How Is Covid-19 Affecting Immigration
If you are planning on immigrating to Canada, we've talked about the things you need to know when immigrating to Canada in our previous post. However, with the Covid-19 pandemic going on, you may wonder if you can still apply for immigration or whether it gets affected. We understand how stressful it could be when immigration is already complicated and with everything's happening now. But don't worry, we're here to help! In this post, we have gathered the most updated things you may be wondering about immigrating to Canada now. Hopefully, you can learn more about this post that can help ease your stress.
If you haven't applied to immigrate to Canada yet
While the government of Canada is still accepting most permanent residents applications, they are unable to estimate the processing time as affected by Covid-19. They're mainly focusing on priority applications at the moment. So what is considered a priority? Canadians and permanent residents returning to the country, vulnerable groups, and work permits for people who perform or support essential services. If you decide to apply, you will still have to submit a complete application, including all the supporting documents required. If you have applied for a document but is delayed due to Covid-19, you can submit proof that shows you're trying to apply (i.e. receipt) and a letter that explains why you don't have the document and when you'll get it. Make sure you send the documents as soon as possible to avoid more delays. The Government of Canada is currently accepting electronic or email version of language test results or educational credential assessment report as well. If you are applying to immigrate through Express Entry, the deadline to submit your Express Entry application has been extended because of Covid-19. You now have 90 days to submit it after you’ve received your invitation to apply.
What kinds of permanent residence applications are still in process?
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Government of Canada can neither process applications normally nor provide accurate processing times. They are prioritizing applications of Canadians trying to return to Canada, vulnerable people, and essential workers. In the case of missing documents (i.e. police certificates, biometrics, passports, etc.) due to Covid-19, your application would not be closed or refused. The deadline to send the documents will be automatically extended by 90 days, even if the letter says you only have 30 or 90 days. The deadline will continue to be extended by another 90 days until you can get the documents. This is automatically done so there's no need to contact Immigration Canada. But again, make sure you send the documents as soon as you have them to avoid further delays.
Some language testing organizations have started scheduling tests again. You may be able to take a language test depending on the designated testing organization, the region where you want to take your test and the language you’re being tested for. If you're taking an English test, the Government of Canada accepts CELPIP: Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program and IELTS: International English Language Testing System. If you're taking a French test, TEF Canada: Test d’évaluation de français and TCF Canada: Test de connaissance du français will be accepted. Make sure you check the latest information about testing in your region.
Withdraw your application
If you wish to withdraw your application due to travel restrictions, you can fill out the web form. You will then receive a full refund as long as you withdraw your application within 24 hours of submitting it and the application process hasn't begun.
If your permanent resident application has been approved
Unfortunately, you won’t be allowed to enter Canada right now if you’re coming to validate your confirmation of permanent residence (COPR) and become a permanent resident, unless you are exempt from the travel restrictions. If you have a valid COPR, you are exempt from the current travel restrictions and can come to Canada. The COPR must be issued on or before March 18, 2020, or was issued after March 18, 2020 and you are an immediate family member sponsored by a Canadian citizen or permanent resident, though, keep in mind that grandparents are not considered immediate family members and cannot come to Canada at this time, or you’re currently living in the U.S. and will be coming to Canada directly (transiting through the U.S. to Canada doesn’t apply). You must also be coming to Canada to settle permanently. That means you cannot come to Canada and leave to go live in another country, even if it’s temporary. You must be able to quarantine for 14 days. If you’re travelling by air, you need to pass a health check conducted by the airline before boarding a flight. If you show symptoms of COVID-19, you won’t be allowed to board.
Prior to Arrival in Canada
As of November 21, 2020, you must use ArriveCAN before checking in at the airport or crossing the border to submit your travel and contact information, quarantine plan, and COVID-19 symptom self-assessment. You can either download the app or you can sign in to ArriveCan online. Don't forget to bring your ArriveCAN receipt (electronic or paper) with you to show the border services officer upon arrival. When you arrive in Canada, there will be staffs to assess your health before you leave the port of entry. You must have a plan to quarantine for 14 days when you arrive in Canada. A plan means a place to stay, how you’ll get to your destination, get your groceries, and access essential services and medical care. This is mandatory, even if you have no symptoms. If you are here to provide essential services, for example, truck drivers who regularly cross the border to maintain the flow of goods, you are exempt from the quarantine requirements.
Hopefully this post provided more information about the new immigration guidelines as affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. The above information was obtained from the Government of Canada website. If you are looking for extended stay accommodation to stay after arriving in Toronto, come stay with us at Avalon! All our premium suites at Avalon are fully furnished with a fully equipped kitchen and all the amenities you need. Our suites have 2x more space than your average hotel room and you get the entire place by yourself. We have 5 types of suites ranging from studios to 2 bedroom suites so just pick one that accommodates your needs. We even have a washer/dryer in all our suites. With all these features, staying in any of our suites will definitely make you feel at home. We offer a 5% discount for extended stay plus a 13% discount on the HST for booking over 28 days! To make a reservation, contact us at 416.731.1372 so we can give you a discount!