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Advice for bringing my Chilean wife to Canada.

Discussion forum for expats moving to or living in Canada.

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Advice for bringing my Chilean wife to Canada.

Post Posted: Thu Jan 22, 2015 6:29 pm


I am currently living in Santiago, Chile with my fiancé. I am a 29 year old male Canadian citizen and she is a 32 year old female Chilean citizen. We are getting married in late-March and plan to move to Vancouver, Canada in mid-April.

I have a rough understanding of the visa application process to allow her to live with me in Canada but I would like to post my plan in detail here with links and quotes from the CIC website in hopes that others can help me understand the process more clearly. I also have some questions at the end of this post in reference to the application process.

Step 1 - Visitor/Tourist

I plan to fly with her to Canada in mid-April with all the documents prepared and filled out in case immigration has questions about her intentions for entering Canada. Chilean citizens can now visit Canada for six months without a visa as of 2014-11-21.

Chilean citizens no longer require a visa to visit Canada. This means that Chilean visitors and businesspeople can now stay in Canada for up to six months visa-free.

Step 2 - Permanent Residence

Within the first 1-3 weeks we will hopefully have found an apartment and have a permanent address for mailing/contact purposes. We should also have separate Canadian phone numbers by this time. Once we have these things the next step is to pay the fees ($550) and complete the sponsor/sponsored applications for permanent residence then submit these to the Case Processing Centre in Mississauga, Ontario. According to current wait times this process can/will take roughly 25 months. We intend to get her medical and police checks here in Chile before we leave and have them translated by a qualified individual if necessary.

If you are a citizen or permanent resident of Canada, you can sponsor your spouse to immigrate to Canada.

There are two stages in the process to sponsor your spouse to become permanent residents.
- First: As a citizen or permanent resident of Canada, you must apply to sponsor your family member.
- Second: Your spouse must apply for permanent residence.

You must send both your sponsorship application and the permanent residence application for your family members at the same time.

Applications to stay in Canada as a permanent resident (Spouse or Common-law Partner in Canada Class):
- Sponsorship application = $75
- Principal applicant = $475

Mail your completed application to the Case Processing Centre in Mississauga, Ontario.

There are two consecutive steps in processing family sponsorship applications. In order to know the total approximate time you must ADD the times together.

Person to be sponsored lives in Canada
- Spouse, common-law partner in Canada: 17 months + 8 months = 25 months (Working on applications received on August 29, 2013)

You can contact a panel physician directly to get your medical exam if you apply under one of the following categories: Spouse, common-law partner.

City: Santiago
Name: Philippa Moore
Address: Centro Medico San Jorge, Cruz Del Sur 177, Las Condes
Spoken Languages: English, Spanish

Name of document(s) to get: Certificado de Antecedentes (for criminal convictions) and Hoja de Vida del Conductor (for convictions related to driving)

You can apply in person at any office of the Registro Civil e Identification, with your “RUT” or online with Servicio de Registro Civil e Identificacion (available in Spanish only).

Any document that is not in English or French must be accompanied by the English or French translation, and an affidavit from the person who completed the translation, if required.

Step 3 - Open Work Permit

At the same time that we apply for permanent residence we will also apply and pay the fee ($155) for an open work permit under the new pilot program that began on 2014-12-22. This permit if accepted will allow her to work in Canada for 24 months from the date of approval which should be enough time for her permanent residence application to be approved. This open work permit will be processed within 4 months of submitting the application which should be before her 6 months temporary resident status as a visitor expires.

You can only apply for a work permit from inside Canada if you are in Canada because you have already applied for permanent residence from inside Canada.

Applications for visas and permits (Work Permits):
Work permit = $155

Citizenship and Immigration Canada will commence issuing open work permits to certain spouses or common-law partners before the approval in principle decision is made.

New applicants should complete a permanent residence application and an open work permit application and submit both simultaneously.

Applicants will have their application for an open work permit processed within four months of receipt of their work permit application.

An open work permit enables a person to seek and accept employment and to work for any employer for a specified period of time.

Officers will issue open work permits to applicants if they meet the following requirements:
- A permanent resident application has been submitted.
- A Canadian citizen has submitted a sponsorship application on their behalf.
- The applicant resides at the same address as the sponsor.
- The applicant has valid temporary resident status (as a visitor, student or worker).

These work permits will be valid for two years.


Now that you have read my basic plan I would like to ask some questions about things I am unsure about in regards to the process. Thank you for reading and answering any questions you can help me with.

#1 - What should I tell immigration when we arrive in Vancouver?

Should I tell them she is my wife and that we plan to apply for permanent residence and an open work permit within the first month?

#2 - How should I mail these documents?

Should I mail all the documents (Permanent Residence Sponsor, Permanent Residence Sponsorship & Open Work Permit) in 1 envelope to the Case Processing Centre in Mississauga, Ontario?

#3 - Do we need to pay the Right of Permanent Residence Fee & Principal Applicant Fee?

Applications to stay in Canada as a permanent resident (Spouse or Common-law Partner in Canada Class):
- Principal applicant = $475

Right of Permanent Residence Fee (RPRF)
- Getting your permanent resident status = $490


Re: Advice for bringing my Chilean wife to Canada.

Post Posted: Mon Nov 30, 2015 2:31 pm

I've been following this forum for some time now and have decided that I would like to apply to immigrate to Canada. What is the best way to start?


Re: Advice for bringing my Chilean wife to Canada.

Post Posted: Mon Nov 30, 2015 7:29 pm

Hello there Miho..The one thing that will hugely increase the likelihood that you will qualify to immigrate to Canada is a job offer from an LMIA company. Its worth it to spend some time looking for work even if it takes longer than you expect. I have known a few people who immigrated to Canada after having been not accepted on the first try. After spending some time looking for a job they found one and were able to get in on either a work permit or as a permanent resident under the skilled worker program. Finding a job insn't that easy but it definately is doable. Look to sites like,,,, etc.


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