Limits on pre-removal risk assessments and applications for humanitarian and compassionate consideration

Limits on accessing a pre-removal risk assessment (PRRA) and on submitting an application for humanitarian and compassionate (H&C) consideration are in effect.

Pre-removal risk assessments (PRRA)

  • For most claimants, allowing only one PRRA in a 12 month period – in other words, no PRRA for one year following a final decision on a refugee claim from the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada or a final PRRA decision; and
  • For claimants from a designated country of origin, the bar on accessing a PRRA is extended to 36 months.

These changes will stop duplication and deter unfounded asylum claims from people who would use the system to delay removal.

Since a person’s risk of return will have been assessed by the Refugee Protection Division at the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (IRB), and with most failed claims, the Refugee Appeal Division, a further risk assessment is not necessary. All failed asylum claimants will still be able to ask the Federal Court to review a negative decision.

In the event of a sudden change in country conditions, the Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism may exempt certain nationals from the bar on accessing a PRRA. Regulations have been developed to specify criteria which must be considered when determining whether or not an exemption should be granted.

For more information, please see the Notice of Regulatory Changes to Applications for Permanent Resident Status and Changes on Accessing a Pre-Removal Risk Assessment.

Applications for humanitarian and compassionate (H&C) consideration

  • An H&C application cannot be submitted while a refugee claim is pending. Claimants have the option of withdrawing their refugee claim in order to apply for H&C, but this must be done prior to substantive evidence being heard at the hearing before the IRB.
  • Failed refugee claimants are barred from requesting H&C for one year following a final IRB decision. Final decisions include claims in which the IRB determines that a refugee claim has been abandoned or withdrawn. Exceptions to the bar will be made in cases where removal would subject an applicant to a risk to life caused by the inability of their country of nationality to provide adequate health or medical care, or where removal would have an adverse effect on the best interests of a child directly affected.
  • The bar on requests for H&C came into on June 28, 2012. Individuals who have received a final IRB decision must wait for 12 months following that decision before being able to request H&C.
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