As previously reported, on May 10, 2013,
Citizenship and Immigration Canada ("CIC") announced a
proposed regulatory amendment to the definition of "dependent
child." Once enacted, it would reduce the upper age limit for
dependent children from "under 22" to "under
19" and would remove the exception for children 19 or older
who are financially dependent on their parents and are enrolled in
full-time studies. However, it would not eliminate the exception
for children who, regardless of age, have depended on their parents
for financial support because of a mental or physical
At the time of the initial announcement, CIC had proposed an
effective date of January 1, 2014. However, CIC did not
actually announce the effective date of the proposed change
until June 23, 2014. According to this recent announcement, the new definition of
dependent child became effective as of August 1, 2014.
Permanent residence applications that were already pending prior
to August 1, 2014, will still be subject to the prior definition of
dependent child. However, most permanent residence applications
filed on or after August 1, 2014, will be subject to the new
The regulatory amendments contain transitional measures that
allow certain applicants under multi-step permanent resident
immigration programs, who: (1) were already in the immigration
process on August 1, 2014; but (2) who had not yet submitted their
application for permanent residence; to have their applications
completed based on the previous definition of dependent child.
These transitional measures will apply to certain groups, including
Provincial Nominee Program applicants;
Applicants who have applied under one of Quebec's economic
Refugees abroad and refugee claimants;
Quebec humanitarian cases;
Parents or grandparents whose sponsorship applications were
received before November 5, 2011; and
Privately sponsored refugees whose sponsorship applications
were received before October 18, 2012.
In addition, to ensure that children who meet the definition of
dependent child at the first stage of a multi-step permanent
resident immigration program remain eligible during immigration
processing; the child's age will be "locked in" at
the first formal step of the immigration process. For example, the
age of a child whose parent applies to the Provincial Nominee
Program will be "locked in" on the date that the
application for nomination is made to the province.
The full text of the regulatory amendments appears here.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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