Operational Bulletin 348 - December 1, 2011

This section contains policy, procedures and guidance used by IRCC staff. It is posted on the department’s website as a courtesy to stakeholders.

Elimination of Counterfoils for Approved Permanent Residence Applicants from Visa-Exempt Countries


Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) will no longer issue a counterfoil to applicants approved for permanent residence from visa-exempt countries. All approved applicants will continue to be issued a Confirmation of Permanent Residence (COPR) document.


Currently, all applicants approved for permanent residence, even from countries exempt from the Temporary Resident Visa requirement, are issued a counterfoil and seal in the passport that they are using for their initial travel to Canada to become a permanent resident.


As of December 1, 2011, missions will no longer issue a counterfoil to applicants approved for permanent residence, if the “CNTRY OF ISS. OF TRAVEL DOC:” field on the COPR identifies a regular passport issued by the United States of America or a country identified in the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations 190(1)(a) or (b) or 190(2)(b), (c), (d), (e) or (f), or 190(2.1).

An officer may use discretion in determining whether it is necessary to see the original passport or whether a photocopy of all passport pages is sufficient. A photocopy of only the bio-data page is not acceptable, as notations may have been made on other pages regarding the individual’s name, marital status or other pertinent information. This change in procedure does not remove the requirement that staff record the passport information of the approved applicant in the Global Case Management System (GCMS) or the Computer Assisted Immigration Processing System (CAIPS). Line 33 on the COPR will continue to reflect the date by which an approved permanent resident applicant must enter Canada.

The Canada Border Services Agency’s Border Services Officers (BSOs) and Liaison Officer network in Canada and abroad have been advised of this change. A communiqué has been produced for transportation companies. BSOs will continue to evaluate individuals at the Primary Inspection Line and determine which persons are immigrating to Canada and refer those new immigrants to Immigration secondary for finalization of permanent residence status. In cases where the new immigrant is not finalized at the port of entry as required, staff should advise the individual to contact the CIC Call Centre (1-888-242-2100) for options to correct their status in Canada. The Call Centre will continue to follow their current procedures when contacted by immigrants who require finalization of permanent residence status.

Procedures related to systems

GCMS users have the ability to indicate whether a counterfoil should be printed for approved permanent resident applicants. Please refer to GCMS online help to understand how to flag the need for a counterfoil and refer to the GCMS release notes of July 2011 (section 5.4) to set up a default.

CAIPS users will need to incorporate a workaround to their process in order to avoid printing a counterfoil. Offices should print the counterfoil on regular paper and then proceed to confirm the printing in CAIPS print, the same as they do today.

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