Program delivery update: COVID-19 – Biometric exemption for permanent residence applicants with previous biometric enrolments on file

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

September 22, 2020

As a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, most biometrics collection service points were temporarily closed. There is uncertainty as to when the full complement of biometric collection services in Canada and overseas will reopen and operate at full capacity. In the meantime, there is a growing inventory of applications for permanent residence that cannot be finalized because applicants are unable to fulfill the biometrics requirement.

IRCC recognizes the impact this ongoing service disruption is having on applicants in and outside Canada. Therefore, until further notice, permanent residence applicants are exempt from the requirement to provide new biometrics in support of their application for permanent residence, as long as they’ve given their biometrics in support of an application within the last 10 years.

Updated instructions

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