In January 2018, I applied to sponsor Matt to become a Canadian Permanent Resident. It was a challenging process, filled with stress and many tears, but the outcome was definitely worthwhile.
Immigration is complex, time consuming and absolutely stressful. The Canadian immigration system is no different. There are many things I wish I knew and understood about the process, before applying. Here are some important factors that may help you through your Canadian immigration journey.
Every single timeline is different, every visa office is different & every single immigration officer goes at a different pace! There are lots of Canadian immigration forums and chats, which can be very helpful, but can also cause immense stress. When you start to see other cases being processed at a faster pace than you, it will start to make you question if everything is okay with your file. The key is to remain calm (I admit I struggled with that). Remember that your officer will contact you if they need any other information from you. An immigration officer will not reject you without requesting further proof or whatnot. So remember; don’t compare your timeline to others. There are reasons for everything and your time will come, whether it’s sooner than you think or a lot longer than expected.
Expect delays.. And expect them with almost everything! The biggest delay that came our way was when our CSQ (Certificat de Selection du Quebec) never showed up in our mailbox. It was the biggest bump on the road that we had to face. Because it took over a month to receive it, it caused tremendous delays with our entire application. Because of 1 minor delay, it can cause the entire application to standstill. Another tip, if you are sending anything from abroad but have a Canadian address, I would highly urge you to use the Canadian address! International mail can take weeks to receive, or worst can get lost in the mail!
Communication isn’t a strong factor when it comes to the Canadian immigration system, or any other for that matter. The first stage before receiving AOR1 is dead silence for over 1 month. We submitted our application on January 6th and received AOR on February 23rd. Yes, it took nearly 2 months to receive acknowledgment that they received our application. Also, don’t expect to receive any communication until after your deadline has passed. The only time we received any communication before the deadline, was when they finally sent him his PPR (passport request).
If you have a good valid reason, they will give you an extension. We had to request for an extension twice during the sponsorship process. Both times, the agent who was in charge of our case was very understanding. Of course I was nervous requesting those extensions because I did not want our application to get rejected. So just make sure you write a nice letter and give as many examples as possible; send photos or any kind of proof that can help your case.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Whether you know someone who has gone through the process, or check for answers online; don’t feel bad. There are many Canadian immigration tools online that can help you! If necessary, you always have the option to contact CIC directly. But that should be your very last option, as the agents are very busy throughout their workday. There are many kind people who can help you on Canadian Immigration forums, or Whatsapp groups. When we had a major delay with the CSQ, we reached out and got help from our local MP & MNA. Again, please keep in mind that this is for urgent requests or help.
Double Check EVERYTHING!
Last but definitely not least, check everything! Make sure your forms are in date, as this can cause a huge delay. Don’t forget to sign and date everything that is necessary. It’s best to just make sure everything is done correctly before submitting anything. You want to make sure you don’t cause any unnecessary delays.
Have you gone through any kind of immigration system? How was your process?
If you have any questions in regards to our Canadian Immigration process, please feel free to get in touch!