The Impact of Covid-19 Disease on Canada Immigration Procedure

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has made changes to immigration procedures and deadlines to protect officials and accommodate immigrants who are being affected by the coronavirus pandemic.

The IRCC has clearly stated that applications will not be rejected for non-compliance at this time. All applications currently in progress at IRCC offices abroad, at case processing centres, and within the Domestic Network will continue to be processed, but may experience delays.

In order to prevent further spread of the coronavirus, the IRCC has temporarily closed some of its visa application centres, and others have been reduced to essential staff only.

The IRCC may continue to request the necessary documents from applicants, such as police certificates, biometrics, passports, medical examinations, and any documents that must be issued by Chinese, Iranian or South Korean authorities.

In-person permanent resident landing appointments and in-person refugee claim appointments will be closed until April 13.

Applicants returning from China, Iran, or South Korea will be granted an additional 30 days to send their documents to IRCC, and an additional 45 days to comply with requests for a medical opinion form.

Applicants are still required to meet the physical presence requirements as per normal procedure. Extra days spent in China, Iran or South Korea due to the virus will not be counted as days in Canada.

Urgent applications for temporary residence will be considered by IRCC offices in China, Hong Kong, Ankara, and Manila.

Permanent residence ( FSW – EES / PNP – EES / AIPP / RNIP and CEC applications)

The IRCC will continue to accept new applications for Canadian permanent residence.

Applications that are complete will continue to be processed as per normal procedures.

Applications that are incomplete due to unavailable documents will be retained in the system and reviewed in 90 days.

New applicants should indicate if they have been affected by service disruptions due to the coronavirus, and will then be granted a 90 day extension to provide all of the necessary documentation. Otherwise, incomplete applications may be rejected.

Temporary residence ( Work permits and Student visas)

If you are a foreign national in Canada and your temporary resident status is about to expire, you may apply for an extension. Applicants must apply online and meet all requirements.

If your application for extension is already in progress, you will be able to remain in Canada until a decision is made.

If your temporary resident status has already expired, you may be eligible to apply for restoration.

The IRCC will not be waiving any fees for temporary residence applications or extensions.

However please be advised that IRCC is unable to guarantee that an application will be completed within the standard timeframe as some applications may require further checks and investigations. Overall processing times are impacted each month by changes in application volumes, seasonal peaks, complex cases, and incomplete applications. Processing times include applications submitted online and by paper. Where available This estimate does not include the time taken by the applicant to provide us with item(s) we request in order to proceed with a Visa application.