Canadian citizenship entitles you to get a marriage visa to marry your Mexico wife and sponsor her application for marriage immigration to Canada. Applying for a marriage visa and preparing for marriage immigration can be a time consuming task and you will need to be organized particularly with your Canada documents. To qualify for a spouse visa you must fulfill these basic criteria:
- You must be a Canadian citizen or legal permanent resident aged 18 years or over
- You must be financially independent and able to support her for 3 years after she gets her permanent residency
- You must also support any dependent children for 10 years or until they are 25
- You must have adequate housing where you, your Mexican wife and any dependants can live without relying on state benefits
When you marry your Mexican spouse you can legalise your Mexico marriage in Canada.
Getting Ready for Marriage Immigration
Before you leave Canada, you must prepare for your marriage immigration. You should go in person to your local Registrar of Marriages to obtain an Affidavit of Marital Status. This certificate costs $50 and proves your single status by confirming that you are not still involved in matrimony with another spouse. You can use it within 3 months of the date of issue.
If you fail to do this in Canada, you can do it in the Canadian Embassy in Mexico prior to the marriage.
You will also need an original or certified copy your Birth Certificate.
If you have been married before you must produce one of the following documents to support the Affidavit of Marital Status:
- If divorced, you will need your Divorce Decree
- if widowed you will need your Certificate of Marriage and Death Certificate of your previous spouse
Changing Your Canada Documents
When official documents issued in Canada are to be used in Mexico, they need to be notarised, “authenticated” and “legalised “in order for them to be valid there.
The first thing you need to do is get a notary stamp and signature from any notary in Canada. Get them “authenticated” by the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT). The purpose of the authentication process is to prove the validity of the documents issued in Canada.
The last thing to do is to get your documents translated into Spanish and “legalised” by the Mexican Embassy. After that your documents acquire legal validity in Mexico.
Documents in Need of Legalisation for Marriage in Mexico
- Affidavit of Marital Status
- Divorce Decree (if relevant)
- Former spouse’s Death Certificate and previous marriage certificate (if relevant)
- Your Birth Certificate
- Name change certificate (if relevant)
- Your Canadian passport cannot be legalised as it is already an internationally recognised document. You must however have photocopies of the ID and bio page notarised as true copies of the original.
Mexican Visa Requirements
As a Canadian citizen you do not need a visa to visit Mexico, providing that your stay does not exceed 180 days. Your passport must be valid for at least six months and have at least two blank pages. You must also obtain a Tourist Card, which is valid for six months and is issued on the flight to Mexico or at the border crossing if entering by land.
Once you have prepared all relevant documents and you have a valid Canadian passport, you may make arrangements to fly to Mexico to join your spouse.
Getting Married in Mexico
You may decide to marry your Mexican bride in Canada, however, getting married in Mexico is a fabulous experience and relatively straight forward, providing you are organised and ensure that you and your Mexican bride have the correct documentation.
Whilst your Mexican bride is excited about planning the marriage ceremony you should make her aware that under both Canadian and Mexican Marriage Law, only the civil registration of your marriage will be recognised as legal and only a legal marriage will allow you to bring your Mexican wife back to Canada.
The legal age for marriage in the Mexico is 18, if your Mexican bride is under 18 years of age she must obtain written consent from her parents or guardians. This should be given personally and in writing in front of the local civil registrar officer. Alternatively, it can be in the form of an affidavit made in the presence of two witnesses.
To register the marriage legally with the Mexican authorities takes a lot of work and you should not underestimate the time or work involved.
Before you register your intent to marry you need to obtain a chest X-ray and blood test. These tests must be carried out in Mexico and the results written in Spanish. You and your Mexican bride must also obtain a joint agreement stating whether the marriage will be subject to communal or separate ownership of property.
The first step in planning your wedding in Mexico is to get a marriage permit from the Mexican National Migration Institute (Instituto Nacional de Migración). This takes approximately two weeks to obtain. The next step is to go to the Registrar’s Office known as the Registro Civil with your Mexican bride and apply for a Marriage Application form‘. You should take your passport and all of the documents you brought with you from Canada along with your medical certificate from your X-ray and blood test, the property ownership agreement and your permit from the Mexican National Migration Institute. Your Mexican bride needs to present a Mexican Affidavit of Marriage Status known as well as her passport, birth certificate, medical certificate and proof that she is no longer married. In some Mexican states, if your Mexican bride has been divorced she must wait for one year before she can marry again.
