After Applying for a Refugee Claim

When your claim is deemed eligible by an officer from Citizenship and Immigration Canada or Canada Border Services Agency, it will be referred to the Refugee Protection Division of the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (IRB) for a hearing.  You will need to submit a completed Personal Information Form to the IRB by their determined deadline.  They will then contact you with details about your hearing.

If your claim is accepted, you will receive the status of “protected person”, which means you are permitted to remain in Canada and you can apply to become a permanent resident.

If your claim is rejected, you can apply to the Federal Court of Canada for a judicial review of the decision within 15 days after receiving your notice.  In addition, you can find out if you are eligible for pre-removal risk assessment or humanitarian and compassionate considerations.

Pre-removal risk assessment

If you are required to leave Canada, which will result in your return to a country where you would be at risk of persecution or in danger, you will be able to apply for a pre-removal risk assessment (PRRA).  Your application, documents, and other supporting evidence will be reviewed by an officer.  If you had made a refugee claim previously, only new evidence or that which was not presented at the refugee hearing would be considered.  You may have to follow up with an interview.

Written evidence to explain the risks you face if you are removed from Canada will need to be included with your application.

The reviewing officer will take the following risks into consideration:

  • risk of persecution (as defined in the Geneva Convention)
  • risk of torture
  • risk to your life or risk of being subject to cruel and unusual treatment or punishment

You will not be eligible for a PRRA if you are:

  • subject to extradition
  • ineligible for a hearing at the Immigration and Refugee Board due to the Safe Third Country Agreement
  • a repeat PRRA applicant or refugee claimant, less than six months after leaving Canada following a removal order
  • currently recognized as a protected person
  • currently recognized as a Conventions refugee by a country to which you can return

If your application is accepted, you may receive the status of “protected person”, which means you could remain in Canada and apply as a permanent resident.

If it is rejected, you will receive written notice.  Your removal order comes into effect again, and you will have a opportunity to leave Canada with a fair amount of time.  You may apply to the Federal Court of Canada for a review of the PRRA’s decision.

Humanitarian and compassionate review

It can take years to process an application to become a permanent resident on humanitarian and compassionate grounds.  If you have have received a removal order, you must still leave the country on or before the date on the order, but your application will still be processed.  Simply applying will not prevent or delay your removal.

You will be notified in writing of the decision by Citizenship and Immigration Canada.  You cannot appeal a refused application, but in some cases, you can ask the Federal Court of Canada to review the decision.

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