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Canadian Citizenship Through Marriage or Homeownership?

Blog posted on by Evelyn Ackah in Canada Work Permits

Canadian Citizenship Through Marriage or Homeownership?

Canada immigration lawyer Evelyn Ackah spoke to Financial Advisor Gerry Scott of Snowbirds Wealth Management about the Canada Spousal Open Work Permit, and whether citizenship through marriage or homeownership is the better pathway.

A Canada Spousal Open Work Permit gives spouses or common-law partners the opportunity to continue to work in Canada while waiting for their spousal sponsorship applications to be finalized. Applicants can apply for a spousal open work permit with or at any time after they submit an application for permanent residence in the Spouse or Common-Law Partner class.

For more information and assistance in applying to Canada's Spousal Open Work Permit Program, or if you have been ruled unqualified for a work permit and want to explore your alternatives, contact the experienced immigration legal team at Ackah Law. We save you time, money and stress and identify potential problems before they occur.

Do You Have Questions About Spousal Sponsorship or a Spousal Open Work Permit?

Contact Evelyn Ackah and the experienced immigration team at Ackah Business Immigration Law today at (403) 452‑9515 or [email protected].


In today's episode of Have a Plan Before You Land, Gerry Scott asks immigration lawyer Evelyn Ackah to explain the impacts of both homeownership and marriage on the Canadian citizenship process for an American.

Gerry Scott:
An American buys a home in Canada. For some reason, they think they get all this stuff with it. What do they get?

Evelyn Ackah:
They get a beautiful house in Canada and that's it. It means that buying a house doesn't actually give you permanent residence. It allows you to enter and stay in your house as a visitor, and generally the same visitor rules apply, which is six months in Canada, and then you probably have to spend some time out of the country. You may be able to extend your visitor status, but it does not grant you permanent residence or citizenship in any way. In order to achieve that, you'd have to go through an immigration process.

Gerry Scott:
A Canadian marries an American, wants to bring that American wife or husband back to Canada. What is the process?

Evelyn Ackah:
Well, that's a good question, Gerry. There are two processes that they can undertake. One would be to wait until they enter together where the American spouse is entering as a visitor initially and then, upon arrival, that spouse can change their intention from visitor to permanent and then do the application from inside Canada. This inside Canada application allows for them to get what's called a spousal open work permit, which is really great because it means the spouse will be able to work usually within four to six months, and it's open for any employer that they choose in Canada.

The other option is to do everything outside of Canada, so the application is submitted from outside Canada, until the person, the spouse, is granted permanent residence. Then they enter as a family under her or his PR.

To learn more about today's guest, send us an email.

Evelyn L. Ackah, BA, LL.B.

Founder/Managing Lawyer

Ms. Ackah is passionate about immigration law because it focuses on people and relationships, which are at the core of her personal values. Starting her legal career as a corporate/commercial ...

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What I value most about Evelyn's counsel is her willingness to think outside the box when navigating complex or stressful immigration matters. When presented with a problem, Evelyn immediately envisions herself as the client and then draws from her broad experience to design a solution. Her unshakeable knowledge of immigration law and policy is obvious. However, what distinguishes her most from other practitioners is her intuitive and action-oriented advice. She understands us and is an absolute asset to our business.

– Marla Brock, CEO, KidCoover

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