Canada’s Parent and Grandparent Visa Lottery: Is It Working?

Evelyn Ackah | Canada Parent and Grandparent Visa Lottery- Is It Working? | Immigration Law

Canada Immigration Parent and Grandparent Program (PGP) implemented a new parent and grandparent visa lottery system in 2017. In December, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) announced 2017 PGP program changes:

those wanting to bring their parents or grandparents to Canada will now have 30 days to fill out an online form to indicate their interest. IRCC will then randomly choose 10,000 individuals from those who filled out the form, and those people will be invited to send in their complete application package.

The parent and grandparent visa lottery online form was available January 3 – February 2, 2017; sponsors had 30 days to submit the application form to sponsor a parent or grandparent for Canadian citizenship. The unexpected change of rules has created a backlog of thousands of applicants and upset families. IRCC received 95,000 online entries sent official invitations to apply to 10,000 families in April, and also sent 85,000 rejection letters, according to IRCC.

The National Observer reports:

More than 95,000 families registered this winter for a new lottery system that was supposed to fast-track the immigration of 10,000 parents and grandparents, but the adapted program fell far short of its intended target. As of mid-June, only 700 had actually applied and the federal government has now suggested a second lottery may be needed later this year to fill the immigration quota.

At June’s Canadian Bar Association Immigration Law Conference, the IRCC said that of the 700 applications received at that point 15% were incomplete, and many of the online applicants did not understand or meet eligibility requirements.

IRCC Super Visa 

Families who were not selected in the PGP lottery can apply for Canada’s super visa. The parent and grandparent super visa is a temporary resident permit that allows parents and grandparents of Canadian citizens and permanent residents to visit Canada for up to 2 years per visit, and visit multiple times over 10 years without renewing their status.

To apply for a parent and grandparent super visa IRCC requirements are that you must:

  • be the parent or grandparent of a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident of Canada
  • be allowed to enter Canada
  • prove that your child or grandchild in Canada meets a minimum income threshold,
  • provide a written statement from that child or grandchild that he or she will give you financial support
  • have valid Canadian medical insurance coverage for at least one year
  • have an immigration medical exam

“Extended family reunification is at the core of Canada’s immigration system”, says Calgary immigration lawyer Evelyn Ackah. “People move here believing in Canada family values, and are frustrated by bureaucratic obstacles to reunite their family. We work with families to help them understand the parent and grandparent visa eligibility requirements, to complete the application and documentation, and to address financial and other barriers that can delay visa approval. When programs like the IRCC parent and grandparent visa lottery system fail our clients, we look for innovative, pro-active solutions for various challenges that may arise throughout the immigration process.”

We Can Help

Evelyn Ackah is an immigration law expert who can review your particular case, and help you determine the best course of action. As the founder and managing lawyer at Ackah Business Immigration Law, Evelyn Ackah helps you understand your rights and interpret and navigate Canadian immigration law. To find out more about how to apply for Canadian citizenship and how to move to Canada:

Contact Evelyn Ackah Today
(403) 452-9515 Ext. 107 or 1-800-932-1190
or email us directly


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