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Have you recently applied to immigrate to Canada? In 2021, around half of all appeals and judicial reviews were dismissed by the review board. Speaking to a Canadian immigration lawyer provides the guidance you need for your immigration case.

It is not required to obtain a lawyer to represent your case to immigrate to Canada. However, every situation is unique and each application requires detailed information. A lawyer oversees the many complicated application papers required for immigration and appeals.

There are many reasons to obtain an immigration lawyer to help with your judicial review. Legal representation may benefit your immigration case. Read on to learn more about this process and hire an expert to guide you.

Immigration Law

Canadian immigration law is the rules and regulations to join Canadian society. These laws make it clear who can enter the country and become a Canadian PR and Canadian citizen. There are different branches of this administration, all with various responsibilities.

The Immigration and Refugee Board decides to approve or decline original applications. If they deny an immigration application, an individual may have the right to appeal.

Successful appeals are based on an error in immigration law. Your case requires sufficient grounds for approval. We recommend speaking to an expert to understand what counts as sufficient grounds.

How Canadian Judicial Review Works

Canada immigration law allows you to challenge the immigration board decision at the Federal Court of Canada. You must file within the deadlines for the Federal Court of Canada to assess your immigration verdict. These deadlines vary.

Every type of immigration claim requires different information. A lawyer will understand the deadline requirements for your case. According to the Federal Court of the Government of Canada, an immigration review requires two steps:

Step 1: The Leave Stage

Leave, within the circumstance of immigration law, means to obtain permission. An applicant must apply and obtain permission from a judge of Federal Court. Obtaining leave means the appeal case will continue to a hearing. 

If the judge decides to deny leave, the judicial review is automatically denied as well. This results in a closed file. To prevent a closed file, double-check your paperwork in your application for correct information.

The leave application includes (among others):

  • the date and information on the decision
  • the date that the applicant received their decision
  • tribunal number, name of the tribunal
  • applicant’s specific relief requests
  • section of laws and rules as the grounds to argue the case

An application for leave requires the applicant to deliver a certified copy to the respondents they list within it. A legal representative can arrange to take care of these complicated matters on your behalf.

Step 2: The Judicial Review Stage

If the judge grants a leave, a judicial review will occur. At the hearing, you may represent yourself. Or, your Canadian immigration lawyer will represent you.

The point of the oral hearing is to argue why the Immigration and Refugee Board’s original decision was wrong. This hearing must occur between 30 and 90 days after approval of leave. If you do not provide a legal representative, you must be present yourself to argue your case.

The Government of Canada may allow you to stay in the country while you await your judicial review. This depends on the removal order status that the Immigration and Refugee Board provided. If your removal order is “on hold” you are granted to stay within Canada while awaiting review.

Who is Eligible for Appeal and Judicial Reviews?

Both individuals and sponsoring family members may have the right to apply for immigration appeals and judicial reviews in Canada. Sponsoring family members appeal to the Immigration Appeal Division. This process is called a sponsorship appeal and requires a separate procedure than the steps listed above.

There are reasons the Canadian government denies immigration status that cannot be appealed. 

These include:

  • Serious Crime: If the applicant previously committed a serious crime with a sentence of six months or more of Canadian jail time. Or, if the applicant was convicted outside of Canada for a crime that would be punished with at least ten years of jail time in Canada.
  • Organized Crime: If the applicant shows a history of organized crime.
  • National Security: If the applicant shows a history of a threat against national security.
  • Misrepresentation: If there is evidence the applicant misrepresented their identity or other required obligations within their application.

Criminal Rehabilitation

Serious criminality includes DUI (driving under the influence). For this reason, many people are not eligible for Canadian immigration. There are steps are available to mitigate this.

Undertaking the legal process of Criminal Rehabilitation may grant you a solution.

Criminal Rehabilitation is a process through the Government of Canada to clear your criminal record. Eligibility begins after the certain period of time since the criminal act occurred. Because each criminal offence and punishment is different, we recommended getting legal advice when applying for Criminal Rehabilitation.

Evidence for Immigration Appeals

To successfully appeal your immigration status, you must provide evidence to argue your case. An immigration lawyer will ask you questions at your hearing to help explain your situation. You can also provide evidence before your hearing. There is a time deadline to file your evidence before the hearing.

 Witnesses are also allowed to testify on your behalf during your appeal hearing. Witnesses can also testify through the phone or internet connection.

Canada has two official languages, French and English. If your documents for your appeal are not in one of Canada’s official languages, you must get them translated. Documents to support an immigration appeal must be typed. Using a professional lawyer to help fulfill these requirements can prevent unnecessary delay or denial to your appeal.

Benefits of Hiring a Canadian Immigration Lawyer

The application process for immigrating to Canada requires detailed and complicated paperwork. This does not mean it is impossible! Although the process is daunting, Canada accepted over 400,000 new immigrants in 2021!

The Government of Canada is actively looking to add more immigrants to our population. Most people looking to move permanently to Canada are working professionals. Canada also welcomes people looking to better their economic situation.

Busy and hardworking people moving to a new country usually do not have the time it takes to properly handle their own immigration cases.

Perhaps you are wondering, do I need an immigration lawyer? By hiring a professional lawyer to assist from the beginning of your application, you may prevent the need for an appeal and judicial review. The amount of paperwork and levels of bureaucratic hoops to jump through are overwhelming for most applicants.

Here is how a Mississauga immigration lawyer provides you benefits for this process:

Provide Extensive Training and Experience

A skilled and professional lawyer in Canadian immigration law knows exactly what a successful appeal requires. They also understand why original applications get denied.

A lawyer will represent you at your oral hearing and present the facts of your case. They provide clear facts without the emotion that can arise from self-representation.

Make Legalese Clear

The language of legal documents is complicated. They include law jargon that the average applicant may not understand. A lawyer will translate this convoluted language into simple and clear information.

A professional lawyer will know exactly what the judge requires of you. They help you prepare your application for success to prevent a denial of your appeal and Judicial Review.

Know All the Pathways

There are many immigration pathways for people seeking Canadian PR and Citizenship. There are many options exist for skilled workers, business owners, and families. An immigration lawyer knows the pathway that best suits your individual needs.

Different pathways to immigration and citizenship will require specific plans to achieve it. There are likely options that suit your situation better than others. Speaking to a lawyer may prevent you from missing an opportunity that suits your needs best.

Save Money in the Long Run

There are costs to hiring a lawyer to guide your immigration application or appeal. But, by working with a lawyer, you avoid future costs. Lawyers ensure your paperwork and hearings are completed on time with all their requirements.

Immigration lawyers also guide you in these processes and take care of the time-consuming paperwork. This allows for more family time or time to work to continue earning and setting up your future Canadian life.

Provide Advice on Other Legal Matters

Successful immigration to Canada often involves other branches of law. Many people coming to Canada require help with family law or business law. Legal counsel will provide you with knowledge of the regulations.

There are different rules if you get entry into Canada based on an entrepreneur pathway or if you are purchasing an established business.

Have a Lawyer on Your Side

Hiring a good immigration lawyer could prevent your case from needing to go through appeals and judicial reviews. If you’ve already received a denial for Canadian immigration, a lawyer is essential for a speedy result for your oral hearing. The knowledgeable team at Minhas Lawyers will ensure your documents are complete and submitted on time.

The Minhas Lawyer team will defend your rights and provide advice for your new life in Canada. Don’t hesitate and contact us today to get started on your Canadian future.


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Minhas Lawyers Professional Corporation is a multi-practice law firm based in Mississauga. We advise and represent clients across various segments and practice areas.

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