What To Do If Your Visa or Immigration Application is Delayed.

AuthorKupoluyi, Babajide

In the event of an undue processing delay, applicants can follow-up with the IRCC in several ways before requesting an Order of Mandamus from Federal Court.

People who want to study, work or immigrate to Canada must submit a complete and accurate application package to Immigration, Refugee and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). Sometimes though, even when the applicant has done this, the processing period can drag on for months or even years.

In the event of an undue processing delay, and as a last resort, one can request an Order of Mandamus from Federal Court to compel the IRCC to decide the case. Before doing so though, the applicant must exhaust all other options of following up with IRCC after the expected processing time has passed.

Follow-up Options

Applicants have a few options for following up on their application:

  1. For applications submitted after 2010, file an ATIP (Access to Information and Privacy) application requesting their GCMS (Global Case Management System) notes. If the application was submitted before 2010, the applicant can request their CAIPS (Computer Assisted Immigration Processing System) or FOSS (Field Operations Support System) notes, along with GCMS records. (GCMS replaced both CAIPS and FOSS around 2010.) Due to COVID-19, if the ATIP application was submitted by paper outside Canada, it can take six to twelve months to process it in some countries. The GCMS notes may give you an idea if anything is wrong. If the IRCC officer has noted concerns or doubts, take this opportunity to submit additional evidence addressing those doubts, especially if the immigration application is in its early stages of processing.

  2. File one or more webform inquiries or call the IRCC customer center to see if the IRCC can provide a substantive response.

  3. If inquiries to the IRCC do not work, try asking the local Member of Parliament to file a status update request. This is normally an unpaid service.

  4. If the applicant submitted their application by themselves and completed the above actions, ask a lawyer to submit a formal request letter via the IRCC webform.

    Applicants and their lawyers are not required by law to complete all the above actions. But if they have exhausted all attempts to get information from the IRCC, they have a better case for a mandamus application.

    In practice, many applicants regularly ask the IRCC for updates about the status of their application. But unfortunately, some applicants may be asking for information...

To continue reading

Request your trial

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT