In-person services for Canadian immigration processes will resume soon: IRCC

IRCC Immigration Update
  • September 27, 2020

Applicants will be allowed to book appoints for Canada’s immigration department’s in-person services. Also, the unavailable virtual immigration services have gradually resumed on September 21.

New protocols and procedures are under trial for in-person services offering due to the COVID-19 pandemic, said Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).

The services offered during these days include:

  • Citizenship: For limited applicants, Vancouver Expo will again be available to verify citizenship accomplishment re-testing & citizenship hearings. Such appointments will be scheduled by IRCC via email.
  • Permanent residence: In Etobicoke, Ontario, and Montreal, Quebec; IRCC offices will be opened for permanent residence-related services applicants. Applicants can pick up their permanent residence cards from the offices or coordinate for their permanent residence interview (permanent residence determination) if IRCC contacts them via email with an appointment schedule.
  • Asylum: In Calgary, Edmonton, Hamilton, and Niagara Falls only a few asylum-related services will resume at IRCC offices. Appointments will be scheduled by IRCC via epost, Canada Post’s online service, with clients who need to collect or submit documents, provide their biometric information, or come in for an interview. According to IRCC, if pilot program processes go well they will reopen offices for asylum services in Vancouver (Hornby), Montreal, and Etobicoke as well.

“IRCC will contact clients to book appointments based on their file status, location in Canada and other factors,” the immigration department’s media release says, “Client selection is largely based on the date of the client’s application.”

Such in-person services will be available for applicants who have received an appointment schedule from IRCC. With the coming days and regulation trials, IRCC will also start giving appointments for biometrics. Permanent residence applicants who are left with their biometrics will get a call in a few months for an appointment schedule from Service Canada.

Note: Region with a major population where more applicants are left with biometrics i.e. the Greater Toronto Area may have to wait longer for the call.

“We know that this is a challenging and frustrating time and we are grateful for your patience,” IRCC writes. “Service Canada will contact you as soon as they can.”

Permanent residence applicants who are waiting for biometrics have been warned not to visit a Service Canada Centre unless they have been called for an appointment. Applicants whose contact information has changed or if they had a representative apply on their behalf can update their details on the IRCC webform.


Safety measures at IRCC offices:

In support of IRCC staff and clients protection against coronavirus, below mentioned safety measures are being put in place,

  • Clients are asked to complete a Health Canada self-assessment questionnaire before coming in for an appointment.
  • These questions will be asked again when clients arrive at the office so that IRCC can determine if clients can enter the premises.
  • Everyone must wear a mask, maintain social distance, and follow signs directing the flow of foot traffic.
  • If clients appear ill, they will be asked to reschedule their appointment.
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