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Family Class Sponsorship Appeals

If an application of your sponsored family member or relative to immigrate to Canada as a permanent resident has been refused, you, as the sponsor, have the right to appeal to the Immigration Appeal Division (IAD) of the Immigration and Refugee Board Canada (IRB). You have 30 days after the refusal to file an appeal.

Note: You may not appeal if your family member has been found to be inadmissible because of:

  • a serious criminal offence,

  • involvement in organized crime,

  • security grounds,

  • violations of human or international rights, or

  • misrepresentation (unless the person is your spouse, common-law partner or child).

The IAD may allow an appeal – and set aside the original decision – if there was:

  • an error in law or fact, or

  • a breach of a principle of natural justice.

In some cases, the IAD may give special relief and allow an appeal based on humanitarian and compassionate (H&C) considerations, such as the best interests of a child.

When you appear at sponsorship appeals, you have the right to be represented at your own expense by counsel. Appeals are adversarial, i.e., your counsel has to argue against the Minister's counsel before the IAD member (who is a decision-maker like a judge in court) why your sponsorship application should be allowed.

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