Operational Bulletin 542 – August 20, 2013

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

Process for referring a refused application for permanent residence on H&C grounds from a SIO to a C&I Officer when there is possibly an unreported inadmissibility or when the person may hold no legal status in Canada and has no removal order


The purpose of this Operational Bulletin is to provide direction to the Backlog Reduction Office (BRO) network and their associated local Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) offices so that any refused Humanitarian and Compassionate (H&C) application at a BRO, when there is possibly an unreported inadmissibility or when the person may hold no legal status in Canada and has no removal order, are referred to a Citizenship and Immigration (C&I) Officer for further investigation.


At CIC, only C&I Officers are delegated under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA) to write A44 reports and issue removal orders. Senior Immigration Officer (SIOs) do not have this delegated authority. As such, a formal process is required for a BRO to alert a local office of a possible unreported inadmissibility or the absence of a removal order in H&C applications for which the SIOs rendered a negative decision.

Step-by-step guide for this case-type

When an H&C application is refused at stage one by an SIO and the client does not appear to have legal status and is not subject to a removal order, or may be subject to another unreported inadmissibility, the SIO will:

  • Finalize the refusal on all applicable systems and process the notification of the refusal in the current manner.
  • Create a Field Operations Support System (FOSS) Non-Computer Based (NCB) entry to acknowledge the refusal of the H&C and the forwarding of the file to the BRO’s sister CIC office (i.e., BRO-Niagara Falls to Niagara Falls CIC, BRO-Toronto to Etobicoke CIC, BRO-Montreal to Montreal CIC and BRO-Vancouver to Vancouver CIC) for a review of the inadmissibility.


New project code title: SIO Refusal to C&I for Removal Order. Note that this project code is not to be removed as CIC requires this statistical data on an ongoing basis. The SIO should describe why the referral to the CIC was made, detailing the suspected inadmissibility in the FOSS and the National Case Management System (NCMS) notes.

  • BROs hold most refused H&C applications for 30 days, in case there is a judicial review by the Federal Court of Canada of the negative decision. After 30 days, BROs should forward the complete files to their sister CIC local office. However, given the proximity of the BROs with their sister CIC offices, the Federal Court of Canada should have no trouble retrieving files from the CIC offices, to fulfill the requirements for its cases.
  • All desk investigations will be conducted by a C&I Officer who must make a determination as to whether the situation of the refused applicant requires further action. Further action could include an A44 report, a removal order by CIC, a referral to the Canada Border Services Agency or the conclusion of the desk investigation and closure of the file.
  • The C&I Officer must record their determination of the matter — what their decision is regarding the SIO’s referral — using the existing FOSS (NCB) and the existing NCMS notes and must record what the next step is, if any.
Report a problem or mistake on this page
Please select all that apply:

Thank you for your help!

You will not receive a reply. For enquiries, contact us.

Date modified: