How we assess your application
If you applied through the regular process, a Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) officer will verify that you have:
- filled out your application forms correctly and signed them,
- paid your processing fee, and
- included all documents.
If your application is not complete, we will send it back to you without processing it.
The Centralized Intake Office (CIO) will contact you when it gets your application. You will be told what you need to do and what will happen next.
If you applied through Express Entry
After you apply, Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) will verify that you have:
- filled out your online application for permanent residence correctly,
- paid your processing fee,
- met the language and education requirements (where applicable),
- included all documents.
We will contact you through your MyCIC account when we have reviewed your application. You can get updates on the status of your application through your MyCIC account. You will be told what you need to do and what will happen next.
If you are not truthful in your Express Entry profile or application for permanent residence:
- your application could be refused,
- you could be found inadmissible, and
- you could be barred for up to five years from applying for permanent resident status.
How long it takes to process applications will vary based on
- whether you applied through the regular application process or through Express Entry, or
- which visa office processes your application.
You can check application processing times if you applied on paper.
You may be able to avoid delays by:
- telling the visa office about any changes to your personal information, such as your address, telephone number or email, or the birth of a child, and
- not contacting the visa office more than once about the same issue.
Your application will be delayed if:
- there are criminal or security problems or we need to do more background checks,
- your family situation is not clear—reasons could include a divorce or an adoption that is not yet complete or child custody issues that have not been resolved, or
- a visa office has to contact other CIC offices in Canada or abroad to verify the data you gave.
You can check the status of your application online after the visa office has received it from CIO and started processing.
Express Entry applicants
We expect to process most complete applications for permanent residence received through the Express Entry system in six months or less.
You can check the status of your application online using your MyCIC account.
- Login to MyCIC.
- Once on the “Welcome to MyCIC” page, scroll to the bottom.
- Under “View my submitted applications or profiles,” there is a table.
- Under “Application type” it will say “Express Entry.” Choose the “Check status and messages” button.
The “Application Details” table shows the status of each stage.
You must have a medical exam before you come to Canada. Your family members must also have one, even if they are not coming with you.
We will not accept your application if your health:
- is a danger to Canada’s public health or safety, or
- would cause too much demand on health or social services in Canada.
If you applied through the regular application process, we will send you a letter to tell you how to get the medical exam after we send your application to the visa office.
If you have a criminal record, you may not be allowed to enter Canada. People who pose a risk to Canada’s security are also not allowed to come to Canada.
If you applied through Express Entry and were invited to apply:
You will need to get police certificates for you and each of your family members who are over 18. You must get one from each country or territory (except Canada) where you have lived for six or more months in a row since the age of 18.
In some countries, it can take a long time to get police certificates. If you did not start the process to get them before you were invited to apply, you should do this right away, so you can submit them before the 60 days are up.
If you applied through the regular application process:
To immigrate to Canada, you and any family members 18 years of age and older must provide police certificates to the visa office if asked to do so.
Decision on your application
The CIC officer will make a decision on your application based on:
- whether you meet the eligibility criteria for the program,
- whether you have the funds to support yourself and your family when you arrive in Canada,
- the results of your medical exam;
- the information on your police certificate; and
- any other information we have received.
Regular process applicants
The office that processes your application will contact you if you need to send more documents or go to an interview.
If your application is approved, we will ask you to send your passport to the visa office so we can issue your permanent resident visa.
Express Entry applicants
We will contact you through your MyCIC account if you need to send more documents or go to an interview.
If we approve your application, we will issue your confirmation of permanent residence and/or permanent resident visa. If you have not already paid your Right of Permanent Residence fees, you should do this now.
Confirmation of permanent residence
If we approve your application, we will issue you a Confirmation of Permanent Residence (COPR) and, if you are from a country that requires visas, a permanent resident visa.
Your COPR will have information about who you are as well as your photograph. Please check to make sure it is correct. It should be the same as the information on your passport. If there is a mistake on your COPR, contact your visa office or send a message through your MyCIC account (depending on how you applied).
You must have your COPR, and your visa (if you need one) with you when you arrive in Canada.
If you applied through the regular application process: How to contact the Centralized Intake Office.
Provincial nominees who have a request for case information may contact the Client Service Unit at the Centralized Intake Office (CIO). Note that if your application has already been sent to the visa office for processing, the CIO will not be able to help you.
You will not receive a reply to your email if:
- you have not already applied as a provincial nominee,
- you are not authorized to receive personal information,
- you applied within the last six weeks, or
- your enquiry concerns a topic other than your case.
Please do not send the same enquiry more than once. You can reach the CSU atCIO-Sydney-Search-Enquiry@cic.gc.ca.
Centralized Intake Office
49 Dorchester Street
Sydney, NS B1P 5Z2
Please write ”Provincial Nominee” on the outside of the envelope.
Prepare for life in Canada
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