HomeTagCanada Immigration Laws Archives - Immigration Lawyer Vancouver, Canada | Sas & Ing Immigration Law Centre

Many travellers to Canada find themselves turned away at the border when a CBSA officer finds they have a criminal record.  In the post 9/11 world of continuously enhanced border security, CBSA officers are able to access an individual's criminal history with a swipe of a passport.  How can you  be permitted to Canada if you have a criminal conviction in your past?  The Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA) provides both permanent and temporary solutions.

Often the clients that come to see us have previously worked with other immigration professionals.  In many cases they have not been advised according to best practices and/or have placed misguided trust in those professionals.  One of the most blatant misguided practices is to have applicants sign blank immigration application forms and then rely on the immigration professional to complete the application on their behalf.  If an immigration professional asks you to do this, warning bells should go off immediately and you should find another professional to work with. 

Immigration has been a popular subject in the news in the past several weeks since Conservative leadership candidate, Kellie Leitch, suggested that potential immigrants should be screened for “anti-Canadian values”. This suggestion has been heavily criticized and dissected in the media. Some have dismissed the idea as being anti-Canadian in itself, while others have criticized the idea as simply “unworkable”. We can likely all agree that there is such a thing as “Canadian values”, but is the idea of screening for them really unworkable or just unpopular, or both? Here are some considerations from an immigration processing standpoint.

We are frequently approached by self employed business people who are interested in establishing Canadian operations and would like to immigrate to Canada as well.  You would think that Canada would be welcoming of the entrepreneurial spirit that business self starters bring to the economy in terms of both tax revenue and job creation.  Yet Canada's current immigration program is very limited in options for self-employed business people.  Let's review what immigration options are available for the business person.

The new Express Entry program is going to completely transform Canada’s Immigration Program. Historically Canada's economic immigration program was an applicant driven responsive program. Individuals who decided that they wanted to immigrate to Canada, submitted an application and the government was bound to consider and assess that application. The number of applications received was always far greater than the number of applications that the government could process and over time a considerable backlog developed of Skilled Worker, Entrepreneur and Investor applicants which ultimately led to the suspension of these categories. The Skilled Worker program was eventually re-opened in 2013 with significant changes but the Investor and Entrepreneur categories have been formally terminated. In order to avoid future backlogs the government has devised a new program entitled Express Entry which is still in the process of being finalized. However, recent Ministers of Immigration have been publicizing CIC's newest immigration model which is set to be introduced by January 2015.

The topic of illegal workers has been featured prominently in the news recently with Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) in Vancouver conducting raids on several construction sites with television cameras in tow. This has drawn considerable media attention and has resulted in the BC Civil Liberties Association filing a formal complaint with the Privacy Commissioner against CBSA for filming migrant workers for a reality television series.

People often ask me what the most serious immigration infraction is. They expect that I will say something like, “working illegally, living underground without status, or being deported” but actually it’s the consequences for misrepresentation. The Immigration Refugee Protection Act (IRPA) sets out the criteria for misrepresentation as well as the penalties which are significant and can include loss of status, permanent separation from family members, fines and even jail time. Furthermore the trend in the past few years for Canada Immigration is a zero tolerance policy towards misrepresentation with penalties likely to increase.

On October 25, 2012, Minister Kenney implemented new legislation aimed at targeting marriage fraud. The new spousal sponsorship provisions provide that couples who have been in a spousal relationship for less than two years or that do not have children together, will be given conditional permanent residence that requires the couple to live together as spouses for a period of two years from when the sponsored spouse arrives in Canada as a Permanent Resident.

Sas and Ing Immigration Law Centre LLP

A partnership between Catherine Sas Law Corporation and Victor Ing Law Corporation

Copyright © sasanding 2021