Canada - Government Information/Visa Refusal

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Question
Hi Tim,
I had traveled to Kenya in 2011 for a humanitarian trip where I met my current boyfriend. I have recently traveled back to Kenya to visit him and while I was there we applied for a temporary visa for him to come visit me in Canada. Prior to my return, we were informed that his application was refused due to his lack of travel history and a failure to satisfy an immigration officer that he would return back to Kenya. Within his application he did not include his current employment as he had just began a new job therefore, I realize this did not help the situation. However, we are now unsure what the next course of action should be; whether to re apply with a new application or appeal the decision? If we were to re apply, is there a necessary time-frame you must wait? Also, I am now unsure what information should be included that would assist in obtaining an approved application, such as our relationship history and whether that be helpful for a temporary visa or not?
Any assistance would be very much appreciated.
Thank you in advance,
Megan

Answer
Dear Megan,

Applicants for a temporary resident visa who have been refused can re-apply as many times as they wish. There is no time limit, but one will want to be sure that there is some chance of being accepted. Before re-applying the applicant would be wise to first obtain a copy of the electronic file under the Access to Information Act to see exactly what reasons motivated the immigration officer's decision. More often than not, the refusal letter is vague and unhelpful, so the officer's notes may shed more light on the case.

To obtain a copy of the electronic or Global Case Management System (GCMS) file, follow the instructions on the Citizenship and Immigration Canada website here:

IMMIGRATION CANADA - ACCESS TO INFORMATION REQUESTS
http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/department/atip/requests-atip.asp
Only a Canadian resident can make the request. Be sure to obtain the applicant's authorization before applying. You may need some assistance deciphering the officer's notes because of the acronyms and jargon used.

Misrepresentation on an application can have serious consequences. Applicants found to have misrepresented their situation are normally barred from re-applying for two years from the date there is a finding of misrepresentation. It also affects their credibility in later applications.

Lastly, you should know that immigration officers must be satisfied that temporary resident visa applicants will return home after their visit to Canada before approving an application. To make this determination, the officer looks at a number of factors: whether the applicant has a good, secure job; strong family ties in their country of residence; and whether the trip otherwise makes sense. When an applicant from a country like Kenya shows up with his Canadian girlfriend, the officer is going to assume the worst: either that the boyfriend is using the Canadian to get into Canada permanently and illegally or that the boyfriend really wants to stay with the girlfriend and has no reason to return home. Either way, the applicant will be in a catch-22 situation. In such cases, it may be worthwhile getting some professional immigration advice.

Applicants who fail to get a temporary resident visa often choose to apply later on for a permanent resident visa in the spousal category. This too can be problematic, because the applicant must satisfy the officer that the relationship is genuine and not entered into primarily to secure admission to Canada. Since relationships of convenience are a big immigration problem, Canadians who are considering marrying a foreign national and sponsoring their admission to Canada should ensure they are fully informed of the risks. Immigration Canada is currently running an awareness campaign on this issue.

IMMIGRATION CANADA - FRAUDULENT RELATIONSHIPS AWARENESS
http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/information/protection/fraud/marriage.asp

To better understand the spousal immigration program, consult this link:

IMMIGRATION CANADA - SPOUSAL IMMIGRATION PROGRAM
http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/immigrate/sponsor/spouse.asp

I know this may not be exactly the hopeful answer you were looking for, Megan. I have thirty years of immigration experience and have seen almost every type of case imaginable. My advice is to be patient, cautious, well-informed and to seek out the counsel of others as you proceed further.

I apologize for the delay in my response, and hope I have been helpful nonetheless.

Best wishes,

Tim Morson
Registered Canadian Immigration Consultant (RCIC)
canada@morson.ca  

Canada - Government Information

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Tim Morson

Expertise

I am a Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant (RCIC) and former Canadian diplomat and immigration program manager. I have 20 years of federal government experience in Asia, Europe, the United States, the Middle East, the Caribbean, Africa, and with the Department of Citizenship and Immigration, and the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade in Ottawa, Canada. I am currently the Senior Immigration Advisor for Pace Law Firm in Toronto, the Director of Immigration for the Cirque du Soleil, and the National Policy Director for the Canadian Association of Professional Immigration Consultants (CAPIC). I can answer all questions related to Canada's immigration requirements and procedures: (1) permanent residence in Canada for business people (investors, entrepreneurs, self-employed, professionals, skilled workers, provincial nominees, spouses and other family members, humanitarian reasons and refugees; (2) temporary residence -- tourist visas, study permits for international students, work permits, and temporary residence permits; (3) settling in Canada, Canadian residency requirements, Canadian citizenship and Canadian passports; (4) queries concerning Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC), the Immigration and Refugee Board (IRB), Immigration Québec, the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA), Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada (DFAIT), Human Resources and Skills Development Canada (HRSDC), etc. Please note that my responses are for information purposes only. To formally engage my professional services and obtain professional advice please contact me directly. Je suis couramment bilingue et en mesure de répondre à vos questions en français.

Experience

1982-2001 - Counsellor, Consul, Vice-Consul, immigration program manager, deputy director, special advisor and visa officer. I have had various assignments around the world: Asia, Europe, the United States, the Middle East, the Caribbean, Africa and Canada. Since 2001, I have done migration consulting work for individuals, corporations, institutions, and organizations such as the International Organization for Migration (IOM). I am accredited by the Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council (ICCRC). Je suis un ancien diplomate canadien et expert en matière d’immigration. Pendant vingt ans de service avec le gouvernement fédéral, j’ai occupé de nombreux postes diplomatiques et consulaires en Asie, en Europe, aux États-Unis, au Moyen-Orient, aux Antilles, en Afrique, ainsi qu’avec le Ministère de Citoyenneté et Immigration Canada (CIC), et le Ministère des Affaires étrangères et Commerce International du Canada (MAECI) à Ottawa. En tant qu’expert reconnu dans le secteur de l’immigration, j’ai effectué plusieurs travaux de conseil en migration pour l’Organisation Internationale pour les Migrations (OIM), pour des entreprises canadiennes et pour des particuliers. Je suis un consultant canadien agréé en immigration (CCAI) basé à Montréal, Canada. Je suis également membre du Conseil de la Réglementation des consultants en immigration du Canada (CRCIC, membre no R416007), directeur des politiques de l’Association Canadienne des Conseillers Professionnels en Immigration (ACCPI), et directeur d'immigration pour le Cirque du Soleil.

Organizations
Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council (regulatory body), Canadian Association of Professional Immigration Consultants.

Education/Credentials
M.A. Journalism (1992) UWO London, Ontario; B.A. Political Science (1982) Concordia University, Montreal, Quebec; RCIC -- Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant.

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