In most cases, a Visitor Visa (also known as Temporary Resident Visa or TRV) is required in order to travel to Canada.
Those applicants requiring a visa must apply at a Canadian visa office outside of Canada prior to coming to Canada. Applicants will be assessed on a number of factors depending on the purpose of their travels (such as ties to your home country and obligations to return home, funds available for your stay, purpose in Canada, admissibility). If visiting family or friends in Canada, a letter of invitation may be necessary to support the application.
If approved, a visa will be inserted into the applicant’s passport, which they can then use to travel to Canada. A Visitor Record will be issued at the time of entry into Canada authorizing the period of stay in Canada (usually up to 6 months).
Visitors from visa-exempt countries who are travelling to Canada by air (with the exemption of U.S. citizens) must apply for an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) prior to travelling to Canada. The eTA is linked to their passport and is valid for up to 5 years, or until the passport expires, whichever comes first.
Visa-exempt visitors are eligible to apply for entry directly at the port of entry (e.g. citizens of the United States, etc.). In most cases, the officer will stamp your passport to indicate your entry date. If your passport is not stamped, you can assume that you are granted 6-month visitor status from the date of your most recent entry, unless otherwise noted.
In some cases, visitor status can be extended from within Canada for an additional period of 6 months. The officer will review the application to determine the purpose of remaining in Canada and the length of extension they may grant, if approved. We assist our clients with extension of visitor status to extend their stay in Canada.
If you are planning to visit Canada, or you are a Canadian citizen or resident who is looking to invite someone to visit you in Canada, contact us to discuss the visitor visa application process.
Parent and Grandparent Super Visa
A Super Visa allows you to visit your children or grandchildren in Canada for up to 2 years at a time without having to renew your visitor status. If approved, you will be granted a multiple-entry visitor visa allowing you to travel back and forth between your home country and Canada for a period of up to 10 years.
To qualify for a Super Visa, the applicant must meet the following requirements:
- be the parent or grandparent of a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident of Canada;
- have a signed letter from your child or grandchild promising financial support for the length of your visit (the child or grandchild must prove that they meet the minimum income requirements for their household size, including the applicant(s));
- purchase Canadian medical insurance coverage for at least one year with at least $100,000 coverage;
- complete and successfully pass an immigration medical examination.
Super Visa applicants will also be assessed on a number of other factors (such as ties to your home country, funds available for your stay, purpose of your stay in Canada, admissibility). They must apply for a Super Visa at a Canadian visa office outside of Canada prior to coming to Canada.
The Super Visa is an application for a temporary visit up to 2 years. If you wish for your parent or grandparent to stay in Canada permanently, contact us to discuss an option of applying for Parent and Grandparent Sponsorship.
Visitor Status Extensions and Implied Status
Generally, you can remain in Canada as a visitor no longer than six months (or until your passport expires, whichever comes first). Visitor status may be extended from within Canada for an additional time period if you have a valid reason to extend your stay.
If you apply to extend your visitor status within Canada before your status expires, you can legally stay in Canada as a visitor until a decision is made on your application. In this case, you would have ‘implied status’. If your visitor status extension is approved, you will be issued a Visitor Record that will indicate an expiry date. In rare circumstances, you may be eligible for subsequent visitor status extensions.
If you are in Canada as a visitor and you require assistance to extend your stay, contact us for a free consultation. If you wish to study or work in Canada, you should contact us to discuss your eligibility to apply for a study or work permit.
Restoration of Status
If a visitor, worker or student has lost their status (if their permit has expired), they may be able to restore their status if they apply within 90 days of losing status and continue to meet the initial requirements of their stay.
Those awaiting restoration of status may stay in Canada until a decision is made on their application, but those in Canada on work or study permits cannot continue to work or attend school until their status has been restored.
If you have lost your status, contact our immigration group to discuss whether you are eligible to apply for restoration of status.