Learn the Language

8th Jun 2012 Comments Off on Learn the Language

Last Updated on June 8, 2012 by Steven Meurrens

The following blog post appeared in the June 2012 edition of Canadian Immigrant Magazine.

It is generally recognized that proficiency in either English or French is essential if newcomers to Canada wish to be economically successful here.  While immigrants who cannot converse in one of Canada’s official languages may find some employers who are willing to hire them, their career mobility is limited relative to those who can.  Indeed, numerous recent studies reveal that an immigrant’s language proficiency is perhaps the most important indicator of economic success.

The Government of Canada has taken note of these studies, and has begun implanting language requirements for numerous immigration programs.

The Canadian Language Benchmark

The Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) is the national standard used in Canada for measuring the English language proficiency of adult immigrants and prospective immigrants. It covers four skill areas: reading, writing, speaking, and listening.  Individuals are ranked in these areas on a scale of 1-12.

The Canadian government generally recognizes two tests for measuring an applicant’s CLB level; the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) and the Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program (CELPIP).  While both use different scales than the CLB (the IELTS runs on a scale of 1-9, and the CELPIP runs on a scale of 0 – 6), their test scores correspond to CLB levels.

Current Immigration Programs With Language Testing

The Canadian Experience Class is the main immigration program that currently requires language testing.  For English speaking applicants, the IELTS is the only test that is accepted in this program.  There are numerous combinations of IELTS scores that applicants can obtain to meet the program’s requirements. 

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Post-Graduate Work Permits in British Columbia

7th Jun 2012 Comments Off on Post-Graduate Work Permits in British Columbia

Last Updated on June 7, 2012 by Steven Meurrens

Lately, I have received numerous enquiries regarding which private post-secondary institutions are eligible to have their students receive Post-Graduate Work Permits (“PGWP“) in British Columbia.  Coincidentally, on June 5, 2012, Citizenship and Immigration Canada (“CIC“), issued Operational Bulletin 262 (“OB 262“), which addresses the issue.

First, it is important to note the distinction between students enrolled in a degree program at a private post-secondary institution, and students enrolled in a diploma or certificate program.  All students in Canadian private institutions which are authorized by provincial statute to confer degrees are eligible to participate in the general PGWP.

As well, there is a Pilot Project in British Columbia which provides that diploma and certificate students at certain British Columbia private post-secondary institutions are eligible to receive Post-Graduate Work Permits.  The Pilot Project expires on January 31, 2013, and international students accepted into programs of study at participating institutions after August 31, 2012 are not eligible to participate in the pilot.

Students who have completed a program of study that is at least eight months or more and received a diploma or certificate in a career training program from the following institutions are eligible to apply under the Pilot Project:

  • Sprott-Shaw Degree College
  • Arbutus College of Communication Arts;
  • Business and Technology
  • Ashton College
  • Canadian Tourism College
  • Centre for Arts and Technology
  • Eton College
  • Greystone College
  • John Casablancas Institute of Applied Arts
  • MTI Community College
  • Omni College
  • Pacific Audio Visual Institute
  • Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts
  • Pacific Rim Early Childhood Institute
  • Sprott-Shaw Community College
  • Stenberg College
  • Universal Learning Institute
  • Vancouver Central College
  • Vancouver Film School
  • Vancouver Institute of Media Arts

Additional requirements,

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The “Innocent Mistake” Defence to Misrepresentation

6th Jun 2012 Comments Off on The “Innocent Mistake” Defence to Misrepresentation

Last updated on December 11th, 2019

Last Updated on December 11, 2019 by Steven Meurrens

Canadian immigration law provides that a person who makes an application must answer truthfully all questions put to them for the purpose of the examination.  Every visa applicant has a duty of candour to provide complete, honest and truthful information when applying for entry to Canada.  Any misrepresentation, whether direct or indirect, that either induces, or could induce, an error by a visa officer in the performance of his or her duties, can result in a person being barred from Canada for five years.

Misrepresentation can occur without an applicant’s knowledge.

In Jiang v Canada(Minister of Citizenship and Immigration), Justice Russell stated that:

With respect to inadmissibility based on misrepresentation, this Court has already given section 40 a broad and robust interpretation. In Khan, above, Justice O’Keefe held that the wording of the Act must be respected and section 40 should be given the broad interpretation that its wording demands. He went on to hold that section 40 applies where an applicant adopts a misrepresentation but then clarifies it prior to a decision. In Wang v Canada (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration), 2005 FC 1059, this Court held that section 40 applies to an applicant where the misrepresentation was made by another party to the application and the applicant had no knowledge of it. The Court stated that an initial reading of section 40 would not support this interpretation but that the section should be interpreted in this manner to prevent an absurd result.

In Baro v Canada (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration),

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Immigration Appeal Division Must Address Bona Fides Before H&C

5th Jun 2012 Comments Off on Immigration Appeal Division Must Address Bona Fides Before H&C

Last Updated on June 5, 2012 by Steven Meurrens

The Federal Court has confirmed that s. 65 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act requires that the Immigration Appeal Division determine whether an applicant is a member of the Family Class before considering humanitarian & compassionate considerations (“H&Cs“).

Accordingly, people appearing before the Immigration Appeal Division in a Family Class appeal should be prepared to prove that the applicant is a member of the family class before arguing H&Cs.  This is the case even if the visa officer did not make a determination, or made a negative determination, regarding membership in the Family Class.

For example, if a visa officer rejects a spousal-sponsorship application on the basis of criminality, then at the Immigration Appeal Division the appellant must be prepared to demonstrate bona fides of the relationship prior to analyzing the inadmissibility, and any H&Cs to overcome it.

 

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CIC Office Closures Run Deep

1st Jun 2012 Comments Off on CIC Office Closures Run Deep

Last Updated on June 1, 2012 by Steven Meurrens

The deficit reduction strategy has officially hit Citizenship and Immigration Canada’s Canadian offices.  Here are a list of closures effective today:

Office Closing
PR Cards and Investigation Referrals will be transferred to
Vegerville Referral Files will be transferred to
Citizenship Files will be transferred to

BC
 Kelowna
Expo Office in Vancouver
Vancouver
Vancouver

 Nanaimo
 Expo office in Vancouver
Vancouver
Vancouver

 Prince George
 Expo Office in Vancouver
Vancouver
Vancouver

 Victoria
 Expo Office in Vancouver
Vancouver
Vancouver

AB
Lethbridge
 Calgary
Calgary
Calgary

SK
 Regina
 Saskatoon
Saskatoon
Saskatoon

ON
 Barrie
 St. Clair
Etobicoke
Scarborough

 Kingston
 Ottawa
Ottawa
 Ottawa

 Oshawa
 St. Clair
Scarborough
Scarborough

 Sault Ste. Marie
 St. Clair
Etobicoke
Mississauga

 Sudbury
 St. Clair
Etobicoke
Mississauga

 Thunder Bay
 St. Clair
Etobicoke
Mississauga

QC
 Gatineau
 Ottawa
Montréal
 Ottawa

 Quebec City
 Montréal
Montréal
Montréal

Sherbrooke
 Montréal
Montréal
Montréal

 Trois Rivières
 Montréal
Montréal
Montréal

NB
 Moncton
 Moncton
Moncton
Moncton

 Saint John
 Fredericton
Fredericton
Moncton

PEI
Charlottetown
 Halifax
Halifax
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