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We will have lived together for 361 days: common-law or not?

We will have lived together for 361 days: common-law or not?

Old Sep 2nd 2010, 4:34 am
  #1  
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Default We will have lived together for 361 days: common-law or not?

Hi there,

I'm living in Vancouver on a BUNAC visa with my partner who is also on BUNAC. We've been in a committed relationship since 2008 but only officially moved in together when we both moved here (Dec 27th 2009). Given that I may be staying here at the end of the year (either with implied status or on a new TWP) and she will have to move back home (on Dec. 23rd 2010) we still won't have lived together continuously for 1 year - this really worries me. Does anyone have any advice about this? I want to make sure that I can either sponsor her (as my common-law partner if/ when I get PR) or that she can come back here (on an open work permit as my common-law partner) when I get a new TWP.

We have proof of holidays together, can get statutory declarations, parents as witnesses, joint bank accounts, listed as beneficiaries in each others life insurance policy etc. We just haven't/ won't have continuously lived under the same roof for 365 days. Please help!

N.
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Old Sep 2nd 2010, 4:43 am
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Default Re: We will have lived together for 361 days: common-law or not?

On the statutary declaration you have to give dates you have cohabited (lived together) and it asks on years, you cannot put under 1 year and succeed with this.. Common law is 1 year which is 365 days.

CIC Say
'You are a common-law partner if you have been living together in a conjugal relationship for at least one year in a continuous 12-month period that was not interrupted.'

If she leaves then this breaks your continuous relationship anyway.

Last edited by Aviator; Sep 2nd 2010 at 4:46 am.
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Old Sep 2nd 2010, 4:50 am
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Default Re: We will have lived together for 361 days: common-law or not?

Originally Posted by The Aviator
On the statutary declaration you have to give dates you have cohabited (lived together) and it asks on years, you cannot put under 1 year and succeed with this.. Common law is 1 year which is 365 days.

CIC Say
'You are a common-law partner if you have been living together in a conjugal relationship for at least one year in a continuous 12-month period that was not interrupted.'

If she leaves then this breaks your continuous relationship anyway.
Thanks for the reply but you can understand that she has to leave - she can't stay in the country illegally. Are you telling me then that I can't sponsor her or that she can't come back with me on a TWP because we are 4 days short of living together? Even though we've been in a committed relationship for over 2.5 years - this just seems really harsh.
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Old Sep 2nd 2010, 4:55 am
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Default Re: We will have lived together for 361 days: common-law or not?

Originally Posted by nevee
Thanks for the reply but you can understand that she has to leave - she can't stay in the country illegally. Are you telling me then that I can't sponsor her or that she can't come back with me on a TWP because we are 4 days short of living together? Even though we've been in a committed relationship for over 2.5 years - this just seems really harsh.
That's my interpretation, it says 12 months. Why can she not leave by land, reenter and ask for a visitor permit?

If my understanding is correct, it is not 12 months at any time, it is 12+months continuously up to and including the time you make the application to sponsor her.

Solution seems to be you get PR, the two of you get married and then you sponsor her.
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Old Sep 2nd 2010, 5:01 am
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Default Re: We will have lived together for 361 days: common-law or not?

Originally Posted by The Aviator
That's my interpretation, it says 12 months. Why can she not leave by land, reenter and ask for a visitor permit?

If my understanding is correct, it is not 12 months at any time, it is 12+months continuously up to and including the time you make the application to sponsor her.

Solution seems to be you get PR, the two of you get married and then you sponsor her.
Well she wants to go home for Christmas to see her family (as do I but I may have to stay here on implied status depending on timelines). So she could technically come back here after 1 - 2 weeks holiday back home at Christmas. However, I'd worry that when she tries to re-enter (as a visitor) they will see that she was just in Canada on a 1 year visa and mightn't let her back in. If they start asking her questions she'll have to say that her partner (me) is living here and we're waiting on our PR, which I have heard is reason enough to turn people away.

Getting married for the sake of PR is neither attractive to us nor to a visa officer - it may stink of getting married for the sake of getting PR.

Thanks for your replies though. Not sure what to do.
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Old Sep 2nd 2010, 4:03 pm
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Default Re: We will have lived together for 361 days: common-law or not?

Originally Posted by nevee
Getting married for the sake of PR is neither attractive to us nor to a visa officer - it may stink of getting married for the sake of getting PR.
Whats the difference between claiming common law and getting married? From what you are saying, getting married is a way to stay together no difference to common law. Legal obligations are the same either way. The only difference if you split up you don't need a divorce, other commitments, financial, children if any are the same.

If what you are doing is a way of getting PR, common law or marriage is tantamount to the same thing.
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