CITIZENSHIP AND IMMIGRATION MINISTER JOE VOLPE ANNOUNCES
TRIPLING OF THE NUMBER OF PARENTS AND GRANDPARENTS IMMIGRATING
TO CANADA IN 2005
OTTAWA, April 18, 2005 — The Honourable
Joe Volpe, Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, today
announced measures to speed up the processing of sponsorship
applications for parents and grandparents coming to Canada as
family class immigrants. With these new measures in place, it
is expected that in both 2005 and 2006, the number of parents
and grandparents immigrating to Canada will increase by an
additional 12,000 each year. This triples the original 6,000
forecasted for 2005.
Minister Volpe is also announcing that Citizenship and
Immigration Canada (CIC) will be more flexible in issuing
multiple-entry visitor visas to parents and grandparents. This
will allow them to visit their families in Canada while their
sponsorship applications are in process, as long as they are
able to prove that they are visiting temporarily. Regular
security and health screening will still apply and some
parents and grandparents may require health coverage to be
admissible to Canada.
“Today’s announcement will help CIC ease inventory
pressures in the short term while working with the provinces,
territories and communities on finding longer term solutions,”
said Minister Volpe. “I would like to thank stakeholders and
the members of the Standing Committee on Citizenship and
Immigration for their support of our efforts to improve
processing times for the reunification of family members.”
CIC has welcomed over one million permanent residents since
2000 and has consistently met its annual immigration targets
since that time. However, the number of sponsorship
applications for parents and grandparents is growing and more
applications are received each day than CIC can process. To
address this concern, the Government of Canada is investing
$36 million a year over two years to increase processing of
parent and grandparent applications and to cover integration
costs once they arrive in Canada.
“We are taking action now to address one of the most
pressing issues for CIC and to make our processing system as
efficient as possible. Reuniting families is a commitment of
the Government of Canada as well as a key priority of Canada’s
immigration program,” added the Minister.
Additional processing will begin immediately. In the coming
weeks, CIC will add temporary duty officers and support staff
at visa offices with the largest number of applications.
For more information (media only):
Director of Communications
Office of the Minister
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Processing Times for
Parents and Grandparents
Q1. How long will it take before my parents or
grandparents will be admitted to Canada if my application was
submitted before the April 18 announcement?
As a result of the Minister’s April 18, 2005, announcement,
the oldest applications received at all visa offices will
benefit from this initiative. Throughout 2006, visa offices
will be working to finalize the immigration applications
submitted to the visa office abroad prior to May 2004. While
it is difficult to project processing times for cases received
in May 2004 or later, it is unlikely these will be finalized
Sponsors who wish to know whether or not their parents’ or
grandparents’ application will likely be processed this year
should refer to the date of the Acknowledgment of Receipt for
the immigration application at the visa office, and
not the date of the sponsorship application sent to
the case processing centre in Mississauga.
Q2. How long will it take to have my parents or
grandparents admitted to Canada if I apply now?
It is not possible at this time to give an accurate
projection of how long it will take. There are currently
approximately 110,000 people in this category waiting to be
processed. With the new measures announced on April 18, 2005,
it is expected that in both 2005 and 2006, the number of
parents and grandparents immigrating to Canada will increase
by an additional 12,000. This triples the original 6,000
forecast for 2005. The incremental target levels will be
particularly assigned to missions with the oldest inventories
to bring their processing times more in line with the rest of
the world. The number of sponsorship applications for parents
and grandparents is growing and more applications are received
CIC is deploying temporary duty officers and hiring
additional administrative support staff to accelerate the
processing. However, it is important to remember that program
integrity cannot be compromised. Sponsors and applicants must
meet all the eligibility and admissibility requirements for a
visa to be issued.
Find information on the Department’s current processing
times at the case processing centre in Mississauga for
sponsorship applications for parents and grandparents.
Find information on the Department’s current processing
times at visa offices for
immigration applications submitted by parents and grandparents.
Q3. How can I apply for a temporary resident visa?
Is every parent and grandparent seeking to visit Canada
eligible for one?
Anyone is eligible to apply for a temporary resident visa.
However, the decision to issue a visa is taken by a visa
officer after an individual review of each application.
Applications are available on CIC’s Web site. The fee for a
single-entry visa is CAN $75. A single-entry visa allows an
applicant to enter Canada once. The person must leave Canada
at the end of the period authorized for their stay.
