Skip to main content

COVID-19: For more information, visit our page on family law during the pandemic.

Separation and divorce

The impact of separation on immigration status

You’re not a Canadian citizen, and you’re worried that your recent separation will affect your right to stay in Canada? Here’s an overview of the possible consequences of separation on certain types of immigration status. This information applies both to married couples and de facto partners.


People awaiting permanent residence

If your sponsorship application has not yet been finalized, meaning you are not yet a permanent resident, a separation may have serious consequences for your immigration status.

If you and your ex are no longer a couple, or if you have stopped living together, the sponsorship application will be refused and you will not be granted permanent residence. You will have to leave Canada unless you are able to regularize your immigration status in some other way.

People who are permanent residents

If you have already been granted permanent residence status, your separation will have no impact on your immigration status. This is the case even if your spouse sponsored you. You can remain in Canada as a permanent resident.

Did you know?

If your ex sponsored you, they must provide for your essential needs (for example, housing, food, clothing) for three years from the date you became a permanent resident. This obligation continues even if you separate. If your ex refuses to provide this support, you could be eligible for social assistance (welfare).


Are you looking for a lawyer, a psychologist, a notary, or a mediator?

Find a resource


The information presented on this page is not a legal opinion or legal advice. This page explains in a general way the law that applies in Quebec. To obtain a legal opinion or legal advice on your personal situation, consult a legal professional.

Available soon on JuridiQC

A simple tool to help you start your joint application for divorce

JuridiQC will guide you, step by step, to simplify the process for you. Stay tuned, and subscribe to our social networks.

Are you experiencing domestic violence?

Get help