’s necessary income.

Once the sponsorship application has been sent to IRCC, your sponsor must prepare the Quebec undertaking application in advance, including the application for your selection certificate with all required documents, so that the sponsor sends it to the Quebec government as soon as he or she receives an invitation from IRCC to proceed.

The sponsor must enclose a copy of this correspondence (sponsor eligibility letter) with the undertaking application to the Quebec government.

If the sponsor’s undertaking application is accepted, a Certificat de sélection du Québec (CSQ – Québec Selection Certificate) will be issued to the adopted child The decision will be forwarded directly to the Canadian visa office covering the country of child’s residence.

Quebec Undertaking Application
Submit Application:  

Ministère de l'Immigration, de la

Francisation et de l'Intégration

285, rue Notre-Dame Ouest, 4e étage

Montréal (Québec) H2Y 1T8


Official Program Guide: 
Application Fee:  
Main applicant: $319
Each dependent: $128
Processing Time: 
Document Checklist:


Tel: 514-864-9191

Fax: 514-864-8158 (general questions)


Step 3: Biometrics

During processing, the child will be asked to submit his or her biometrics.

Any child over 14 years old needs to give fingerprints and photo (biometrics) for permanent residence application submitted. The child will be contacted to give his/her biometrics and he/she will have 30 days from the date on the letter to do it.

If the child is in Canada, he/she may qualify for an exemption from having to give biometrics.

In order to give biometrics one needs to go to an official biometrics collection service point and give biometrics in person.

Before going, check the location’s website for its services and fees at (➨ Depending on the location, one may need to make an appointment.

Step 4: Medical Checks

After the assessment of the application based on the eligibility criteria of the program is completed, a decision is being made on the application based on the results of medical exam.

The adopted child must have an immigration medical exam. Instructions on how to get the medical exam done will be sent upon completion of selection based on the program’s eligibility criteria. The adopted child must go for the medical exam within 30 days of receiving these instructions. Only an approved panel physician (➨ can do a complete medical exam for immigration reasons.

Once the exam is done, the physician will send the results to IRCC and will give a document to the child confirming that a medical exam is done.

The child must also pass the criminal and security checks and provide police certificates if they are 18 or older.

Step 5: Landing in Canada

If the child’s application is approved, he/she will receive a Confirmation of Permanent Residence (CoPR) and if he/she are from a country that requires a visa you will also be issued a permanent resident visa.

The child will only become a Permanent Resident of Canada when he/she crosses a Canadian port of entry. This is referred to as ‘landing in Canada’ (➨Page).

He/she must land in Canada before the expiry date, which appears on the Canada Immigration Visa. Usually, the expiry date is one (1) year from the time medical examinations were completed. As this is not always the case, be sure to verify the expiry date as soon as the Canada Immigration Visa is received.

Ready to take the next step towards your Canadian immigration journey? Fill out the form below and embark on your path to new opportunities.







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