There is finally some good news for the many people in Canada who have waited months to see family members and romantic partners who live outside of the country. Due to the pandemic restrictions on non-essential travel, extended family members and non-spouse partners have not been permitted to visit Canada, until now. The Canadian government relaxed the rules on non-essential travel starting on October 7, 2020, and are now permitting some extended family members and unmarried romantic partners to visit their relatives/partners in Canada.
The Government of Canada has separate procedures for visiting Canada depending on the relationship to the traveller and the reason for the visit. The procedures for compassionate visitors who may be coming to attend a funeral, or immediate family, such as spouse or child, differ from the procedures for extended family members. You can consult the Government of Canada website at the links below to learn more about all the requirements for visitors to come to Canada during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Extended family members are classified by the Canadian government as a non-dependent (adult) child, a sibling, a grandparent or a grandchild of a Canadian citizen or permanent resident. As well, Canadian citizens or permanent residents who have been in an exclusive dating relationship for at least one year are allowed to invite their partners to visit them. Please see the Government of Canada website at the link below for a full definition of who can be classified as an extended family member.
For the category of visitors of extended family members or romantic partners, the Government of Canada requires that applicants complete a statutory declaration which their family member/partner needs to sign before an official such as a Notary Public or Commissioner of Oaths. The form is called “Application for Authorization and Statutory Declaration for the Purposes of Entry into Canada for Extended Family Members COVID-19 Emergency Orders in Council under the Quarantine Act.” The visitor to Canada can sign this form either in person or electronically, and then must send the form to their family member or partner to be commissioned. Red Seal Notary has convenient walk-in offices in Toronto and Ottawa where you can have the document commissioned in person. You can also contact our helpful call centre to make appointments to commission this document in person at locations across the country. If you are unable to have the document commissioned in person, Red Seal Notary has a convenient online commissioning service so that you can have the document commissioned virtually.
Once the document is commissioned, it needs to be returned to the applicant outside of Canada who will submit it to the Government of Canada to receive authorization to travel.