New bill would allow rejected Canadian visa applications an appeal

Refused Canadian visa applications could appeal under new Bill 

A new private-member’s bill has been tabled in the House of Commons by NDP immigration Olivia Chow. This bill, called the Visitor Visa Fairness Act, would allow people with rejected Canadian visa applications to appeal them.

About 200,000 of the million Canadian visitor visas applied for every year are rejected, and these rejections make it difficult for people to have successful applications later on. According to Chow, many of these rejected Canadian visa applications are because of “arbitrary decision making”.

In Australia and the United Kingdom, rejected Canadian visa applications can be appealed. This bill would bring Canada up to speed with a similar process and have the Immigration and Refugee Board hear the appeals.

Bill would provide recourse for rejected Canadian visa applications

 Many people need to visit Canada for weddings, funerals and other events, but sometimes face rejected Canadian visa applications and have no recourse.

 The bill is also supported by a Calling for Visitor Visa Fairness group on Facebook, which contains updates, discussions and stories from individuals who have faced the consequences of rejected Canadian visa applications.

 Chow, according to her Facebook group, proposes:

-The establishment of a formal and free appeals process modeled on the UK and Australia.

-To improve the application process by establishing a clear standard denial procedure.

-The establishment of a protocol to provide more information on the reasons for the denial and ways to address the concerns listed by Citizenship and Immigration Canada.

 These rejected Canadian visa applications are often the result of immigration officers deciding that the applicant may not leave Canada, and there is currently no way for applicants to eventually prove their case.

Any information provided here does not constitute legal advice and is intended for general information only. Should you require legal advise, you are encouraged to contact a lawyer directly. All blog postings are public and are not subject to solicitor/client confidentially. Case results depend on a variety of factors unique to each case, and case results do not guarantee or predict a similar result in any further case undertaken by the lawyer.

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About Michael Niren

Michael is a graduate of Osgoode Hall Law School in Toronto. He is a member of the Law Society of Upper Canada, the Canadian Bar Association’s Citizenship and Immigration Section and the American Bar Association. He is frequently called upon to appear in the media to discuss Canadian and US immigration issues effecting North Americans. He has been interviewed by Canada AM, CTV, Canada News Net, the Globe and Mail and the Toronto Star and has given lectures on immigration topics overseas.

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