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Sponsorship of parents, children, spouses (common-law, conjugal, same sex), refugees.

Social Assistance 

Posts: 1

Posted On: 7/19/2023
Posts: 1
I am the Sponsor to my husband. He is living with me in Canada, he currently has a visitors (temporary residence) visa. We are currently applying for his permanent Residence under the Spouse or Common-Law Partner in Canada class.

In one of the requirements for this application, it says that I cannot apply or get any Social Assistance program while we are going through this process. I am wondering what they include or what they mean by Social Assistance. For example, I did my 2022 tax report, and I am eligible to apply for Child Tax Benefits (we have 4 children). Also, I was planning to apply for the Healthy Smiles Ontario program and the federal dental program for children.
My question is, are any of these considered social assistance programs?
These benefits will be really of help to us, but I need to make sure I can apply to these without affecting the Canadian Permanent residence application for my husband.
I would really appreciate some information or clarity on this concern.
Posts: 4049

Posted On: 7/27/2023
Posts: 4049
Hi there,

Thank you for sharing your question and situation with us.

It is best that you contact IRCC directly for this information. The IRCC Client Support Centre can provide information specific to your application, you can reach them by phone (1-888-242-2100) or use their web form. If you require any further assistance, it may also be helpful to seek the advice of a reputable and registered immigration consultant or an immigration lawyer about your situation. To find a community legal clinic in your area, visit Services Near Me.

Also outlined in the IRCC Help Centre article, What’s considered social assistance when sponsoring my parents and grandparents? are some examples of what is and is not considered social assistance. Here is an excerpt:

What is considered social assistance?
Some benefits (money, goods or services) from provinces or territories are considered to be social assistance for the purpose of sponsoring. This includes assistance from the government to cover basic needs like:
  • food
  • shelter
  • clothing
  • fuel
  • utilities
  • household supplies
  • health care not covered by public health care (extra benefits paid by the government to low-income people or others in need)
What isn’t considered social assistance?
Social assistance doesn’t include:
  • Employment Insurance
  • provincial student loans
  • immigration loans
  • subsidized housing
  • tax credits
  • child care subsidies
  • public health care (services your province or territory gives to all people who live there)
  • other benefits widely available to residents, including people who are working
Provinces and territories have created temporary programs to help people cope with the COVID-19 pandemic. We don’t consider these benefits to be social assistance if they aren’t considered as such by the province or territory.
Also not considered social assistance:
  • Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit
  • Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit
  • Canada Recovery Benefit (now closed)
  • Canada Emergency Response Benefit (now closed)
  • Canada Emergency Student Benefit (now closed)

We hope this information is helpful. Please follow up with us if you have any other questions.


Your Settlement.Org team