Canadian Immigration Questions (FAQ)
Here are the answers to the most common Canadian Immigration Questions:
How do I become a Canadian citizen?
The most common method of obtaining Canadian citizenship is to be born on Canadian soil, however children born outside of Canada to a Canadian parent may also be able to claim citizenship. Otherwise, people must first become Canadian permanent residents, which is a type of status similar to Canadian citizenship but without certain rights, such as the right to vote, and with certain obligations, such as the obligation to live in Canada for two years within any five year period. After demonstrating three years of physical residence in Canada, a permanent resident can apply for Canadian citizenship.
How do I know if I qualify to immigrate to Canada?
There are three broad categories or routes to obtaining permanent residence: the economic class, the family class (which requires sponsorship by a Canadian or permanent resident relative), and the refugee category. There is also a discretionary route to permanent residence through humanitarian and compassionate applications. Contact us to find out whether you qualify in one of these categories.
What is Express Entry?
Canada selects economic immigrants by evaluating applicants based on characteristics such as age, education level, work experience and language fluency and assigning points based on each characteristic. Through the Express Entry system, every few weeks Canada selects applicants in the Express Entry pool based on a fluctuating point score. Selected applicants are then able to submit an application for permanent residence in the economic class.
Is it difficult to be sponsored for permanent residence by a family member?
Only certain family members can be sponsored for Canadian permanent residence: spouses, common law and conjugal partners, parents and grandparents, and dependent children. Siblings cannot be sponsored for permanent residence directly, but if they are under 22 years of age then can accompany sponsored parents.
How long are processing times for immigration applications?
Processing times of applications for permanent residence are different depending on the category, but generally speaking application processing times are quicker than they have been in previous years. Contact us to find out the latest immigration processing times.
What may cause my application to be refused?
Applications can be refused for a number of reasons. It may be that an applicant does not qualify in the immigration category in which they applied. Or, it may be that they have a criminal history or serious health issue. Contact us to find out if there are obstacles in your immigration application, and how to overcome them.
What if my application is refused?
There are different types of appeals and timelines for each application. If your application is refused, please contact our office to seek advice on the applicable timelines. Certain decisions may be challenged at the Federal Court or the Refugee Appeal Divisions. In certain circumstances, an applicant can ask to have their application reopened or reconsidered.
Why should I hire a lawyer for my immigration case?
There is no requirement that immigration applications be filed with the assistance of a lawyer. However, all immigration applications are highly technical. Also, requirements and procedures change constantly. Without experienced representation, there is a risk that an application is refused or significantly delayed. Battista Smith Migration Law Group has over 25 years’ experience and we keep abreast of the latest developments in Canadian immigration law through our involvement in professional immigration organizations, teaching, and litigating before immigration tribunals and the Federal Court. Hiring our team means doing it right the first time.
What makes Battista Smith Migration Law Group different from other firms?
Aside from our years of experience, we are experienced in niche practice areas within immigration law, such as LGBTQ immigration issues, medical and criminal inadmissibility, and appeals/judicial review applications. We provide professional, accurate, expert services that are client focused and responsive from the point of first contact.
I live far away from Toronto. Can you still represent me?
We represent clients in every part of the world. Most of our clients live far away from Canada. Electronic communication using methods such as Skype or email make communication and application processing as easy as if you were in our office.