Q4. How will an officer decide if I qualify for a
temporary resident visa?
A visa officer must be satisfied that you will leave Canada
at the end of the period for which you will be permitted to
stay in Canada. Although each case is different, the kinds of
questions that officers may ask include whether you are able
to support yourself financially while in Canada, and whether
you are covered for possible medical expenses during the time
that you are authorized to stay in Canada.
Before issuing a temporary resident visa, officers are
required to ensure that you and any accompanying family
members are admissible to Canada, including on health and
security grounds. With these ideas in mind, officers are being
encouraged to give special consideration to the particular
circumstances of parents and grandparents.
Q5. What kind of supporting evidence should I
include with my application for a temporary resident visa?
At a minimum, you must provide evidence that you will be
able to support yourself and any accompanying family members
financially while visiting Canada. You may wish to provide
evidence that your family members in Canada are willing and
able to provide financial support if necessary.
You should also provide evidence that you and any
accompanying family members would be adequately covered for
any possible medical expenses for the duration of your visit
You will also have to demonstrate to the officer’s
satisfaction that you and any accompanying family members will
leave Canada at the end of your authorized period of stay. The
policy is aimed specifically at parents and grandparents
wishing to visit family members in Canada. Accompanying
children must continue to meet the normal rules.
Find information on the
application for a temporary resident visa.
Q6. What is a multiple-entry visa and how does is
The multiple-entry visa allows foreign nationals to visit
Canada one or more times over a set period of time without
having to request a new visa each time they travel. The fee
for a multiple-entry visa is CAN $150. The duration of a
multiple-entry visa is at the discretion of the visa officer
assessing the application. A multiple-entry visa can be issued
for up to five years or one month prior to the expiry date on
the passport or re-entry visa, whichever is earlier. If a
multiple-entry visa is approved, it will allow you to enter
and leave Canada repeatedly during the validity period of the
Q7. Does the five-year multiple-entry visa mean
that parents and grandparents can stay for up to five years at
No. The five-year multiple-entry visa gives foreign
nationals the ability to visit Canada one or more times over a
five-year period without having to request a new visa each
time they have to travel. On each entry into Canada, the port
of entry officer will normally give visitor status for six
months, or longer in some cases. Once in Canada, a foreign
national may request an extension of their visitor status
provided they can still demonstrate that they will leave
Canada at the end of the authorized period of entry.
Q8. I want to visit my family in Canada but I have
also applied for permanent residence in Canada. Will I be
eligible to come to Canada temporarily?
Yes. You may apply for a temporary resident visa (either
single- or multiple-entry) to visit Canada while your
application for permanent residence is being processed. At a
minimum, you will need to demonstrate that you will leave
Canada at the end of the period authorized for your stay. You
must also demonstrate that you have the means to support
yourself and any accompanying family members financially, and
that you and any accompanying family members are adequately
covered for any possible medical expenses for the duration of
your visit in Canada.
Before issuing a temporary resident visa, officers are
required to ensure that an applicant is admissible to Canada,
including on health and security grounds.
Q9. I am inadmissible to Canada but wish to visit
my family members there. Am I eligible for a temporary
resident visa (either single- or multiple-entry)?
No, you cannot be issued a temporary resident visa.
However, in exceptional cases, officers may, at their
discretion, consider that it is justified in the circumstances
of a particular case to reunite families sooner, through the
issuance of a temporary resident permit.
Q10. I came to Canada to visit my family but now
wish to stay permanently. Can I apply for permanent residence
from within Canada?
There is no class for parents and grandparents to apply for
permanent residence from within Canada.
As a visitor, you are required to leave Canada at the end
of the period authorized for your stay. If you fail to leave
Canada when required, you will become inadmissible and could
be removed from Canada.
If you are issued a departure or deportation order due to
your failure to leave Canada, you may also be rendered
inadmissible to return to Canada in the future.
Q11. Why did the Government of Canada decide to
increase the number of parents and grandparents who can become
permanent residents of Canada and be more flexible in the
issuance of temporary resident visas for them?
Citizenship and Immigration Canada is responding to
concerns raised by Canadians and permanent residents about how
long it takes to sponsor their parents and grandparents to
immigrate to Canada. There is currently a large inventory of
applications in this category. We hope that this measure will
facilitate the permanent or temporary reunification of parents
and grandparents with their family in Canada. These measures
are in place for two years and will be evaluated to determine
whether they are working as intended or whether adjustments