Last Updated on October 30, 2020 by Steven Meurrens
On October 30, 2020, Marco Mendicino, Canada’s Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (“IRCC”), tabled Canada’s 2020 Annual Report to Parliament on Immigration. The publication of the Report to Parliament on Immigration is an annual occurrence in which Canada’s immigration department summarizes Canadian immigration statistics of the previous year and provides immigration levels planning for the future. This year’s report was especially anticipated because of uncertainty over how Canada’s planned immigration levels would be impacted by COVID-19.
Where We Are Coming From
In 2019, Canada welcomed 341,180 permanent residents, the third highest level of immigration in the country’s history, exceeded only by 1912 and 1913. Of this, 74,586 were individuals who transitioned from temporary resident status to permanent. The economic immigration class continued to be the largest source of permanent resident admissions, at approximately 58% of all admissions in 2019. Overall numbers were also up for Canada’s family reunification, protected person and humanitarian classes.
IRCC in 2019 also approved 404,369 work permits and 402,427 study permits. When accompanying family members are factored in, this means that the number of people who entered Canada with temporary status greatly exceeded the number of permanent residents admitted.
To briefly digress, when it comes to the impacts of immigration on Canada’s economy, housing prices, social cohesion, etc., the media often focuses on the number of permanent residents admitted to Canada. However, as can be seen in the above statistics, the admission of permanent residents only tells part of the story regarding who is coming to Canada, and is not reflective of the total number of people actually admitted to Canada.
In the 2019 Report to Parliament on Immigration,Read more ›
Last updated on February 21st, 2021
Last Updated on February 21, 2021 by Steven Meurrens
In this episode we provide an overview of family law issues that immigrants and their Canadian sponsors should be aware of, inlcuding the recognition of foreign marriages, how divorce works, threatening to have an ex-spouse deported and the difference between common-law and marriage and getting a marriage anulled.
Ari Wormelli practices family law with YLAW Group.
The topic is relevant to Canadian immigration law because sponsored spouses are statistically much more likely to get divorced than the general Canadian public.Read more ›
Last updated on April 6th, 2021
Last Updated on April 6, 2021 by Steven Meurrens
Aris Daghighian is a senior associate with Green and Spiegel LLP in Toronto. He represented the Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers as intervenors in Brown v. Canada, 2020 FCA 130.
In this episode we discuss the issues raised in the case, including how immigration detention works in Canada, what the disclosure obligations should be on the government in an immigration detention proceeding and whether there should be a maximum time that someone can be held in immigration detention.
On April 1, 2021 the Immigration and Refugee Board issued updated detention guidelines in response to the Brown decision. They stated:
As a result of the FCA decision in Brown and the feedback received through our consultations, the IRB has revised the Guideline in the following ways:
- Clarify that there must be a nexus to an immigration purpose for detention to continue.
- Reinforce the Division’s obligation to consider sections 7, 9 and 12 of the Charter in exercising its discretion concerning whether or not detention is warranted.
- Confirm that consideration of conditions of detention is an extension of the ID’s Charter jurisdiction.
- Reinforce that the Minister has the legal burden to establish that detention is lawfully justified and remains on the Minister throughout the detainee’s period of detention.
- Reinforce that the Division must decide afresh whether continued detention is warranted at each detention review.
- Recognize that there is no obligation on the person concerned to lead fresh evidence between detention reviews for the ID to reach a different result.
Last Updated on October 24, 2020 by Steven Meurrens
Civil forfeiture is a process in which the government seizes assets from persons suspected of involvement with crime without necessarily charging the owners with wrongdoing. Did you know that in British Columbia the government can seize and forfeit your car if you speed? Or that police can “seize first ask later” for property that is less than $75,000? This was a fascinating look at an area of law that receives little scrutiny, especially in how it can relate to immigration.
Bibhas Vaze is a criminal defence lawyer in Vancouver.
4:45 – An overview of New Can and how it relates to civil forfeiture.
5:30 – What is civil forfeiture?
13:15 – Who has the onus of proving there is a tracing of property to unlawful activity?
16:50 – Can the government seize property that is partially the proceed of crime or that was used to commit unlawful activity?
