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How to Unite with an Extended Family Member in Canada

Posted on 09/10/2020

Do you have an extended family member in Canada whom you wish to reunite with? We’ll explain how you may be able to reunite with what is called extended family members who are in Canada as long as your extended family members in Canada are either:

  • Canadian citizens, or
  • Permanent residents of Canada

You may also be able to in certain circumstances reunite with someone who is temporarily in Canada. We’ll discuss that in a separate blog.

What is an extended family member?

Now, in order to reunite with an extended family member in Canada, you must fit one of the categories listed below to be considered an extended family member according to IRCC’s regulations and policies:

If you have a direct relationship with the Canadian citizen or permanent resident, you must be related to the Canadian citizen or permanent resident in one of the following ways:

  • You have been in an exclusive dating relationship for at least 1 year with the citizen or permanent resident in Canada and have spent some time physically together with that person during the relationship.
  • You are a non-dependent (adult) child of that person.
  • You are a grandchild (dependent child of a non-dependent adult child) of that person.
  • You are a sibling, half-sibling, or step-sibling of that person.
  • You are a grandparent of that person.

If you’re related to the spouse or common-law partner of the Canadian citizen or permanent resident, then you must be:

  • A non-dependent child (adult child) of the spouse/common-law partner
  • A grandchild (dependent child of a non-dependent (adult) child) of the spouse/common-law partner
  • A sibling, half-sibling, step-sibling of the spouse/common-law partner
  • A grandparent of the spouse/common-law partner

If you’re related to the person in an exclusive dating relationship with a Canadian citizen or permanent resident, then you must be:

  • A dependent child of that person in an exclusive dating relationship
  • A non-dependent child of that person
  • A grandchild of that person

How do you unite with your extended family member in Canada?

Step 1:

The person in Canada must go here to download IMM 0006: Application for Authorization and Statutory Declaration. You must have Adobe Acrobat Reader to open it and if you still have trouble doing so right-click on the link and save it to your hard drive and then open it from there using Adobe Acrobat Reader.

  • The person in Canada must indicate whether they are a Canadian citizen or permanent resident and by clicking the appropriate button, and then fill out section 1 of form IMM 0006 and also fill out section 2 which gives the information about the extended family member abroad who is applying to come to Canada to unite with them. At this point the person in Canada should NOT sign section 4.
  • The person in Canada should then send form imm0006 to their extended family member abroad.

Step 2:

The extended family member abroad should sign the form (that is, fill out section 3 of the form) and then send it back to the person in Canada who they are applying to unite with.

Step 3:

The person in Canada should then fill out section 4 (which is a legal, sworn declaration) in the presence of one of the following officials in Canada who are authorized to take declarations/oaths including:

  • A commissioner for oaths,
  • A justice of the peace,
  • A lawyer, or
  • A notary public

Step 4:

The person in Canada should then send you – the extended family member – a copy of the completed and signed form IMM 0006 which you must then use to apply for a written authorization as we explain in the following step:

Step 5:

You must now use your signed and completed copy of form IMM 0006 to apply to IRCC for a written authorization to travel to Canada. This process depends on whether you need a visitor visa, or an eta as follows:

If you haven’t yet applied for a visitor visa, go here to apply online. Remember to do the following:

  • For the drop-down menu 1a: purpose of travel, choose other
  • For the box 1b: description write COVID-19, (using capital letters and a hyphen exactly as shown)
  • Include a copy of the completed and signed from IMM 0006 as proof of your relationship to the person in Canada.
  • Pay the fees
  • Wait for an email reply from IRCC which will be sent to your IRCC Secure Account (which you will have to get when you start the process using the link above)

If you have already applied for a visitor visa, you should:

  • Send your request for travel authorization to the following email address: COVID-TravelExemptions-Exemptionsdevoyage-COVID.IRCC@cic.gc.ca
  • Make sure you include:
    • Full name
    • Date of birth
    • If you have an application in process
    • How you applied for your visa (online or on paper if you are a refugee, for example)
    • Your application number and UCI (unique client identifier)
    • Your passport number
    • A detailed reason for your travelling to Canada
    • The dates you plan to travel
    • Where you live now
    • Your supporting documents (i.e. your copy of the completed and signed IMM 0006 form)
  • Include COVID-19 PHAC in the subject line if you are travelling for humanitarian and compassionate reasons and have an authorization letter from PHAC
  • It is recommended that you DON’T book your flight until you get your travel authorization from IRCC. However, if you already booked your flight you should include:
    • Your flight number
    • Your departure time and location
    • Your arrival time and location

Step 6:

You have to bring the following with you in order to board the flight to Canada:

  • A copy of your completed form IMM 0006 Application for Authorization and Statutory Declaration as well
  • A copy of your Written Authorization from IRCC
  • Be ready to pass a health check by airline officials at the airport
  • Have your valid travel document – visitor visa or eta and your passport
  • Have additional proof of family connections like a birth certificate or similar documents
  • Be able to prove that you’re travelling to Canada for 15 days or more and are travelling for an essential purpose (non-discretionary).

Posted in News Tips and tagged COVID-19, Travel Authorization, Visitor Visa

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