#33: Spousal Sponsorship – 2nd Marriage in the Philippines

Happily ever after...

That’s what we expect when we get married. But the reality is, not all marriages go as planned. Those complications in life might make it harder to have spousal sponsorship.


Are you a Canadian citizen or permanent resident who is on your second marriage in the Philippines? Are you unsure whether you’ll be able to sponsor your spouse and bring him/her to Canada? Join us in this episode where I put to ease Brad, whose situation might be similar to yours.

Brad writes:


"Hey Daphne. I’m a Canadian and I was previously married in the Philippines. Unfortunately, that relationship didn’t work out and I filed for divorce here in Canada. 

I met someone else and we got married in the Philippines last June. I’d really like to sponsor my wife to come to Canada. Since this is my second marriage in the Philippines, I’m afraid that I may not be able to sponsor her anymore as I heard there’s no divorce in the Philippines. 

Can you please confirm if I’m still qualified to sponsor my second wife given my situation? 

By the way, I didn’t get a chance to sponsor my first wife before we separated."

My answer to Brad’s question is a few questions:

  • Were you a Canadian citizen when you married your first wife in the Philippines?
  • Were you a Canadian citizen when you filed for divorce in Canada?
  • Was your second wife single when you got married in the Philippines?
  • Did you follow the correct procedures in obtaining your marriage license for your second marriage?
  • Was your second marriage already endorsed by the Local Civil Registrar to the PSA?


If you’re in a similar situation and you answered yes to all my questions, you may be able to sponsor your wife to Canada.

The Philippine government recognizes a divorce legally obtained abroad by an alien spouse.

In Brad's case, since he was already divorced before he married his second wife, and she was single at the time of his marriage, then they had no legal impediment to marry each other - that makes his second marriage valid.

As per Canadian Immigration operational guidelines, a marriage must be valid where it took place and also valid under Canadian law. Based on the information Brad provided, his marriage is valid in both the Philippines and in Canada.

Brad, I hope this helps you move forward with your application to sponsor your spouse for permanent residence in Canada.

How about you? What brings you here? Are you in the same situation as Brad? Or is yours slightly different?

Don't be left wondering - let me know about your personal circumstances, and we can work towards getting rid of any doubts you might have.

If you have any questions, click the button below and send them in.

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