You must also obtain a sworn statement from two witnesses who are over 18 and who know both of you, which states that they know of no legal reason why you cannot marry. These two witnesses must be present at the official civil ceremony.
Document Check: Canadian Bridegroom
- Original Affidavit of Marriage Status (valid three months from the date of issue) issued in Canada or by the Canadian Embassy in Mexico.
- Original valid Canadian passport
- Original birth certificate
- Original death certificate of deceased spouse if widowed
- Original divorce decree or annulment papers if divorced
- Tourist Card
- Permit from the Mexican National Migration Institute
- Property Ownership Agreement
Document Check: Filipino Bride
- Original Affidavit of Marriage Status
- Original valid passport
- Original birth certificate
- Original death certificate of deceased spouse if widowed
- Medical certificates
Once the Marriage License is obtained, you and your Mexican bride need to go to get the registrar to administer the solemnisation of the marriage. Two witnesses of legal age who made the sworn statement about your capacity to marry must be present. You marriage licence will be issued after the ceremony has taken place. You may also choose to have another wedding ceremony e.g. a church service to mark your wedding. Marriage to your Mexican wife does not automatically qualify you for Mexican citizenship however, Mexico is a country, which permits dual citizenship and in order to become a Mexican citizen you must apply through the official government immigration channels.
Permanent Resident Application
When your Mexican wife comes to Canada she can change her name to that of your own and you can start the marriage visa process. Any Canadian man wishing to bring his Mexican wife to Canada must sponsor her for permanent residency. The process takes between 6 and 18 months. Sponsorship is a part of the Canadian immigration system that allows individuals to come to Canada under the Family Class of immigration.
In your case, you will sponsor your Mexican wife to Canada, as long as you meet the requirements of a sponsor. Sponsorship is an agreement between the Canadian government and you. This agreement is a promise on the part of the sponsor that you will provide your spouse with food, clothes and shelter i.e. all of the basic requirements in order to live in Canada.
The marriage visa sponsorship agreement includes financial support and health care because your Mexican wife will have no access to the social care system. In the sponsorship agreement you promise to sponsor your spouse for at least three years from the day she becomes a permanent resident. You also have to sponsor any dependent children moving with her to Canada for a period of 10 years or until they are 25, whichever comes first.
Spousal Sponsorship Requirements
To qualify as a sponsor, you must meet the following requirements:
- You are over 18 years old and a Canadian wife or permanent resident living in Canada.
- You are single and free to marry
- You have married a Mexican wife in Mexico and intend to live in Canada with her
- You are not on any Social Assistance program
- You are not in default of any previous sponsorship agreement
- You have sufficient funds and you are not bankrupt
- You are not in prison
You may not qualify if one of the following points applies to your situation:
- You previously failed to provide financial support when you signed a sponsorship agreement to sponsor another relative
- You failed to pay alimony or child support
- You received government financial assistance for reasons other than disability
- You were convicted of a violent criminal offence, an offence against a relative or a sexual offence
- You failed to make payments for an immigration loan
- You have declared bankruptcy and have not recovered from it yet.
If you qualify for sponsorship, you can fill out the application forms available from Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC). Read the guide and complete the application. Remember to support the application with relevant documents.
Canada Visa Application
Your Mexican wife must fill out the immigration forms. As part of the application process, she will need to undergo a medical exam and a criminal check. The medical exam is required to make sure that applicants do not have a medical condition that is dangerous to Canadian public health and safety, or would require elaborate treatment by the Canadian health services. The examination results are valid for 12 months and need to be done by authorised doctors. Your Mexican wife must present two valid police certificate from the federal police (Procuraduría General de la República)and the state police showing she has no criminal record.
The next step is to pay you application fee to CIC. You can pay your fees by bank transfer or online. If you choose to pay at the bank, you have to order a receipt of payment, also called immigration form IMM 5401. Remember to bring this form with you to the bank when you pay your fees. If you pay online, make sure you print the receipt of payment form and include it with your application.
Visa Application Fees
The marriage visa application fees are as follows:
- $75 for you as a sponsor
$475 for your Mexican wife
- $150 for a dependent child your Mexican wife who is under 22 and not married
- $550 for a dependant of your Mexican wife who is 22 or older, or who is under 22 and married $490 for the right of permanent residence fee which your Mexican wife will be have to pay before the status is granted.
The last step is to mail your application along with the receipt for the fees paid and all supporting documents to the CIC Case Processing Centre (CPC) in Mississauga, Ontario. You will be notified when your application is received and you can check the status of your application online.
Applications are refused if you provide false information on your application form.