ARCHIVED - Notice – Canada’s mail service may be interrupted. Find out how this affects you

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IRCC has resumed using Canada Post mail services

Effective July 11, 2016, the special measures below are no longer in effect. We are monitoring the Canada Post situation and will provide new instructions as needed.

Updated as of July 6, 2016

Effective July 5, 2016, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has put special measures in place to minimize the impact on the processing of applications in the event of an interruption in Canada Post Corporation mail services. This affects the use of all mail services across Canada (first class mail, Xpresspost, Priority courier, Registered Mail) and Canada Post receiving agent locations.

IRCC will hold all non-urgent documents normally sent by mail until IRCC resumes using Canada Post services to avoid the risk of it not being processed by Canada Post in the event of a postal service disruption. Certain IRCC authorized cheques (such as refunds and resettlement support payments) will not be held and will be sent by courier or through other arrangements, as available.

If possible, you should apply online and upload electronic copies of documents instead of submitting paper applications.

When IRCC resumes using Canada Post services, we will process paper applications received during the special measures on a “first in, first out” basis. We will use the postage stamp data to set up this processing order.

All statutory and legislative requirements remain in effect. In most cases, deadlines will not be extended because of this interruption to mail services.

Our online application system and communication tools are available at all times before, during and after an interruption to mail services.

Passport and travel document applications

Canadians applying for a passport or travel document

For unknown travel plans

If you do not have plans to travel in the near future or your passport is valid for your planned travel, you should wait to submit your application until IRCC resumes using Canada Post services.

If your situation changes and you do decide to apply, follow the steps below depending on your travel needs.

For non-immediate travel (six weeks or more)

If you have travel planned after the next six weeks, you can apply for your passport in person. However, we will be prioritizing applications for immediate travel (less than six weeks). It will take up to 20 business days for processing of applications plus an additional ten days for shipping of issued passports to a collection location.

There are three options available to you:

  1. Submit your passport application in person at a passport office. We will let you know when your passport will be ready to be collected at the same location you submitted your application.

    Note: If you are applying at the Pointe-Claire (Quebec) office, the collection site will be determined with you at the time of application.

  2. Submit your application in person at a Service Canada Receiving Agent location. When you submit your application, the location where you will collect your passport will be determined with you. We will let you know when your passport will be ready to be collected.

  3. Send your completed application by courier to the address below. You will need all required supporting documentation including the Acknowledgement Form indicating the location where you would like to collect your passport. Call the Passport Call Centre 15 business days after the date it is received according to your tracking number to confirm when your passport will be ready for collection.

    Passport Canada
    22 de Varennes Street
    Gatineau, QC  J8T 8R1

    If all requirements are met, your application will be processed and the passport will be sent to the collection location you chose.

For immediate travel (less than six weeks)

If you plan to travel within the next six weeks, apply in person at one of the 34 passport offices across the country. You will need to provide proof of travel when you apply for urgent or express services. You will have four options to receive your passport:

  1. Urgent pickup (processed in 24 hours) for an additional fee of $110.
  2. Express pickup (processed in 2 to 9 business days) for an additional fee of $50.
  3. Regular pickup (processed in 10 business days) for an additional fee of $20.
  4. In-person collection 15 business days after you submitted your application, at the same location, for no additional fee.

If you apply at the Pointe-Claire (Quebec) office, the collection location will be determined with you at the time of application.

Service locations

Passport offices are operating as usual. Service Canada Receiving Agents will continue to accept passport applications in all 151 passport receiving agent sites.

Printed passports will be returned to either

  • the passport office or where you submitted your application; or
  • one of the 35 Service Canada Receiving Agent collection locations listed below.

When you submit your application, we will determine with you at which location you will collect your passport.

