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Custodial Guardianship – International Students

Sending your child to Canada to study internationally? Your parental responsibilities for minor children under 18 continue in Canada. 

Axess Law's licensed notary publics in Greater Toronto can notarize documents pertaining to  custodial guardianship for private school students living in Canada. Your documents must be translated into English or French before we can notarize them. You can arrange translations in your own country before submitting immigration forms to Axess Law to be signed and sealed with a notary stamp.

When is Custodial Guardianship Needed

Custodial guardianship obligations exist whenever:

  • international scholarships are given for study in Canada
  • Canadian relatives invite foreign students to study internationally 
  • a private school offers residential accommodation and adult supervision
  • a friend arranges for your child to live with them
  • you own a house or condo in Canada where they can live. 

If that applies to you, Axess Law's professional notary services can notarize custodianship declaration form IMM 5646 for you. We can meet with you on virtual video calls from your country of residence to notarize immigration forms remotely. Or you can visit our Toronto area law offices in person when you get a temporary visitor visa to make schooling and housing arrangements for minor children. 

We have open law offices near Toronto, with convenient hours and notary publics on site to assist with guardianship and study permit questions.

Why Study in Canada

Canada welcomes foreign students from around the world year round. Your child can study and learn with peers in English, French or bilingual schools, colleges or universities. Age is no barrier for entering postsecondary institutions, provided your child has the academic coursework and grades required. 

Private school and postsecondary admission are competitive and fair. Your child will have every opportunity to compete for spots in top drawer schools with internationally respected reputations.

Canada is a democracy and Commonwealth country, where the rule of law and personal freedoms are valued. Many Canadian cities have bilingual or multilingual neighbourhoods, where your child can mingle with foreign nationals from your country. 

Our cities and towns are clean and safe, with recreation and entertainment for your child to enjoy. Public transportation is easy to use and they can join school excursions, take English or French language lessons or go to foreign movies with friends. 

You can stay in touch 24/7 by phone, censorship-free Internet or video conference call from any computer, tablet or mobile device.

Guardianship of Foreign Students

Foreign nationals under 18 need parental permission to visit, study, live or work in Canada. Canada's international border service, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), may make exceptions for minors 17 and up, but entry to Canada without a parent, legal guardian or custodian is not guaranteed. The Government of Canada requires you to make student guardianship arrangements before your child relocates to ensure they will be properly cared for while living away from home.

Who Can Be a Custodian in Canada

The custodian you choose must be a responsible adult and Canadian citizen or  permanent resident (PR). They must agree to take care of and support your minor child while they are in Canada.

Private School Guardians

Private schools that provide onsite, residential accommodation and supervision for minors act as their custodian while in Canada. Schools can make rules your child must follow and decisions about their health care, well-being, food, clothing, recreation and studies all independently of you. You give the school the right to be your child's temporary custodial guardian by consenting to their attending. 

Your IMM 5646 form creates a legal contract with an Ontario private school. Most schools have student handbooks of policies, rules and penalties. Ask for a copy before your minor child enrolls. 

Relatives or Friends

Before you consent to a relative or friend being your child's guardian, be sure your child is comfortable with the arrangement. If desired, criminal record checks can be arranged by Axess Law's Ontario notary publics.

Legally appointed custodial guardians have the power to make decisions on your behalf, but as parent you may be held accountable for their choices. Canadian courts act in the best interests of the child and can intervene if a custodial guardian mistreats your child or their health or safety are at risk. 

Minors old enough to speak for themselves have a say in immigration hearings. Getting Canadian visitor or study permits for minors can be delayed if your child is reluctant to stay with a custodial guardian you have chosen.   

Guardianship Services

Private guardianship services in Ontario can be arranged for a fee, negotiated between you and the company you select. Private guardians are contacts who respond to questions from school administrators and act on your child's behalf in emergencies, arranging alternate accommodation or dealing with immigration or travel matters. Investigate carefully before signing legal contracts for guardianship services. 

Revoking Custodial Guardianship

Concerns a custodial guardian is unsuitable or untrustworthy can be fixed by revoking parental permission to be legal guardian for your child. You must have alternate arrangements in place to revoke custodial guardianship or travel to Canada yourself to take custody of your child. We make referrals to qualified immigration lawyers if you are summoned for immigration hearings or IRCC officers refuse custodial guardianship requests.

Why You Need a Notary Public

Visitor visas or study permits and custodial guardianship forms are required before minors under 18 can be accepted into Canada. Axess Law has professional notary publics in Greater Toronto Area who can notarize immigration forms for private school students or international study. 

Your child may need a school letter of acceptance and confirmation of an approved COVID-19 readiness plan for their designated learning institution (DLI) before applying for study permits. Mandatory quarantine, travel and health restrictions may apply while they are here. 

Notarize Guardianship Forms

Axess Law’s Ontario notary publics make remote video calls anywhere you are. Our Greater Toronto Area law offices have onsite parking and flexible day or evening appointments, 7 days a week. Book by dialing toll-free to 877-522-9377 or use our online booking form. In Greater Toronto, call our 647-479-0118 lawyer line or drop by these Axess Law offices nearby you.


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