3 More Untrue Immigration Myths: Illegal Immigrants in Canada

illegal immigration in canadaThis week’s list of 3 Untrue Immigration Myths has a focus on illegal immigrants, which are often subject to much prejudice in Canada.

Myth: Illegal Immigrants are criminals

Illegal immigration is a fact of life in most countries, including Canada. But illegal immigrants are not committing any crime, because the Canadian Criminal Code doesn’t list it as a crime – anywhere. Sometimes, immigrants have no choice and face persecution, rape, death, war or worse and have no choice but to be illegal while they try to get their lives on track.

Myth: Illegal Immigrants are a drain on Canada’s social services and take jobs

Illegal immigrants cannot work legally, cannot enroll in educational courses lasting longer than six months, must pay for health care even in a costly life-threatening emergency and cannot get welfare or disability payments. These exclusions also extend to people who have allowed their work or study permit to expire or have been visiting Canada and have been in the country for less than six months.

Myth: Illegal Immigrants do not pay taxes

Illegal immigrants cannot work legitimately and therefore cannot pay income taxes. However, they may pay property taxes as well as all applicable sales taxes – while still being ineligible for all of the services and benefits these taxes actually pay for.

Illegal immigrants don’t have it easy in any way in Canada, despite the myth that they do. If you are living in Canada with no status or are an illegal immigrant in Canada, you may have options such as filing a humanitarian and compassionate grounds application, and an immigration lawyer can help you find which one is right for you.

Read our other posts on Canadian immigration myths here and here.

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.

Tags: Humanitarian and compassionate grounds Illegal Immigration Immigration Myths

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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