17:10 – What is unlawful activity in the civil forfeiture context?
19:20 – What is the size of British Columbia’s Civil Forfeiture Office? How much property has it seized since its inception?
20:30 – Do all civil forfeiture cases have to go to trial?
25:10 – When is the property actually seized?
29:00 – What level of connection between the unlawful activity and the property is necessary in order for property to be seized?
32:20 – What is constitutional creep, and how does it play into civil forfeiture?
37:50 – If someone is ordered by a criminal court to pay a fine or restitution,Read more ›
Last Updated on October 24, 2020 by Steven Meurrens
The Supreme Court of Canada in October issued its decision in R v. Tran, a case which Peter litigated. Deanna, Peter and Steve discuss the issues that the Supreme Court addressed in this landmark decision, including whether conditional sentences are terms of imprisonment for the purposes of deportation and retrospectivity in law.
This was the first of two Supreme Court cases that Peter arguedin Ottawa this year. While he was in Ottawa for the second case, he joined Michael Spratt and Emilie Taman, the creators of the Docket, a fantastic podcast about criminal law in Canada. Peter, Emilie and Michael discussed all sorts of issues regarding the intersection of immigration and criminal law, and Peter even explained how he got into practicing immigration law.
Read more ›
Last updated on June 22nd, 2021
Last Updated on June 22, 2021 by Steven Meurrens
Regulation 200(3)(a) provides that an officer shall not issue a work permit to a foreign national if there are reasonable grounds to believe that the foreign national is unable to perform the work sought.
In jurisprudence on applications for skilled worker class permits it has also been held that if the officer has concerns about the veracity of documents, procedural fairness demands that the officer make further inquires. However, an officer is generally not under a duty to inform a skilled worker class permit applicant about his concerns when they arise directly from the requirements of the legislation or regulations. As the Federal Court of Canada noted in Li v. Canada (Citizenship and Immigration), 2012 FC 484, the same applies in work permit applications.
As the court held in Kumar v. Canada (Citizenship and Immigration), 2020 FC 935, because of the legislative requirement that officers not issue work permits to foreign nationals if they believe that the foreign national is unable to perform the work sought, then even if Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada’s online checklist does not specifically require documents such as diplomas, academic transcripts, or certificates of English proficiency, an officer can refuse an application if they are not provided when requested by an officer.
On the specific issue of language proficiency, officers can expect more than an English language application and cover letter to verify an applicant’s ability to speak and write in English, where there are reasonable grounds to believe that such language skills are necessary to perform the work sought.Read more ›
Last Updated on October 20, 2020 by Steven Meurrens
One of the interesting trends of Canadian immigration during the past five years has been the explosion of India as a source country, the flat-lining of China, and the decline of the Philippines. There has also been a steady increase in immigrants from Brazil, Eritrea, the USA and Nigeria.
Read more ›
Last Updated on October 18, 2020 by Steven Meurrens
There would be perhaps few things as frustrating for the potential employers of foreign workers than to go through the Labour Market Impact Assessment process only to learn that they were not considered to be an employer by the Department of Employment and Social Development Canada.
According to the Temporary Foreign Worker Program manual, an employer is an entity (e.g. person, business, corporation or organization) that makes an offer of employment to one or more foreign nationals who provide labour in return for compensation for a specified period of time. The employer is generally the entity that hires, controls working conditions and remunerates the foreign national.
The Manual further states:
Entities Considered the Employer of a Foreign National under the TFW Program:
A person, business, corporation or organization based in Canada that makes an offer of employment to one or more foreign nationals.
A person, business, corporation or organization that is not based in Canada that makes an offer of employment to one or more foreign nationals to work in Canada. For identification purposes, it is strongly recommended that the foreign-based employer obtain a Canadian business number to facilitate the TFW Program’s assessment of their genuineness.
Group of Employers
In cases where two or more entities are determined to share employer responsibilities by the Department, a group of employers may make an offer of employment to a foreign national.
• All parties handling employer responsibilities relating to the employment of a foreign national (via an LMIA) are considered to be part of a group of employers for the purpose of the TFW Program.Read more ›