If you are established in Canada, most often, you don’t have legal status in Canada, and you do not fit within any existing immigration categories, you may be able to apply for permanent residence based on Humanitarian and Compassionate (H & C) grounds.
Normally, a foreign national who wants to immigrate to Canada must apply for and obtain a permanent resident visa from outside of Canada. However, if you have an exceptional situation, or sometimes even you are inadmissible, you can apply for an exemption from immigration’s requirement based n H & C considerations.
In order to be considered for an exemption from the usual immigration requirements, you must:
- Demonstrate that there are sufficient and compelling reasons for you to be granted an exemption allowing you to apply for permanent residence from within Canada
- Prove the unusual hardship you will be forced to experience should you have to return to your home country or country of residence
The following factors are usually considered when assessing an H & C application. Of course, not all factors will apply to every case.
- Establishment in Canada
- Ties to Canada
- The best interests of any children affected by your application
- Factors in your home country or country of residence
- Health considerations
- Family violence considerations
- Consequences of the separation of relatives
- Inability to leave Canada has led to establishment
- Any other relevant factor you wish to have considered
Effective April 1, 2011, all existing H & C applications and applications for pre-removal risk assessments (PRRA) were transferred to Backlog Reduction Office (BRO) in Vancouver, and all new H & C applications and PRRA applications are required to be submitted to the BRO in Vancouver, which will review, triage, and distribute the files to either BRO in Niagara Falls or BRO in Montreal.
The approval and refusal of an H & C case is highly discretionary. It is extremely important to prepare a strong application from the very beginning. Even after your application is submitted, an on-going efforts need to be made to continue to build a strong case in order to fight for the officer’s positive discretion.
Mary Zhang has years of experience with H&C applications. Contact Maxcan at our office in Markham, Ontario.