IRCC Minister Transition Binder 2021: Overview - Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada

[Redacted] appears where sensitive information has been removed in accordance with the principles of the Access to Information Act and the Privacy Act.


The Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (the Board or IRB) is Canada’s largest independent administrative tribunal with four tribunals (“divisions”)

Established over 30 years ago with a mandate to resolve a range of refugee and immigration cases –fairly, efficiently and in accordance with the law

Refugee Protection Division

Immigration Division

Refugee Appeal Division

Immigration Appeal Division

Only the Refugee Protection Division and the Immigration Division (for admissibility hearings) make first-instance decisions; the other divisions review decisions made by the Government or by the IRB itself

The IRB’s Budget (2021-22) is approximately $300M with approximately 2,100 full-time equivalents (FTE) employees

The IRB’s four divisions have a funded complement of approximately 500 adjudicative decision-makers (“members”) in 2021-22:

Staffed by public servants

Staffed by Governor-in-Council appointees

Members appointed by the Governor-in-Council (GIC) are recommended by the Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship to Cabinet following a merit-based assessment process and named by the Governor General based on advice from Cabinet.

Those appointed generally hold office for a mandate of three to five years and are eligible for reappointment; reappointment recommendations are based on performance.

A full complement of GIC appointments is key to IRB performance, access to justice and keeping wait times in check.

The IRB currently has a number of member positions to fill at both the RAD and IAD. In addition, a significant number of members are at the end of their mandates. [Redacted]

Area Overview

The Board:


An overview of the organizational structure is provided (see Annex).

Recent Operational Context

Growth and Transformation Agenda: Growth

Budget RPD and RAD combined per Fiscal Year since 2017-18:

FTE RPD and RAD combined per Fiscal Year since 2017-18:

Solved cased by the RPD and RAD:

From 2018 to 2020:

From 2020 to 2021:

Despite recent gains across IRB divisions, as borders reopen, and unless additional funding is provided, backlog of claims is expected to increase once again. The IRB will work with IRCC and your office to address the IRB’s long-term funding needs.

Growth and Transformation Agenda: Transformation

Three strategic priorities:

1. Improved Productivity

2. Enhanced Quality

3. Strengthened Management

Outcomes: Improved access to justice and public confidence

Current State of Play – Challenges

Despite growth in capacity and productivity, progress achieved to date is at risk.

The Board faces a number of important challenges:


GIC appointments

Key Takeaways

Annex – Organizational Structure

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