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How long does the Department have to respond?

Access to Information

For requests made under the Access to Information Act, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has 30 days to respond to a formal request. However, this period may be extended for a reasonable period of time if:

  • the request is for a large number of records, or
  • the request requires a search through a large number of records and meeting the original time limit would unreasonably interfere with the operations of the government institution.

A time extension may also be granted if consultations are necessary to comply with the request that cannot be completed within the original time limit. If the required time extension is greater than 30 days, the head of the institution is required under subsection 9(2) of the Act to inform the Information Commissioner of the extension. We will tell you about the extension and its length, within 30 days of getting your request. It will also let you know that you have the right to complain to the Information Commissioner about the extension.

Privacy

In the case of formal requests made pursuant to the Privacy Act, we have 30 days to respond. However, this period may be extended for a maximum of 30 days if:

  • meeting the original time limit would unreasonably interfere with the operations of the government institution, or
  • consultations are necessary to comply with the request that cannot be completed within the original time limit.

The period may also be extended for a reasonable period of time if:

  • additional time is necessary for translation purposes, or
  • for the purposes of converting the personal information into an alternative format.

We will tell you about the extension and its length, within 30 days after the request is received. It will also let you know that you have the right to complain to the Privacy Commissioner about the extension.

Note: If you do not receive a response within 30 days, you may obtain the status of your request by contacting the ATIP Division via:

  • e-mail: ATIP-AIPRP@cic.gc.ca;
    or
  • mail:
    Access to Information and Privacy Division
    Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada
    Ottawa, Ontario
    K1A 1L1

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