Processing spouses and common-law partners: evaluating the legality of a married relationship

This part contains policy, procedures and guidance employed by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada staff. Its published regarding the Department’s web site being a courtesy to stakeholders.

Authorities regarding marriage in Canada

The federal and provincial governments share constitutional power with regards to wedding (and divorce or separation). The government that is federal broad legislative obligation for divorce proceedings as well as for components of capability to marry or who are able to legitimately marry who. The provinces have the effect of legislation in regards to the solemnization of wedding.

All provincial and marriage that is territorial:

  • allow for spiritual and civil marriages
  • need witnesses to a married relationship ceremony
  • determine officials or people authorized to solemnize a married relationship
  • set minimum age demands for wedding

Marriages that take place in Canada must satisfy federal needs with respect to your right to marry and provincial needs with regards to solemnization. The option of whether or not to ever marry is constitutionally protected.


Requirement to be hitched before publishing the application form

IRCC cannot need couples to marry to be able to immigrate. Nonetheless, they must be common-law partners if they are not married. There clearly was no supply in IRPA for fiance(e)s or intended common-law lovers. The expectation is the fact that a Canadian or permanent resident and a foreign nationwide can get hitched or live together and set up a common-law relationship before they submit sponsorship and immigration applications.

Minimal age for marriage in Canada

The minimal age for wedding differs between provinces:

  • 19 in British Columbia, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, the Northwest Territories, the Yukon and Nunavut
  • 18 in Alberta, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Ontario, Prince Edward Island, Quebec, and Saskatchewan

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