Sponsorship Outside of Canada
When it comes to sponsoring a spouse or common-law partner for permanent residence, it is possible to pursue sponsorship from outside of Canada. In some cases, the person to be sponsored may be unable to enter Canada and the sponsor will be required to start the process while the couple is geographically separated. In other cases, the sponsor may reside with the sponsored person overseas, but intend to move to Canada once the sponsorship process is finalized.
A couple may also choose to submit a sponsorship application outside of Canada even though they are currently living in Canada. Sometimes this is done to preserve the right to appeal a possible rejection of the application. It may also be done in situations where the out-of-Canada option is likely to take less time for processing than the in-Canada option. It should be noted that, while a couple residing in Canada has the option of doing a sponsorship application outside of Canada, a couple residing outside of Canada does not have the option of doing a sponsorship application from within Canada.
Sponsorship from outside of Canada is unlikely to succeed when the person to be sponsored resides in Canada but the sponsor lives overseas, or when both spouses (common-law partners) live overseas and neither spouse plans on actually residing in Canada. For example, a sponsor may live and work overseas and not have any plan to move back to Canada in the foreseeable future, but have a spouse or common-law partner who lives in Canada. In such a situation, Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (formerly Citizenship and Immigration Canada), will deny the application because a requirement of spousal (common-law partner) sponsorship is that the sponsor must intend to reside in Canada.
Given that a spousal or common-law partner sponsorship application done outside of Canada involves a right of appeal in the even of a negative decision, it is worth noting that, in many cases, spousal sponsorship appeals are very winnable. If you receive a rejection on your spousal (common-law partner) sponsorship application, you should not assume that you won't have a decent chance of success should you choose to appeal the negative decision. Starting over or giving up are not the only options in the event of a rejected sponsorship application from outside Canada. I'm happy to speak with you if you have recently received a rejection on your sponsorship application.