Study permits: Students destined to Quebec

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

Attestation de délivrance du Certificat d’acceptation du Québec (Attestation of issuance of a Quebec Acceptance Certificate) [R216(3)]

With few exemptions, all Quebec-bound study permit applicants must submit an attestation of issuance of a Quebec Acceptance Certificate (CAQ) from the Ministère de l’Immigration, de la Francisation et de l’Intégration (MIFI) when applying for a study permit.

The attestation of issuance of a CAQ may be issued for a maximum validity of 49 months in accordance with the length of the program of study.

Attestation of issuance of a Quebec Acceptance Certificate (CAQ)

As of March 15, 2023, the MIFI is no longer issuing the Quebec Acceptance Certificate (CAQ) in paper format to clients whose application for temporary selection studies has been accepted. The MIFI is now issuing an attestation of issuance of a CAQ (letter 715) to English-speaking students and an attestation of issuance of a CAQ (letter 315) to French-speaking students in their online file, replacing the confirmation letter.

Officers should continue to accept paper CAQ and confirmation letters 705, 733, 300 and 310 issued before March 15, 2023, as they remain valid until their expiry date.

The MIFI transmits lists of attestation of issuance of CAQ letters to the IRCC headquarters for redistribution to different points of service, including the Case Processing Centre in Edmonton (CPC-E), and visa offices. The CAQ list can be used for the purposes of verification, when necessary.

Visa officers or inland officers must enter the document number and expiry date located on the attestation of issuance of a CAQ letter in the appropriate field in the Global Case Management System (GCMS).

Who does not require a CAQ?

A foreign national who is authorized to study without a study permit does not require a CAQ to study in Quebec.

A foreign national destined to Quebec is exempt from the CAQ requirement in the following situations:

  • students who wish to enroll in a program or course lasting six months or less
  • recipients of Commonwealth scholarship or a full bursary (covering all expenses) from Global Affairs Canada, (the Canadian International Development Agency), including Francophonie scholarships
  • participants in a Canadian aid program for developing countries
  • the spouse and dependent children of diplomats, consular officers or international representatives or officials staying in Quebec
  • minor children (under 18 years of age)
    • of preschool age (age 4 to 5)
    • at the primary or secondary level, already located in Quebec accompanied by either parent who holds a work or study permit
      • This also applies to the renewal of their study permits.
    • at the primary or secondary level, already located in Quebec and are unaccompanied
      • This also applies to the renewal of their study permits.
  • a minor child seeking asylum or recognized as a refugee or a person in need of protection in Canada, or the child of an asylum seeker or recognized refugee or person needing protection in Canada
  • holders of a valid Certificat de sélection du Québec (Quebec Selection Certificate) and whose permanent residence application is processed in Canada, in particular persons who are recognized refugees, persons who belong to the class of spouse in Canada and persons authorized by IRCC to have their application processed in Canada for humanitarian considerations

Note: A minor child accompanied by a parent who holds a visitor record and is not authorized to work or study requires a CAQ and a study permit to study in Canada.

A minor child who does not have a study permit must have a valid visitor record for the entire duration of their stay in Canada.

Minors destined to the province of Quebec submitting an application from outside Canada

In Quebec, the age of majority is 18. Anyone who has not reached the age of majority upon arrival in Canada is considered a “minor child.”

Minors who intend to study in Quebec must obtain a CAQ and a study permit before entering Canada. This does not apply to preschoolers.

Minor children of a foreign national whose application for a work permit or a study permit is approved in writing do not have to provide a letter of acceptance.

Assessing available resources

Students destined to Quebec are required to submit supporting documents showing that they have sufficient funds to cover all costs related to their studies while in Canada. Examples include:

  • tuition fees and other education-related expenses
  • living expenses
  • travel costs (for example, round-trip ticket)
  • medical and hospitalization insurance
  • settlement expenses for the first year

If a third party is paying the student’s expenses, they (for example, parents) must submit a sworn statement respecting the assumption of the student’s expenses.

Semester deferral and CAQ requirements

Since November 11, 2022, MIFI no longer requires that students obtain a new CAQ when they postpone the start of their study program to the next semester, as scheduled in the school calendar. If students must postpone the start of their study program for more than one semester, they must, however, submit a new CAQ application.

If students change their level of study, they must also obtain a new CAQ.

These situations are applicable to students outside and inside Canada.

For further information, please refer to MIFI’s Note on Immigration Procedures (NPI 2022-06) (PDF, 110 KB) (available in French only).

The recommended length of a study permit

The duration of a study permit for students destined to Quebec should coincide with the duration of the attestation of issuance of the CAQ letter, which can be issued up to a 49-month maximum duration and according to the validity of their passports. If the study permit’s duration is shorter than the attestation of issuance of the CAQ letter, officers should provide reasons for this in the “Remarks” section of the permit.

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