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Canadian Permanent Residency Under Humanitarian and Compassionate Grounds

by | Sep 6, 2021

Ordinarily, non-Canadians who wish to become Canadian permanent residents have multiple options. Such options include immigrating under some of the economic programs, skilled workers programs, provincial programs among many others. There are also options that allow for Canadian nationals to sponsor certain immediate family members outside Canada to become Canadian permanent residents. 

However, there are instances where a non-Canadian may not meet the requirements for applying for permanent residency under the regular immigration programs. There may also be instances where a non-Canadian may be inadmissible to Canada due to a number of reasons. Some of the reasons that could potentially render a person inadmissible to Canada include their criminal history, a serious medical condition, or a previous issue with Canadian immigration. 

Humanitarian and Compassionate Grounds

Typically, foreign nationals or temporary residents who are inside Canada are not allowed to apply for permanent residency unless they meet the requirements of the immigration options available to persons in those categories. Nonetheless, when a non- Canadian is inside Canada and they are ineligible to apply for permanent residency under one of the regular streams or where they are inadmissible, the option of last resort that may be available to them is to submit an application for Canadian permanent residency under humanitarian and compassionate grounds. 

In other words, the Canadian humanitarian and compassionate permanent residency application option may be available to persons who wish to become Canadian permanent residents, but who do not otherwise meet the requirements of the regular immigration permanent residency options that the Canadian government has made available. The humanitarian and compassionate grounds exemption exists for ineligible non-Canadians who want to apply for permanent residency in Canada. It is a very specific application. 

Eligibility Requirements

It is important to note that not all foreign nationals in Canada qualify to apply for Canadian permanent residency under humanitarian and compassionate grounds. In order to successfully apply, you must be able to show that your situation in Canada fits into one of the designated humanitarian and compassionate factors. Persons who have had their refugee applications refused may not, under certain circumstances apply for a humanitarian and compassionate application. In addition, if you already have a humanitarian and compassionate application under consideration, you cannot submit another application. 

  1. Establishment In Canada

In situations where you are generally eligible to submit a humanitarian and compassionate application, there are certain factors that would be considered when determining whether or not you have a strong humanitarian and compassionate case. One of the crucial factors is showing that the applicant is established inside Canada. Established in Canada means that you have been in Canada long enough to have created some kind of ties to Canada. 

Some of the ways to show ties to Canada include employment, financial situation, a substantial amount of time spent in Canada, strong family ties in Canada, meaningful contribution to the Canadian society, community involvement among others. All of these factors will help show just how well-established a person is in Canada and that will be a crucial factor when determining the strength of a humanitarian and compassionate application.

If there is a situation where there is some factor that is causing an applicant difficulty in leaving Canada which ultimately led to their establishment, such factor needs to be taken into consideration. An example of such a circumstance is where a non-Canadian travels to Canada to assist an ill Canadian relative and they end up staying in Canada longer than they initially anticipated and eventually becoming established in Canada. Another example is where a child is born making it difficult for their parents to leave hence creating an establishment inside Canada. 

  1. Best Interests Of The Child

Another crucial element when evaluating and putting together humanitarian and compassionate applications is the principle of the best interest of the child. Under Canadian laws, the best interest of the child principle is a legal doctrine that is considered when children are involved. This doctrine also plays a part under Canadian immigration laws with respect to decisions that may affect the child of an applicant, including in the case of humanitarian and compassionate applications.

The best interest of the child will be factored particularly where there are Canadian-born children in the case but also in situations where the child might not have been Canadian-born. In this case, you would be required to explain how it would not be in the best interest of a non-Canadian-born child to be removed from Canada and returned to their home country. On the other hand, if the child has been in Canada for several years and has become established in Canada for instance through integration into the Canadian school system, to forcibly remove such a child from Canada along with their parent, would not normally be in the best interest of the child. 

Therefore, if there is a child or children involved in a humanitarian and compassionate application, it creates an opportunity to make a stranger argument for you to be allowed to apply for Canadian permanent residency on humanitarian and compassionate grounds, because since it would be in the best interest of your child that you be allowed to do so. 

Another factor that would be taken into consideration is the age of the child. If the child is relatively young and very dependent on the applicant, it would be an important factor as opposed to a situation where the child can take care of themselves. In addition, the gender of the child equally matters. If the applicant is a mother with a young female child, then that may be a crucial matter in an application of this type.

  1. Violence Concerns

If there are issues of family violence especially in your home country, such concerns would also be considered in the application. If there is a risk that being asked to return home could potentially expose you to all kinds of violence or harm to yourself and your child, that may be taken into consideration. The consequences of the family violence on any relatives you have in Canada especially if they are Canadian citizens or permanent residents will also be taken into consideration.

  1. Country Of Origin Factors

Factors in your country of origin are also considered in the application. If there will be an undue hardship in your country of origin should you return there, it will be factored in when an application for the humanitarian and compassionate ground is being submitted. In the case of a child, the conditions in the country of origin will also be considered with respect to their welfare. If the child were to be returned home and they have a serious medical condition, their best interests would be considered. 

Conclusion

There are numerous factors that will be taken into when a decision is being made on a humanitarian and compassionate application for permanent residency on humanitarian and compassionate grounds. These factors relate to situations where non-Canadians are inside Canada and are applying for a permanent residency under the humanitarian and compassionate ground from inside Canada. It is worth noting that there is also an option for foreign nationals outside Canada who wish to apply for Canadian permanent residency on humanitarian and compassionate grounds.

Let Us Help

If you are a non-Canadian inside Canada and are ineligible to apply for Canadian permanent residency under regular immigration programs or are ineligible in Canada but you wish to explore the Canadian permanent residency on humanitarian and compassionate grounds application, we are here to assist you to put together the necessary application and guide you throughout the process. 

We are also happy to provide the best professional advice in case you have any questions or inquiries regarding the application of the humanitarian and compassionate ground application.

Please feel free to contact us. Book a call with us today!

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