Intake process for family class applications for parents and grandparents

This section contains policy, procedures and guidance used by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada staff. It is posted on the Department’s website as a courtesy to stakeholders.

This page contains instructions on the intake process for the sponsorship of parents and grandparents.

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Interest to sponsor form

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) is using a first-in process to manage the intake of applications for the Parents and Grandparents Program (PGP Program), effective 2019. More specifically, ITAs are issued in the order the department receives the completed interest to sponsor forms. The Ministerial Instructions that came into force on January 1, 2019, support the implementation of the first-in intake process and specify the number of complete applications the department can accept for processing under the annual cap.

Potential sponsors must let the department know that they are interested in sponsoring their parents or grandparents by submitting an interest to sponsor form when it becomes available on IRCC’s website at the beginning of each calendar year. Potential sponsors must upload a copy of their status-in-Canada document with their interest to sponsor form, as this assists IRCC officers to identify duplicate submissions. All fields on the interest to sponsor form must be completed. The form is available only until a pre-determined maximum number of submissions is reached.

Supporting documents

Potential sponsors must attach or upload a scanned or photographed copy of one of the following status-in-Canada documents with their interest to sponsor form:

  • permanent resident card (PR card) with both sides in a single document
  • “Record of Landing” form [IMM 1000] only if the sponsor has not received a PR card
  • “Confirmation of Permanent Residence” form [IMM 5292] or [IMM 5688]
  • Canadian citizenship certificate or card (both sides)
  • Canadian birth certificate
  • birth certificate from the Quebec Directeur de l’état civil
  • Canadian passport page showing number, date of issue and expiration, photo, first name, surname, and place and date of birth
  • secure certificate of Indian status

The potential sponsor’s status-in-Canada document does not have to be valid. If they are invited to submit a complete application, a copy of the same document must be included in their sponsorship application.

Changes to the interest to sponsor form after submission

IRCC officers should accept a potential sponsor’s request to update their email address if it changes after they submit their interest to sponsor form. The email request should include their new email address, confirmation number, full name, date of birth and country of birth, and it should be sent to IRCC’s Client Support Centre sends these requests to the responsible office within the Centralized Network (CN) to update the Excel spreadsheet with the new email address. All other change requests, such as name or address, should be included in the potential sponsor’s complete application, along with evidence and an explanation for the change.

Determining the basis for the first-in intake process

Successfully submitted forms are automatically time-stamped and numbered by the information technology system when received.

The information submitted on the interest to sponsor form is automatically collected in a database. IRCC officers within the CN are designated with access, retrieve the data and images, and export this information into a master list in GCDOCS.

Duplicate submissions

In the case of duplicates, the officer retains only the potential sponsor’s last entry for the purposes of being invited to apply. The Solutions Information Management Branch provides both the master list and a working list to the CN after the removal of duplicate submissions.

Sending invitations to apply (ITAs)

Following the removal of duplicate submissions, IRCC officers in the CN invite potential sponsors by email to submit a complete application. Sponsors have 60 days from the date of their ITA letter to submit their complete application. ITAs are sent based on the order the interest to sponsor forms are received by IRCC. The ITA is not transferrable. In cases where the email is undeliverable, IRCC officers print the email and mail it to the sponsor’s mailing address.

Procedures for accepting sponsorship applications for processing

A complete application is accepted for processing only if it is submitted by the person who received the ITA. Otherwise, the application is not accepted for processing and is returned.

Procedures for accepting parent and grandparent applications within the cap for processing

When officers at the case processing centre receive the sponsorship application, they do the following:

  • Check to ensure the application has been received within 60 calendar days of the date on the ITA.
  • Verify that the person has been invited to submit a complete application.
  • Check to ensure the information in the person’s application matches the information provided on the interest to sponsor form.
  • Check the application for completeness, per sections 10 and 11 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations and the Ministerial Instructions.

Validating applications to sponsor

IRCC officers in the CN validate the name, date of birth, address, country of birth, names of sponsored person or people, and status-in-Canada document number by comparing the information in the sponsorship application to the information in the working list. If the information in the sponsorship application does not match what is on the interest to sponsor form, the application may be rejected. If the IRCC officer is satisfied the information on the interest to sponsor form and the sponsorship application match, the officer records the decision.

If the officer is unable to validate the information in the sponsorship application, and no letter of explanation or supporting documentation is included to explain discrepancies between the information on the interest to sponsor form and the information in the application, the officer cannot accept the application for processing and returns it to the sponsor. Officers should record the reason for the decision.

Checking completeness of the permanent residence application

IRCC officers assess the permanent residence application to ensure it is complete and includes all the supporting documents listed in the “Document Checklist – Sponsor – For Parents and Grandparents” form [IMM 5771] (PDF, 1.59 MB). If any documents required by the checklist are not included in the application, officers may accept a letter of explanation for each missing document or any other evidence or document to satisfy the requirement. Incomplete applications are not accepted for processing, and officers return the application to the sponsor and record this decision.

Incomplete or undocumented applications are not included under the cap and are returned. The potential sponsor is not issued another ITA. They can submit an interest to sponsor form when the PGP Program re-opens.

Validated and complete applications should be put into processing.

Sponsorship eligibility requirements

To determine if a sponsor is eligible to sponsor their parents or grandparents, see the criteria in Operational Bulletin 561 – New regulations for sponsors of parents and grandparents.

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