Operational Bulletin 460 - July 27, 2012

This section contains policy, procedures and guidance used by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada staff. It is posted on the Department’s website as a courtesy to stakeholders.

Acceptance of Handling of Public Money Receipts at Local CIC Offices in Canada for Global Case Management Systems Applications

This Operational Bulletin has expired. Please refer to the Payment by HPM receipt page for current information.

Summary

Effective July 28, 2012 as part of the Global Case Management System (GCMS) release 3.3, local Citizenship and Immigration Canada’s (CIC) offices in Canada will be able to accept Handling of Public Money (HPM) payments, made online or at a Canadian financial institution, for applications processed in GCMS.

Issue

The purpose of this Operational Bulletin (OB) is to provide instructions regarding the introduction of HPM receipts as a new method of payment available to local CIC offices in Canada.

Background

The completion of the GCMS roll-out to all local CIC offices in Canada provides the opportunity to modernize payment processing for these offices by enabling them to accept HPM receipts and allocate fees for applications processed through GCMS. Clients can make HPM payments through CIC’s website by credit card (Visa, MasterCard, or American Express) or at a Canadian financial institution. Local CIC offices in Canada will receive HPM payments mainly for payments of the Right of Permanent Residence Fee (RPRF). Traditional methods of payment, which include cash, credit card, money order or certified cheque, may still be accepted by these offices.

Clients should be encouraged to use online credit card payments whenever possible. Online credit card payments have the following advantages:

  • Online credit card payments are automatically captured and deposited to CIC bank accounts. Unlike cash, or certified instruments there is no need to have a CIC employee deposit the money. There is also no need for data capture of this information in CIC’s financial system (SAP) as there is with cash, certified instruments or swiped credit card payments.
  • The delay associated with verifying credit card payment receipts in GCMS (up to 3 business days) is much shorter than the delay for payments made at Canadian financial institutions (up to 7 business days).
  • Clients paying with credit card choose from a list of set fees online, as opposed to paying any amount at a bank. This results in more accurate payments and less need for refunds.
  • Unlike payments at financial institutions, there is no need for the client to pre-order an HPM bank receipt. This saves time for both the client and CIC.

Instructions

HPM payments may only be accepted by local CIC offices in Canada for applications created in GCMS. HPM receipts cannot be accepted by CIC offices in Canada for applications that are processed in the Field Operations Support System (FOSS) as part of the older inventory, or for types of applications that cannot yet be created in GCMS, such as applications for permanent residence (PR) for Humanitarian and Compassionate considerations, or as a Temporary Resident Permit Holder.

Because of the delay needed to process HPM payments made online or at a Canadian financial institution, local CIC offices in Canada may continue to accept traditional methods of payment for urgent temporary residence applications.

HPM payment procedures

HPM payments are made through the following process:

  1. The client pays online through CIC’s website using their credit card. Alternatively, they may order an HPM bank receipt and pay at a Canadian financial institution.
  2. The money is deposited directly into CIC’s Receiver General bank account.
  3. After a delay of up to 3 business days for online payments, and up to 7 business days for payments made at Canadian banks, the receipt will be available to be selected in GCMS.
  4. At that point in time, a GCMS user will be able to allocate the HPM payment against the associated application in GCMS.

To process an HPM payment for an application in GCMS, complete the following steps:

  1. Record the payment for the HPM receipt under the client’s application
  2. Allocate the payment

Detailed instructions for each step are available in the GCMS online Help screen under IMMIGRATION SPECIFIC>Fees:

  1. To record an HPM payment under an application
  2. To allocate a payment to a fee record

If a client made their HPM payment, but did not allow sufficient time for the payment to be available in GCMS at the time of their interview, local CIC offices should either re-schedule the appointment, or offer the client the option to use a different method of payment. In the latter case, the client will have to send a refund request to HPM.Prod@cic.gc.ca and provide the following information:

  • HPM receipt number;
  • Payment date;
  • Reason for refund.

The refund request can also be sent by mail to:

HPM Production
Jean Edmonds Tower, North
300 Slater St., 5th Floor
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 1L1

Scanning capacity

To minimize data capture errors of HMP receipt numbers, local offices are encouraged to scan the HPM receipt barcode. It is the responsibility of local offices to build their respective scanning capacity. Most one dimensional barcode readers, such as the ones used for PR cards, are able to scan HPM receipts.

Refunds

Refunds for HPM payments accepted at local offices will be issued centrally by NHQ.Payments made online by credit card will be refunded to the same credit card, where possible. Payments made at Canadian financial institutions will be refunded by cheque. The following explains the refund process:

  1. The local office triggers the refund process in GCMS. Instructions on how to record refunds in GCMS are available to GCMS users in the section:
      IMMIGRATION SPECIFIC > Fees > To record a fee refund of the GCMS Online Help screen.
  2. The local office completes the standard refund form and signs section 20 of the refund form.
  3. The refund form and copy of the HPM receipt must be sent to:

    NPAS (HPM Prod)
    Jean Edmonds Tower, North
    300 Slater St., 3rd Floor
    Ottawa, Ontario
    K1A 1L1

  4. The Revenue Accounting team in NHQ will process the refund within three to four weeks and confirm to the local office that the refund was issued. It is the responsibility of the local offices to follow-up if there is no confirmation from the Revenue Accounting team beyond processing delays.

Only the office that reserves a receipt can allocate that receipt or initiate its refund. This means that if a receipt is cost recovered at a case processing centre (CPC), it must be allocated by that CPC before the file is transferred to the local office. Refunds that need to be done on a receipt that was reserved at a CPC rather than a local office will need to be sent back to the CPC for processing.

Pilot at CIC Vancouver

As part of a pilot project, the local CIC office in Vancouver has already been accepting HPM receipts for the payment of the RPRF. Effective immediately, RPRF payments by HPM receipts for applications processed in GCMS should be recorded and allocated through GCMS. For applications processed through FOSS as part of the inventory, RPRF payments by HPM receipts should continue to be processed with the current pilot procedures.

CPC-Vegreville and local CIC office letters requesting RPRF

For GCMS PR applications, letters issued by the Case Processing Centre (CPC) in Vegreville, informing applicants that their application for PR has been accepted, will be updated to include instructions to pay the RPRF online or via HPM, if the RPRF has not already been paid, and to bring the HPM receipt to their Confirmation of PR appointment at the local CIC office.

Local CIC offices are also required to update their letters inviting applicants to a Confirmation of PR appointment, if the permanent residence application was processed in GCMS. In situations where the RPRF has not already been paid, these letters should list all of the payment options accepted by local CIC office, including HPM payment. Applicants should be advised to take into account the processing time for an HPM payment (3 business days for online payments, and 7 business days for payments made at Canadian banks) to ensure their RPRF payment will have been received in time for their appointment. The following link to CIC’s webpage should also be provided to applicants to facilitate the payment of the RPRF fees: www.cic.gc.ca/english/information/fees/index.asp.

Letters issued to applicants should advise them to select the Vegreville, Alberta (Canada) processing centre in response to the question “Where will you be sending your application”, when making an online HPM payment. As of August 25, 2012, this information must not be included in the letters to applicants since the online E-payment pages will be updated on that date and will no longer include information related to where the application is processed.

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