City Street address Province Postal code
Fort McMurray 8530 Manning Avenue, Main Floor, Suite 107 AB T9H 5G2
Grande Prairie 11601 - 101st Avenue, Suite 101 AB T8V 3X9
Medicine Hat 78 - 8th Street NW AB T1A 6P1
Cranbrook 1113 Baker Street BC V1C 1A7
Nelson 1125 Lakeside Drive, Main Floor BC V1L 5Z3
Powell River 7061 Duncan Street, Suite A BC V8A 1W1
Prince George 1363 - 4th Avenue BC V2L 3J6
Terrace 4630 Lazelle Avenue BC V8G 1S6
Brandon 1039 Princess Avenue MB R7A 7E2
Campbellton 157 Water Street NB E3N 3L3
Corner Brook 1 Regent Square NL A2H 4P1
Gander 1 Markham Place, Floor 1 NL A1V 1W7
Glace Bay 633 Main Street, Suite 101 NS B1A 6J3
Yarmouth 13 Willow Street, 2nd Floor NS B5A 1T8
Yellowknife 5101 - 50th Avenue NT X1A 3Z4
Espanola 721 Centre Street, Suite 2 ON P5E 1T3
Fort Frances 301 Scott Street ON P9A 1H1
Kenora 308-2nd Street South, Suite 201 ON P9N 3X9
New Liskeard 280 Armstrong Street North ON P0J 1P0
North Bay 107 Shirreff Avenue, Suite 102 ON P1B 7K8
Sault Ste. Marie 22 Bay Street ON P6A 5S2
Sudbury 19 Lisgar Street, Main Floor ON P3E 6L1
Timmins 120 Cedar Street South, Main Floor ON P4N 2G8
Charlottetown 191 University Avenue, Main Floor PE C1A 4L2
Summerside 294 Church Street PE C1N 0C1
Gaspé 98 de la Reine Street, 2nd Floor QC G4X 2V4
Baie-Comeau 625 Laflèche Boulevard W, Suite 204 QC G5C 1C5
Rimouski 287 Pierre-Saindon Street, Suite 102 QC G5L 9A7
Rouyn-Noranda 151 du Lac Avenue, Suite 300 QC J9X 6C3
Sept-Îles 701 Laure Boulevard, 3rd Floor QC G4R 1X8
Longueuil 1195 Du Tremblay Road, Suite 100 QC J4N 1R4
Repentigny 667 Notre-Dame Street, Suite 200 QC J6A 2W5
Sherbrooke 50, Place-de-la-Cité QC J1H 1R2
Val d’Or 400 Centrale Avenue QC J9P 1P3
Whitehorse 300 Main Street, Suite 125 YT Y1A 2B5

You submitted your passport application by mail or in person before the mail service interruption

Non-immediate or unknown travel

If you do not plan to travel in the near future, you should wait to check on your application until IRCC resumes using Canada Post mail services.

Immediate travel (six weeks or less)

If you plan to travel in the next six weeks, first contact the Passport Call Centre to check the current status of your application. If you submitted your application in person at a Passport office after June 24, 2016, your passport will be ready to be collected at the location determined when you applied, 20 business days after the date of submission.

If your application has not been received, you should then apply in person at the nearest passport office, allowing for sufficient time for normal processing. You will need

We will make every effort to process your request so that you receive your passport in time for your travel.

You are submitting your passport application by mail from the U.S. or abroad

As per usual process, Canadians abroad should continue to apply through the nearest Government of Canada Offices Abroad.

Applicants from the U.S. should be aware that unregistered first class mail will be affected in the event of a Canada Post service disruption.

Effective immediately, applicants from the U.S. should submit applications by certified courier. Canada Post will not be delivering United States Postal Service mail during a Canada Post service interruption. Passport delivery to clients in the U.S. will continue using Priority Worldwide Services (FedEx).

If you need a passport urgently or for exceptional circumstances (such as illness or death), contact the nearest Government of Canada passport-issuing office in the US that offers passport services.

Non-Canadians applying for a travel document

For unknown travel (twelve weeks or more)

If you do not plan to travel in the near future or your travel document is valid for your planned travel, you should wait to check on your application until IRCC resumes using Canada Post mail services.

If you do decide to apply, your application will be processed and if all requirements are met, the travel document will be mailed to the address you requested once IRCC resumes using Canada Post mail services.

For non-immediate travel (six to twelve weeks)

If you have travel planned sometime in the next six to twelve weeks and you need a new travel document, you have two options:

  1. Submit your application in person at the Certificate of Identity Section of the Passport Office. We will arrange a location to collect your travel document with you.

  2. Send your completed application, with supporting documents, by courier to

    Passport office (Certificate of Identity Section)
    Place du Centre, Commercial Level 2
    200 Promenade du Portage
    Gatineau, QC J8X 4B7
    Canada

    Your travel document will be  processed in 20 business days, with an additional 5 business days for shipping.  You will be able to collect your travel document from an IRCC office. We will contact you when your document is ready to be collected.

If travel becomes urgent after you have applied, contact the Passport Canada Call Centre to find out what to do.

For immediate travel (less than six weeks)

If you plan to travel within the next six weeks, apply in person at the Certificate of Identity Section of the Passport Office. You will need to provide proof of travel when you apply for urgent or express services. You will have four options to receive your Certificate of Identity or refugee travel document:

  1. Urgent pickup (processed in 24 hours) for an additional fee of $110.
  2. Express pickup (processed in 2 to 9 business days) for an additional fee of $50.
  3. Regular pickup (processed in 20 business days) for an additional fee of $20.
  4. Collection from an IRCC office  (available for collection in 25 business days) at no extra cost.

