A list of immigration services that won’t be available virtually will now be gradually resumed in-person by IRCC on September 21, 2020. New protocols and procedures are being tested out by IRCC to this purpose.
The services that will be offered next week include:
- Permanent Residence: PR-related services will be offered at IRCC offices in Quebec, Montreal, Ontario, and Etobicoke. Those who want to do their PR interview or pick up their PR card will get communication from IRCC via email to fix an appointment.
- Citizenship: Citizenship hearings and citizenship knowledge re-testing will be conducted at the Vancouver Expo. This will be done for a select number of applicants. The appointments will be scheduled via email by IRCC.
- Asylum: IRCC offices in Niagara Falls, Hamilton, Edmonton, and Calgary will have asylum-related services resumed in a limited way. IRCC will fix appointments with clients via epost (Canada Post’s online service). Clients may need to provide their biometric information, collect/submit documents, or attend an interview. In case the pilot works fine, asylum services will be provided even in Etobicoke, Montreal, and Vancouver (Hornby).
The client appointments will be made based on factors like file status and location in Canada. Without scheduled appointments, no client will be provided in-person services.
IRCC will also start making biometrics appointments. This means, PR applicants in Canada in the queue to give biometric information will get a call from Service Canada in the coming few months to book an appointment. People coming from regions where there are more people waiting to give biometric information may have to wait longer. An example is the Greater Toronto Area.
As only scheduled appointments will be served at Service Canada centers, applicants must update any of their changed contact details using the IRCC webform. This is also applicable where a representative applies on the candidate’s behalf.
The safety measures followed at IRCC offices include:
- The requirement for clients to complete a Health Canada self-assessment questionnaire prior to arriving at the center as per appointment
- The requirement for clients to again answer the same questions after arriving at the office, so done to make sure they are permissible in the premises
- The requirement for clients to maintain social distance, wear a mask, and follow signs that direct movement of people present in the premises
- Rescheduling the appointment if a client seems ill
Immigration Canada services have been shut down on March 18, 2020, by IRCC as part of preventive measures to stop the spread of COVID-19. All these months since, the immigration services have been offered in a virtual form.
Now that in-person services are going to start gradually, more services may be reopened in the near future.
If you are looking to Study, Work, Visit, Invest or Migrate to Canada, talk to Y-Axis, the World’s No.1 Immigration & Visa Company.
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IRCC – Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada
PR – Permanent Residence / Permanent Resident