Bill C-31, also known as the Protecting Canada’s Immigration System Act introduced strict timelines to Canada’s refugee determination process.  The Canadian government has now introduced the Regulations which provide specifics as to the new timelines. Time limits for scheduling the first-level hearing, for filing and perfecting an appeal and for making a decision on an appeal will be as follows: The Basis of Claim document shall be submitted not later than 15 days after the referral of the claim to the Immigration and Refugee Board, if the claim is made at […]

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On February 16, Jason Kenney and the Conservative government introduced Bill C-31, the Protecting Canada’s Immigration Act.  The Act makes many reforms to Canada’s refugee system, and amends previous amendments to Canada’s immigration legislation contained in the Balanced Refugee Reform Act which have not yet come into affect.  Bill C-31 was greeted by many refugee lawyers and advocates with much criticism, and was received with particular indignation from the New Democratic Party. It is not difficult to see why the NDP was outraged by the introduction of Bill C-31.  Less than […]

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During Canada’s 2015 federal election, the Liberal Party of Canada, led by Justin Trudeau, promised that if they were elected government that Canada would lift its visa requirement on Mexico.  This campaign promise is reflected in now Prime Minister Trudeau’s mandate letter to John McCallum, the Minister of Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship, which states that one of Minister McCallum’s top priorities will be to lift the visa requirement on Mexico. The decision by the previous Conservative Government of Canada in 2009 to implement a visa requirement for Mexican citizens was extremely […]

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In 2011 I wrote about a resolution at the Conservative Party Convention to strip the citizenship of people who take up arms against Canadian soldiers or other types of treason.  Fast forward to 2013, and it seems like the government may adopt a similar policy. So with the New Democratic Party, the Official Opposition in Canada, about to have their Policy Convention in Montreal, I thought it would be prudent to state the resolutions of theirs directly related to immigration (as opposed to resolutions which would indirectly influence immigration by impacting […]

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The purpose of this blog post is to provide an overview of the changes to Pre-Removal Risk Assessments (“PRRAs“) resulting from Bill C-31 which are now in effect.  A PRRA is a paper application in which individuals can submit that they would be at risk of persecution, risk to life, or risk of cruel and unusual treatment or punishment if returned to their countries of origin.  For most applicants, a positive determination results in the granting of refugee protection and the opportunity to apply for permanent residence as a protected person. […]

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On December 5, 2012, the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness (the “Minister“) made his first designation of irregular arrival under Bill C-31, the Protecting Canada’s Immigration System Act. The Washington Post is reporting that the 85 people were designated, including 35 children.  Thirty of the irregular arrivals have already been arrested thus far.  The refugee claimants appear to be Romanian, and arrived in Canada between February and October.

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Yesterday, Citizenship and Immigration Canada (“CIC“) began retroactively closing existing Pre-Removal Risk Assessment (“PRRA“) applications for which Bill C-31’s 12-month bar applies. Bill C-31 amended the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act’s (“IRPA“) provisions regarding who was ineligible to apply for a PRRA.  IRPA now provides that: 112(2) .. a person may not apply for [a PRRA] if (b.1) subject to subsection (2.1), less than 12 months have passed since their claim for refugee protection was last rejected — unless it was deemed to be rejected under subsection 109(3) or was rejected on the basis of section E or […]

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The start of summer has seen Citizenship and Immigration Canada (“CIC”) make numerous changes to Canadian immigration programs.  Many application classes have been modified for new applicants, if not outright suspended.   The changes include: “Pausing” the acceptance of new Federal Skilled Worker Program and Federal Investor Applications; Prohibiting certain businesses from participating in the Temporary Foreign Worker Program; Restricting the availability of humanitarian & compassionate considerations and Pre-Removal Risk Assessments; and Mandatory language testing for lower-skilled provincial nominees. Fifth Set of Ministerial Instructions Results in Suspension of New Federal Skilled Worker […]

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On June 9, 2012, the Government of Canada published regulatory changes in the Gazette regarding the Private Sponsorship of Refugees Program (“PRSP“). Under the PRSP, there are three types of sponsors.  The first are Sponsorship Agreement Holders (“SAHs“).  SAHs are local, regional, and national incorporated organizations that have signed multi-year agreements with Citizenship and Immigration Canada for the purpose of submitting sponsorship cases on a regular basis.  The second are Groups of Five (“G5s“), which are five or more Canadian citizens or permanent residents who live in the applicant’s expected community […]

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Some Twitter followers have asked me to explain my comments regarding a press release that I have described as extremely misleading. On February 22, 2012, Citizenship and Immigration Canada released a press release titled “Protecting Canada’s Immigration System Act Earning Rave Reviews“.  The press release contains quotes from politicians, lawyers, the media, and interest groups.  After reading it, one would reasonably assume that everyone quoted supported Bill C-31, the Protecting Canada’s Immigration System Act. However, anyone remotely familiar with who some of the people quoted in the press release are will […]

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