You have already submitted your travel document application

If you have submitted your application, however do not plan to travel in the near future, you should wait to check on your application until IRCC resumes using Canada Post mail services. If you are travelling, contact the Passport Canada Call Centre  to check on your travel document status.

If your application has not been received and you are travelling in the next six weeks, you should apply in person at the Certificate of Identity service location:

Passport office (Certificate of Identity Section)
Place du Centre, Commercial Level 2
200 Promenade du Portage
Gatineau, QC  J8X 4B7
Canada

You will need:

We will process your request and advise you when your travel document is ready for pick-up.

Citizenship and immigration applications: documentation

Until IRCC resumes using Canada Post mail services, we will contact you by phone or email if

  • we need additional documents to process your application; and
  • a delay would cause problems.

If we contact you for these documents, follow the instructions we provide. You may need to send the documents by email, by alternate courier or through our Web form. We will accept electronic copies of correspondence or documents where legally possible. We reserve the right to request original documentation at any point.

Applications or documents already mailed through Canada Post

Do not scan and email copies of any paper application or withdraw any application that you sent by courier or mail in order to resubmit them online.

New applications

If possible, you should submit your application online. If you send in your application by mail or courier, you should update your online account and register your application, if possible. This will link your paper application to your online account.

If you can’t use the online application service, courier services are the next best option to submit your application. We will not accept “cash on delivery” courier shipments.

We also recommend that you keep proof of the date you sent your application.

Citizenship applications

Citizenship

We will email or call you to schedule citizenship-related events. If you are unable to contact us to let us know you are not available for an event, we will reschedule you for another date or event.

Citizenship decision letters will be sent by an alternative courier.

Urgent requests for immigration or citizenship documentation

If you need your document before IRCC resumes using Canada Post mail services, include the following with your application:

  • a letter explaining why you need the document urgently; and
  • proof to support your request.

Examples of urgent requests:

  • you need the document to access benefits like a pension, a social insurance number or health care;
  • you need to travel in the near future because of a death or serious illness in your family and you need proof of your immigration or citizenship information to get a travel document:
    • you would also need to include proof of death or serious illness, such as a note from your family member’s doctor;
  • you can’t attend a Canadian school, college or university because you can’t prove that you are a permanent resident or Canadian citizen;
  • you will lose your job or a job opportunity because you don’t have your immigration or citizenship documentation:
    • you would also need to include an original letter from your employer;
  • you have received a decision on an appeal to the Federal Court for a previous application for citizenship.

Permanent residence (PR) cards

PR cards will be mailed when IRCC resumes using Canada Post mail services. Urgent PR cards may be sent by an alternate courier to you or to a local IRCC office for you to pick up.

Haiti and Zimbabwe applicants affected by the lifting of the temporary suspension of removals

Submit your application through an alternative courier or by fax or email to make sure you meet the August 4 deadline.

Immigration applications

Temporary resident status

If you are a temporary resident in Canada and you need to extend your status, you should apply online. You can also restore your status as a visitor, student or worker online within 90 days of the expiration of your status.

If you can’t use the online application, you should submit your application to extend or restore your status to IRCC using a courier.

If you applied to extend your status before it expired, you can continue to stay, work or study in Canada under the terms and conditions of your latest admission, until we make a decision about your application.

Status extensions will not automatically be approved because a Canada Post mail service interruption.

Family class sponsorships

We will email decision letters to the sponsor using the email address previously provided to us. If, for any reason, we can’t email the letter, it will be mailed when IRCC resumes using Canada Post mail services.

Work and study permits

We will provide you with a PDF version of the issued permit through your online account. If you do not have an account, you should register your application. Permits issued during the mail service interruption will be printed and mailed when mail services resume.

Employer compliance and inspections

You can request up to 15 more days if you need more time to provide your written submission after receiving an International Mobility Program (IMP) inspection letter. The standard response time is 30 days. You must

  • request the extension before the 30-day response time expires; and
  • show how a mail service interruption prevents you from responding within the 30 days provided.

You will receive your final notice of determination for employer inspections by courier.

Contact

Passport and travel document applications

Contact the Passport Program for more information or to check on the status of your passport application. Please be advised that a higher than normal volume at our call centre is anticipated.

Citizenship and immigration applications

Use our Web form at any time to make requests or ask questions. You can also contact the Call Centre Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. local time. The Call Centre is not open on statutory holidays.

The Case Processing Centres in Vegreville (Alberta), Mississauga (Ontario) and Sydney (Nova Scotia), as well as the Centralized Intake Office in Sydney, are not open to the public.

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