August 31st, 2021 not only marks the unofficial end of summer, but also the expiry of two important immigration programs. On this date, the Canadian government will be closing both the permanent residence pathway for refugee claimant health-care workers, and the program that allows individuals to renew their status if they have lost it for over 90 days.
As the end of August approaches, we encourage you to check your eligibility for these programs and begin the application process. Continue reading for more information about each program.
Permanent Residence Pathway for Refugee Claimants Working in Health Care
The Canadian government is thanking refugee claimants who work in the health-care sector by granting them permanent resident status. This temporary public policy applies to both refugee claimants and refugees whose claims have been refused who have worked on the health-care frontlines during the COVID-19 pandemic. If you provided direct patient care in a hospital, public or private long-term care home or assisted living facility, or worked for an organization providing residential health care services to seniors and persons with disabilities in private homes, this pathway may apply to you. 
Do I qualify for this program?
To qualify, you must have:
- Filed a refugee claim before March 13, 2020;
- Been issued a work permit when you applied for refugee status;
- Worked or currently working in the health-care sector or institution that provides health services to patients;
- Worked for at least 120 hours between March 13, 2020 and August 14, 2020 in one of the below listed occupations;
- 6 months of experience in one of the below occupations by August 31, 2021 (and must be completed before you are granted PR status); and
- Be otherwise admissible to Canada.
Which National Occupational Classification (NOC) codes apply?
- 3011 – Nursing coordinators and supervisors
- 3012 – Registered nurses and registered psychiatric nurses
- 3233 – Licensed practical nurses
- 3413 – Nurse aides, orderlies and patient service associates
- 3124 – Allied primary health practitioners
- 4412 – Home support workers (excluding house keepers and related occupations)
If your spouse or common law partner passed away while working on the frontlines of the health care sector, you may still qualify for permanent resident status. As long as you currently live in Canada and arrived before August 14, 2020, this policy may extend to you, too.
If your application is approved, you and your family members would obtain Permanent Resident status. Applications received on or before August 31, 2021, or date of revocation, if applicable, will be processed under this public policy.
To view more eligibility requirements for this program, click here.
Renewing Your Status After Living 90 Days Without Status
If you have lost your temporary status, don’t panic. The government has created a program that allows you to renew your status so you can change from being without status in Canada to having legal status within the country. This program applies to individuals who entered Canada on a visitor, work, or study permit and have since lost that status for over 90 days.
While this policy only permits you to restore your status to what you held before it expired, it opens the door to apply for a different permit in the future, if you are eligible.
You can apply online to restore your status if you meet the following two criteria:
1. You had valid status on or after January 30, 2020, and your status expired on or
before May 31, 2021.
2. You are still in Canada.
This program also ends on August 31, 2021, so it is important that you assess your eligibility now.
You can read more about this public policy here.
How We Can Help:
With the expiry deadline of August 31st, 2021 closing in, you should start your application as soon as possible.
Our team represents people being sponsored to Canada by preparing their entire applications, including completing the necessary forms, collecting the required evidence to support the application, and filing it together with our submissions at the appropriate immigration office. We then remain the point of contact for the application throughout the processing period until status (whether permanent or temporary) is granted.
Please contact one of our lawyers at (416) 203-2899 ext. 30 or at firstname.lastname@example.org to book an initial consultation or if you have any questions about these policies.