Sponsorship Appeal Process

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  • If Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) has refused the application of a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident to sponsor the immigration of a close family member to Canada, the sponsor may appeal to the Immigration Appeal Divisiom (IAD) of the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (IRB).

    Note: A sponsor may not appeal if the family member is inadmissible to Canada because of:

    • a serious criminal offence punished in Canada by a term of imprisonment of two years or more
    • involvement in organized crime
    • security grounds
    • violations of human or international rights, or
    • misrepresentation (unless the person is the sponsor’s spouse, common-law partner or child)

    The sponsor has 30 days after the refusal to appeal to the IAD. Some sponsorship appeals go through an informal alternative dispute resolution (ADR) process. In most cases, a member (decision-maker) will hold a hearing of the appeal according to the IRB tribunal process. The appeal process involves two parties: the appellant and Minister’s counsel who represents CIC. The process also usually public, so media or members of the public may attend or report on the proceedings.

    If the appeal is allowed and the original decision is set aside, CIC will resume processing the sponsorship application. CIC is bound by the IRB’s decision. However, it is possible for CIC to refuse the application on other grounds, and this may also be appealed to the IAD.

    Either the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration or the sponsor may apply to the Federal Court of Canada for leave, or permission, for judicial review of the IRB’s decision. The Federal Court of Canada will either dismiss the application or return the case to the IAD for re-hearing.

    What is alternative dispute resolution?

    The IAD may suggest that the appeal be decided through alternative dispute resolution (ADR). ADR is only suggested for appropriate cases. This process means that the sponsor and the Minister’s counsel will sit down with a dispute resolution officer (DRO), assigned by the IAD, to discuss the case. The DRO will help clarify the issues in the case and encourage both sides to agree on a decision. If ADR is successful, there is no need for a hearing.
    ** Strictly taken from www.cic.gc.ca



    A Canadian Certified Immigration Consultant, Certified Senior Advisor and a Notary Public in the City of Burnaby, Editha Corrales Nelson’s preferred areas of practice are Powers of Attorney, Wills Preparation, International Legal Documents, Name Changes, Affidavits, Letters of Invitation, Statutory Declarations, Drafting of Business Contracts and other notarial services.  For an appointment, please call:  604-777-2757.


    The following should not be construed as providing legal advice and information in this column is intended only as a general guide and should not be applied to specific circumstances without further consultation.  For more information on the subject, contact Editha Corrales Nelson at 604-777-2757 or email:  corrales@shaw.ca.


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