Pre-removal risk assessment – Refugee claims in Canada

We want to make sure that the people we remove from Canada don’t go back to a country where they would be in danger or at risk of persecution. If you’re being removed from Canada, you may be eligible for a pre-removal risk assessment (PRRA).


A Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) officer will let you know if you’re eligible to apply for a PRRA before we remove you from Canada.

In most cases, you must wait 12 months before you can apply for PRRA after you get a negative decision from:

  • the Immigration and Refugee Board (IRB) on a refugee claim
  • Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) on another PRRA application

This includes if your application was:

  • rejected
  • abandoned
  • withdrawn

If you’re eligible for a PRRA, the officer will explain how to apply.

Applicants who don’t have to wait 12 months

You may be eligible for a PRRA before 12 months have passed depending on the situation in your country. We keep a list of countries that are exempt.

Other ways you are ineligible

You can’t apply for a PRRA if you:

  • made a refugee claim that was ineligible because of the Safe Third Country Agreement
  • were found to be a Convention refugee in another country that you can go back to
  • are a protected person and you already have refugee protection in Canada
  • are subject to extradition

How to apply

If you’re eligible for a PRRA, a CBSA officer will give you an application form and the instruction guide before we remove you from Canada.

You must complete the form and submit your application in:

  • 15 days, if you get the forms in person
  • 22 days, if you get the form and the guide in the mail.

We won’t remove you from Canada until:

  • you tell us that you don’t plan to apply for a PRRA
  • you miss the application deadline
  • we refuse your PRRA application
  • you withdraw or abandon your PRRA application

With your application, include:

  • a letter to explain the risk you would face if you leave Canada and
  • documents or evidence to demonstrate that risk

When we review your application, we look at:

We don’t consider risk of persecution for some applications. For example, we don’t consider risk of persecution for an application from someone who is inadmissible for serious criminality. Instead, we only assess them on the danger of torture, cruel and unusual treatment or punishment and risk to life.

After you apply

You’re responsible for keeping your application up-to-date. If circumstances change that may affect your application, you must tell us. We need all the information you want considered for your application.

If we accept your application

In most cases, if we accept your PRRA application, you’ll become a protected person. Then you can apply for permanent residence.

In some cases, we’ll accept your PRRA application, but you won’t be eligible to become a protected person. For example, you won’t be eligible if you’re

  • inadmissible for serious criminality
  • at risk if you go back to your home country

In these cases, we’ll let you stay in Canada until your situation changes or it’s safe to send you to your home country.

If we reject your application

If we reject your PRRA application, you must leave Canada. Rejected applicants may apply to the Federal Court of Canada for a review of the PRRA officer’s decision.


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