before you send your application


May 16, 2006
There have been a lot of visa denials lately and I think some words of advice for those who are starting the visa process would be helpful...I wish this info was available when i was going crazy questioning my application and the proof we provided. Hopefully people will add their insight and help out those who are just getting started.

For anyone reading this that is about to send in an application under the common-law or marriage class,

Look over your application 1 million times and take a minute to look at the application from the perspective of someone who is against you or would want to deny difficult as it is, remove your emotion and look at it as paperwork.

Look for holes in your application or things that immigration could question about your relationship and provide supporting documents to cover yourself whether it is a letter of explanation or more official proof.

Based on the recent article posted in another visa thread, there is a 34% or
1 in 3 chance your application will be refused.

This process can be unfair, confusing, frustrating and often punishes the innocent in an attempt to protect the innocent.

Immigration wants to see the progression of your relationship and continued communication and normal relationship type things happening before and after your wedding. Don't assume a small detail doesnt matter because that small detail can/will cause your visa to be denied.

Provide all the proof you can find however small or seemingly insignificant. If you dont have enough, dont send your application until you do have enough. You will be saving time in the end.


New member
Mar 9, 2008
On my travels to and from the Dominican Republic, I keep everything (even if it may seem insignificant). Photographs, business cards, stuff scribbled on napkins, receipts from grocery stores, etc. I use phone cards as well as have good long distance plan (photocopy these). I email my spouse regularly and keep all received emails from him. I collect everything like a pack rat...I keep these things in case the CIC asks for more evidence. Have any person that travels with you write a letter stating that they have met your spouse/boyfriend. I keep all paper receipts of my airline, train tickets, bus tickets. All I can say is keep EVERYTHING. I don't stay in hotels when I travel so I collect what I can from where I am...I can't think of any other stuff right now but another point to remember before sending your application to CIC would be to photocopy the application completely from front to back for you and your spouse to have a copy to review in case of interview.


New member
May 17, 2007
Although you should keep proof of everything in your back pocket, I dont agree that you should send everything you've ever collected. If the "proof" you are sending in isnt personalized with your name and/or his name, dates etc. it really isnt proof of anything (i've heard of ppl sending business cards, receipts, napkins etc.). I have heard on more than one occasion immigration say to people, for example, that sending in all used calling cards you've ever used (some ppl send 100's) doesnt prove you called that person....they have even said "you could have picked these up on the street".

In my opinion its quality and not quantity:
- send pictures that tell a story, not just of you posing & smiling at the camera. The more candid they are the better. You in a romantic moment, other ppl who dont look like dominicans in the picture, etc. Include a description of that moment/memory on the back of the story. Name the ppl in the picture, etc.
- if you use calling cards to call your partner, dont use a land line but use your cell phone. I know this will kill your minutes, however, you now have that calling card number itemized on your cell phone bill. If you send copies of all your cell phone bills with that number highlighted and you send 1 calling card you are showing how many times you've called with "a card". What i used to do was call my husbands cell directly so that it registered the dominican call and would follow right after with the calling card. send a little note with an explanation of how you use the calling cards etc.
- if you stay at hotels, keep all your receipts of your stay as that will include both your names
- keep copies of your flight receipts, car rental receipts, etc. anything that may have his or your name on it.
- when sending copies of your passport include all the pages not just the ones with stamps on it. This gives them the full picture of your passport & travels. To make it easier, summarize your passport stamps on a cover page giving them the date ranges you travel so they dont have to search for it.
- if you can afford it, go on a real honeymoon outside of the country. There are a few places that accept dominicans without a visa. Ie. Cuba is one of them and its an easy flight from Santo Domingo. This will show that your partner has travelled and has come back, and may give a little more substance to your marriage since they like to know all the details of the wedding (reception, ceremony, guestes, etc.)

Again, its all about organization and quality of the application. My view on this is that if you send too much stuff that has NO significance it makes your application seem messy and overwhelming. As an employee, you can imagine that they would want to look at shorter organized one versus one that looks like it needs a lot of work. Its perception that its less work for them. Ensure you follow the instructions carefully, prepare the package in the order of the checklist and make sure it is all submitted neat and tidy.

I think this has more power than many people think.
I know that I'm contradicting what other ppl are saying, however, my process took all of 8 months with no interview(Sep 2008-Apr 2009) and i think that presentation of facts had alot to do with it.

If by chance you have an interview and they need more proof, you have all that other stuff saved up and could pull it out when you need it. I just dont think its necessary to send "stuff" for the sake of showing volume.

Just my two cents :) Good luck to everyone.


Jan 23, 2007
I agree with everything being organized however I don't agree with not sending everything you can.

I sent everything I had that had anything to do with us being together and a couple. they want proof that you are out doing things together as a regular couple does and usually there is some trail of paperwork associated with that, for example receipts.

I sent down a lot of information but I did set it all up neatly in coloured file folder envelopes I bought from Staples.

Each one holds quite a bit and I labelled the front of each with our names and what was in each one. This way there was one with my forms as the sponsor, one for his forms as the applicant, one for photos - separated photos of before the wedding, the wedding, after the wedding - all dated on the back with details etc. of what the photos was about. I probably sent a couple hundred photos, especially of the 2 families together. Then I had one for all the calling cards and phone bills. Then another for just e-mails as I saved every one and printed them all out. Then another for receipts, bills, airline tickets, any other paper reecipt etc. I may have had.

It was a lot as it filled up a Staples paper carton and was very heavy. But it was worth it as we never got asked for more evidence of our relationship and my husband was in Canada with me 7 months and a few days later with no interview at all.

But I must say too that we did get married a year after we met and are the same age. I know none of that should matter but obviously with some of the denials lately this is something they are really looking at.

I cannot stress enough the need to read, re-read and re-read again the application package. Be prepared before you sit down to do your application. Turn off all distractions and focus soley on your future together. It deserves your sole attention. Then make a checklist of all information you need to get together to get the process started before you fill everything out. Be organized and on top of things. It does matter.

Good Luck to you all!


New member
Apr 15, 2007
Thanks for all the great info!
I did as you did Lexi, I had 5 different coloured folders with all the different documents organized. I had airline receipts, resort receipts, bracelets from our vacations, 160 pictures from the 12 visits and our wedding and reception. I included a detailed photo legend explaining all the pictures. I wrote my own 13 page letter detailing our relationship for the past 3 years. I had 8 letters from different family members and friends, some who had met my husband others who haven't. I had my parents' and sister's plane tickets from our wedding. I had phone bills and phone cards from the last three years. I kept wedding ring receipts. I even had a few Caribe Tour Bus receipts from visits to his parents. I photocopied all the pages of my passport with all the stamps from the 12 visits.
It took months of organizing!
I read, re-read, re-read and again re-read the guide that goes with the application. I went through the application one hundred times and then even had someone read through it at my MP's office.
I finally labeled all the folders and sent it all off July 27!
Here's hoping that all that work will pay off soon :)