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Ask Tito Mike by Michael Scott  

Sponsorship of parents & grandparents 2020

Closing November 3

by Michael Scott

In a new release dated October 5, 2020, the Honourable Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, announced the opening of the 2020 Parents and Grandparents (PGP) Program. The news was a long time coming but still welcome to the many families who want to reunite with their parents and grandparents inside Canada. It reminds me of waiting on the Lord from Isaiah 40:31 or the old English proverb: “all things come to those who wait.” Potential users must be aware of the limits of the 2020 PGP.

The program is only open for a three-week period, from 12 p.m. EDT on October 13, 2020 to 12 p.m. EST on November 3, 2020. Eligible Canadian citizens and permanent residents must submit an online Expression of Interest within this time period. IRCC has made a special accommodation for persons with disabilities who can request the interest to sponsor form in an alternative paper copy, Braille or large print, by contacting the IRCC Client Support Centre at 1-888-242-2100 or by e-mail available up to November 3, 2020.

IRCC will invite up to 10,000 parties by random selection to submit a sponsorship application. The selection is based upon the luck of the draw not the speed of the online submission (the system used in 2019). Selected sponsors will be given 60 days to submit their complete sponsorship applications.

Sponsors and cosponsors must meet eligibility requirements, which include (not only listed here) being at least 18 years old, Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada, reside inside Canada, do not owe money to the Government or have an un-discharged bankruptcy, and meet income requirements. Income requirements are measured by low income cutoff numbers (LICO) for three consecutive Canada Revenue Taxation years preceding the date of the application submission. IRCC recognizes that many sponsors may have been financially impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and have adjusted the income requirement for the 2020 tax year to the minimum LICO figure and not the LICO plus 30 per cent standard for 2018 and 2019. Check the income required in the table below. Make sure that you calculate the number of persons you are responsible for to include the sponsor, co-sponsor and dependent children (if applicable) and the applicants against the table.


The clock is running and interested parties have until November 3, 2020, to submit their online sponsorship interest, which we have become accustomed to using “EOI” or an “Expression of Interest” to describe the online profile submission. The profile is not an application but an opportunity to be included in the lottery selection, which will follow. Once you successfully submit your interest to sponsor a parent(s) or grandparent(s), you will have to wait and hope for an invitation to apply, which will be limited to a cap of 10,000. For those who have tried and failed in the past, don’t despair, the chance is still there for you.

The launch of the 2020 Parents and Grandparents Program is another indicator of the government’s commitment to prioritizing the approval of 49,000 family class sponsorship applications by December 31, 2020.

“Our government strongly believes the importance of keeping families together, particularly during difficult times. The Parents and Grandparents Program is a dedicated pathway to reuniting more families in Canada,” explained Marco Mendicino in his announcement to reopen the PGP. “Our government has strengthened the program by increasing the number of people who can apply, making the intake process fairer, and steadily increasing the number of families you are able to reunite.”

Family reunification is important and the reopening of the PGP is a step in the right direction. Remember the deadline for online submissions. Good luck with your submissions but ensure that you are eligible as sponsor and your parents and grandparents are admissible.

Michael Scott is a Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant (RCIC, R525678) who has 30 years of experience with Canada Immigration and the Manitoba Provincial Nominee Program. He currently works as a licensed consultant with R.B. Global Immigration Consultants Ltd. 204-691-1166 or 204-227-0292. E-mail:

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