Permanent residence: COVID-19 program delivery

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.

These are COVID-19 program delivery instructions for applications from all permanent residents.

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Application intake

Intake of new permanent residence applications will continue. Files that are incomplete due to unavailable documents will be retained in the system and reviewed in 90 days.

New, complete permanent residence applications under section 10 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations (IRPR) will be processed as per normal procedures.

If a new application is missing supporting documentation (associated fees are required), the applicant should include an explanation with their application that they are affected by the service disruptions as a result of the novel coronavirus. The application may then be promoted and reviewed in 90 days. New applications should be promoted in the order they were received, and the org ID should be associated with them when the applicant self-identifies. If the application is still incomplete in 60 days, officers should request the missing documents with an additional 90-day deadline.

Applications found to be incomplete with no explanation provided, or for reasons unrelated to the disruption of services associated with impacts of the novel coronavirus, may be rejected as per section R10, and all fees associated with the application should be refunded to the applicant. The reason for rejection should be unrelated to the disruption of services.

Offices in the Centralized and Domestic Networks will continue to process permanent residence applications where the principal applicant is in Canada and has overseas dependants in China, Iran or South Korea, taking into account the delays that may occur. The principal applicant should not be granted permanent residence if their overseas dependants cannot travel. Clients will be contacted to ascertain next steps once travel is possible again.

Travel documents

China:

Permanent residents who may require a permanent resident travel document to return to Canada should contact the VAC Contact Centre for additional instructions. Applicants requesting urgent travel outside of China should be directed to contact IRCC Beijing in exceptional cases only (email). Permanent residents are being asked to submit their PRTD applications directly to the embassy by commercial courier.

Iran:

Permanent residents who may require a PRTD to return to Canada should contact IRCC via the web form. Clients outside Canada should select “Yes” in response to the question, “Is your application being processed by an office outside Canada?” and then select “Turkey – Ankara” as the visa office processing their application. Applicants requesting urgent travel outside of Iran should be directed to contact IRCC Ankara in exceptional cases only (email). Permanent residents are being asked to submit applications directly to the embassy by courier.

South Korea:

Permanent residents who may require a PRTD to return to Canada should contact IRCC via the web form. Clients outside Canada should select “Yes” in response to the question, “Is your application being processed by an office outside Canada?” and then select “Philippines – Manila” as the visa office processing their application. Applicants requesting urgent travel outside of South Korea should be directed to contact IRCC Manila in exceptional cases only (email). Permanent residents are being asked to submit applications directly to the embassy by courier.

Approved permanent residence applications (COPR and PRV)

Permanent residence applicants who are in possession of a confirmation of permanent residence (COPR) and permanent resident visa (PRV) and inform us, by submitting a web form to IRCC, that they are unable to travel within the validity of their documentation should be processed as follows:

Re-opened applications

Approved applications can be re-opened in GCMS by cancelling the COPR and PRV and removing the final decision.

When to review a re-opened application

Once the applicant informs IRCC via the web form that they are able to travel, a re-opened application may be re-approved provided that the applicant and their family members, whether accompanying or not, have valid immigration medical examinations, criminal and security checks and passports.

If the 60-day waiting period elapses and the applicant has not informed us that they are able to travel, a note should be placed in the application, and it should be brought forward for review for an additional 60 days.

Medical examinations

Currently, these instructions apply to applicants residing in China only.

All permanent residence applicants must have valid immigration medical examination (IME) results in order for officers to finalize an application. A complete list of panel physicians in China is available on the IRCC website. Should the IMEs be expired by the time the applicant and their family are ready to travel, new IMEs (or a reassessment of the IMEs, if possible) will be required prior to finalization. Do not request a new IME until the applicant indicates that they are ready to travel.

The Migration Health Branch will continuously identify all applications where the applicant is residing in China and their medical results will expire in the coming 4 to 8 weeks. Identified applications with an original M1 or M3 decision will be proactively reassessed for an additional 6 months. Should any applications that have not already been reassessed come to the attention of processing officers, officers are instructed to contact the Migration Health Branch with the following instructions:

Any applicants whose medical results have been reassessed but who do not travel to Canada within the new 6-month validity will require a new IME.

IRCC offices abroad and case processing centres within the Domestic Network should remain flexible in providing extensions for getting medical examinations where feasible and until further notice. These instructions will be updated as the situation evolves.

Permanent residence applications with current medical results that are valid for more than 6 months may be finalized, and the COPR may be issued, if possible.

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