It was only recently when the term, “super visa” was brought to the public’s attention by the Federal Minister of Immigration. This was after the Canadian government decided unilaterally to stop accepting sponsorship applications for parents or grandparents.
The super visa is primarily a visitor visa which allows parents or grandparents of Canadian permanent residents or citizens to come and stay in Canada for a maximum of two years. No other family members are eligible to apply under this category.
Nobody knows how many people have received the new super visa, but concerns have been raised about it being a disappointment. This is in relation to reports that parents, who are now ineligible for sponsorship, have been denied visitor visas – a picture that seems to be in conflict with the rationale behind the creation of the super visa category. Note that the requirements for applying for a super visa are the same as those that will be asked from a regular visitor visa applicant. On top of that, a super visa applicant must also be able to convince the visa officer that he is coming to Canada purely for the purpose of making a visit and not to permanently stay there.
The following are the requirements to prove relationships between grandparents or parents and Canadian citizens or permanent residents in super visa applications:
1. Admissibility based on health grounds as proven by a medical examination to be conducted in a recognized diagnostic center or health facility;
2. Private medical insurance coverage issued by a Canadian insurer, valid for one year from date of entry to Canada, with benefits for health care, hospitalization and repatriation and coverage equivalent to, at least, $100,000;
In spite of the availability of information regarding the super visa, many are still asking about various issues related to the application process, such as the cost of insurance policies in Canada, and whether or not such costs are refundable in cases where the insured parents or grandparents never land in Canada. In response to these questions, a World Financial Group insurance agent says insurance fees are actually refundable, the only requirement being a letter from the Canadian Embassy to the insurer indicating that no visa ever issued. The average cost of insurance intended for a parent is around $3000 per year, and those who depart from Canada on the year of the policy’s validity will be reimbursed the pro-rated amount.
3. A notarized letter of invitation written and signed by the Canadian citizen or permanent resident in Canada, including information about the parent or grandparent being invited, such as complete name, birth date, address and telephone number, purpose for the trip, expected length of stay in Canada, anticipated day-to-day expenses, including accommodation, and date of departure from Canada.