Immigration Appeals

A refusal of your application by an immigration officer is not always a dead end meaning there is always an opportunity to challenge an immigration officer’s decision or to seek review or apply for some special relief under immigration laws. You can file an appeal to the Appeal Division of the Immigration and Refugee Board (IAD) which is part of the Immigration and Refugee Board (IRB). IAD is an independent tribunal that was created to oversee immigration matters. They operate as an independent body and are not part of the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).

The IAD hears appeals on immigration-related matters pertaining to:

– Sponsorship appeals
– Removal orders appeals
– Residency obligations appeals

Sponsorship appeals

Permanent residents or Canadian citizens whose sponsorship application for a close relative has been refused by the IRCC may appeal the decision for a review to the IAD. Please note, not all sponsorship applications can be appealed. For example, in the case of a parental sponsorship, if the application was refused for misrepresentation, then no appeal could be made.

A family sponsorship application may be rejected for various reasons but for spousal sponsorships the most common reason of refusal is that the relationship is determined not to be genuine. In such situations, it is important to gather new evidence demonstrating that the relationship is in fact real.

Removal orders appeals

If the IRCC issues a removal order against a permanent resident, for example, for having committed a serious crime or for misrepresentation, the affected person can file an appeal to be allowed to stay in Canada and maintain their permanent residence status. However, not all removal order cases may be filed to appeal. For instance, appeals cannot be made when the person is found inadmissible due to a criminal offense punished by imprisonment of 6 months or more in Canada, inadmissibility on security grounds, or violations of human and international rights.

Foreign nationals who do not have a permanent resident visa cannot appeal a removal order to the IAD. Foreign nationals can instead appeal to the Federal Court if they believe that the removal order was issued in error.

Residency obligations appeals

Permanent residents of Canada are required to be physically present in Canada for 730 days (2 years) out of every five years. If the permanent resident does not fulfill the residency obligation, they can lose their permanent resident status. In the case of a loss of permanent residency due to a failure to comply with the residency requirement, an appeal can be made to the IAD, and if allowed,the permanent resident will be allowed to keep their status. If the appeal is dismissed, then the permanent resident status will be lost and the IAD will issue a removal order. The decision of IAD may be appealed to the Federal Court of Canada for a judicial review.

A lawyer should be consulted in all cases to confirm the appeal rights existing in each case and to assist with the appeal process.