The Immigration and Refugees Canada has an excellent record of human rights and is signatory to the Geneva Convention of 1953 at the United Nations. Canada is committed to offering refuge to people who are forced to flee their country of origin or nationality for fear of persecution due to one of the following five reasons: political opinion, race, religion, nationality or their membership to a particular social group and gender.

The Immigration and Refugee Board are also willing to provide protection to a refugee claimant that is basing their claim on a risk to life or on a fear of torture or cruel, undeserved or disproportionate punishment in their country of citizenship

Refugee claimants are permitted to represent themselves or have legal representation and the IRB provides them with a certified interpreter at their hearing. The refugee process in Canada is presently a process that takes eight months to two years to process to completion. Refugee claimants may obtain employment authorizations while they are in process.

Refugee claimants are no longer able to make a refugee claim at the Canadian/U.S. border unless they have a close relative already in Canada with status or who is in process either as a refugee or as a permanent resident

Many refugee claimants that are turned down by the IRB in Canada are able to obtain Permanent Resident status in Canada by way of a Humanitarian & Compassionate Grounds case submitted from within Canada. However, Humanitarian & Compassionate Grounds cases are not easy cases that are easily accepted either, there must exist strong humanitarian grounds in order to qualify.

Either way they are granted a right to a refugee hearing. Refugee claimants must meet specific criteria such as they are not initiating a second refugee claim after being refused without leaving Canada for at least 90 days and are not presently under a removal order that has not been executed. 



Maureen Elizondo Immigration Legal Services

204 Markham Street, Toronto, Ontario



Call(416) 762-2525

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