Visa: This denotes an official counterfoil document that a visa office abroad issues and places in a person’s passport to show that the individual has met the prescribed requirements for admission to Canada as a temporary resident. A temporary resident could be a visitor, a student or a worker. The counterfoil refers to a specially designed sticker on which missions abroad print visa information. Canadian visas typically include:
Temporary Resident Visas (TRVs), which also go by the name of visitor visas and,
Permanent Resident Visas (PRVs)
At missions abroad, controlled documents typically comprise counterfoils and seals. Officers issue these together as visas. It is worth mentioning that counterfoils denote the documents on which missions print visa information. Similarly, seals refer to documents that the officers affix over counterfoils when they place them in the applicants’ passports for the prevention of any tampering.
Visa Application Centre (VAC): These centres typically provide administrative support services to applicants concerning the submission of their applications. The primary role of Visa Application Centres (VACs) lies in receiving visa applications, ensuring that they are complete and to securely transmit these to the respective visa offices for further processing. Visa Application Centres (VACs) are useful in countries or regions where there are few or no visa offices. It is worth highlighting that they play no role in the decision making process. As such, they are expressly forbidden to provide any visa related advice to applicants. All decisions on applications will usually be made by visa officers at the visa office. In addition, Visa Application Centres (VACs) do not represent the Government of Canada either.
Visa Office (or Mission or Canadian Visa Office): This refers to a Government of Canada office at a Canadian embassy, high commission or consulate outside Canada at which officers process the applications for visas and permits for foreign nationals, prior to issuing the visas. For more details, refer to the definitions of the terms ‘Embassy’, ‘High Commission’ and ‘Consulate’.
Visa Officer: This refers to a person designated by the Minister for assessing and making decisions on temporary or permanent residence applications presented by foreign nationals.
Visiting and Exchange Students: Visiting students refer to students at a foreign institution (home institution) who attend a post-secondary Canadian institution (host institution) for a specified period (not a full degree or program) with the intent of transferring the credits earned at the host institution back to their home institution. Such visiting students will typically pay fees to the host institution. Exchange students will attend a host institution in Canada. They will not pay any tuition fees to their host institution. This is because an exchange agreement between the home and host institutions will cover the fees for these students.
Visitor Visa (or Tourist Visa): This refers to an informal term that people use for a Temporary Resident Visa (TRV). For more details, refer to the definitions of the terms ‘Single Entry Visa’, ‘Temporary Resident Visa (TRV)’ and ‘Multiple Entry Visa’.
Vocational Training: This denotes a preparation for a specific occupation in industry, agriculture or trade. This training could typically include technical, organisational and basic skills training. It could typically be offered via:
Unions in conjunction with businesses
Community colleges or universities in conjunction with a specific industry and,
Private career colleges
Volunteer: This refers to people who, by their own free will, contribute time, energy, resources and / or talent to an organisation, without receiving any payment for this service.
War Crime: The examples of war crimes or crimes against humanity could include:
Execution type murders
The destruction of people’s property
Forcing people out of their homes and / or country
Genocide i.e. the killing of a group of people based on their ethnicity, race, religion and cultural backgrounds and,
Human rights violations
Widowed: This refers to a situation where a person’s spouse has died and where that person has not remarried or entered into a common-law relationship.
Work Permit: This refers to a document issued by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) that authorises a person to work legally in Canada. It typically sets out conditions for the worker such as:
The type of work that the workers can do
The employer that the workers can work for
The place where the workers can work and,
The duration for which the workers can work
Working Holiday Visa (Working Holiday Program): For more details, refer to the definition of the term ‘International Experience Canada’.
Years of Schooling: This denotes the number of years that a person has spent in school. Generally used for statistical purposes, this figure helps in determining the number of education points in the Federal Skilled Worker (FSW) selection grid.
Taxation Year: It is worth mentioning that taxation years are the same as calendar years i.e. January 01 to December 31. To be eligible for adult grants of citizenship, the applicants would need to have met their personal income tax filing obligations in four taxation years that are fully or partially within the six years immediately prior to the date of application. For instance, consider a situation where a person applies for an adult grant of citizenship on June 01, 2017. The taxation years that fall entirely or partially within the six years immediately prior to the date of application are 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012 and 2011. It is worth mentioning that these individuals would not be able to use 2017. This is because they would not yet have filed their taxes for 2017.
Temporary Foreign Worker (TFW) Program: This refers to the program that permits employers to hire foreign workers for filling short-term labour and skill shortages when no Canadians are available for doing the job. Employers would typically require a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) for hiring through this program. People refer to foreign workers hired as part of this program as temporary foreign workers (TFWs). These individuals could get work permits only after the Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) has concluded that no Canadians are available for doing the same job. For more details, refer to the definition of the term ‘Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA)’.
Temporary Resident (or Visitor or Tourist): This refers to a foreign national who is in Canada legally for a short span of time. Temporary residents would typically include students, foreign workers and visitors such as tourists. For more details, refer to the definition of the term ‘Temporary Resident Visa (TRV)’.
Temporary Resident Documents: These denote documents issued to permit people to visit, work in or study in Canada for a specific duration. Temporary resident documents will typically feature expiry dates. Examples of temporary resident documents could include study permits, work permits and visitor records.
Temporary Resident Permit (TRP): This refers to a permit that the authorities could grant in exceptional circumstances to people who do not meet the requirements of Canada’s immigration law for entering or remaining temporarily in Canada.
Temporary Resident Visa (TRV) (or Tourist Visa): This denotes an official counterfoil document that a visa office abroad issues and places in a person’s passport to show that the individual has met the prescribed requirements for admission to Canada as a temporary resident. A temporary resident could be a visitor, a student or a worker. The counterfoil refers to a specially designed sticker on which missions abroad print visa information. People also refer to this informally as a visitor or a tourist visa. It is worth mentioning that the authorities could issue the Temporary Resident Visa (TRV) for single or multiple entries to Canada. For more details, refer to the definitions of the terms ‘Single Entry Visa’, ‘Visitor Visa’ and ‘Multiple Entry Visa’.
Transit Visa: This refers to a temporary resident visa issued to people travelling through Canada to another country. The authorities usually charge no fee if the traveller will be in Canada for less than 48 hours. For obtaining this visa, the travellers would need to provide proof of their travel plans from their transportation companies or travel agents.
Travel Document: This denotes an identity document issued by a government or an international organisation (such as the United Nations (UN)). It would typically contain the person’s photograph and other personal information. In addition, it would enable the person to travel between countries. For more details, refer to the definition of the term ‘Passport’.
Tuition: This denotes the cost or fee for instruction at a private institution such as a school, a college or a university.
US Passport Card: This refers to a wallet sized travel document that US citizens typically use for entering the US from Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean or Bermuda at land border crossings or sea ports of entry.
Unemployed: This refers to a situation where a person does not have a job at this point in time but the person is actively seeking one.
University: This denotes a stage of higher education that usually comes after high school. Universities typically issue three types of degrees namely bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate. People would need to typically complete high school in order to qualify for attending a university. It is worth highlighting that in Canada, a college does not refer to a university. In Quebec, students would typically need to attend Collège d’enseignement général et professionnel (CEGEPs) between high school and university.
Unauthorised Representative (or Authorised Representative): This refers to individuals who charge a fee or receive some form of compensation (whether direct or not) and who are not members in good standing of an accredited regulatory body.
Urgent Protection Program (UPP): This refers to a program that permits Canada to respond to urgent requests from the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) to resettle refugees who face immediate threats to their lives, liberty or physical safety.
Valid: This refers to a document that is legal, has not expired and is accepted by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC).
Verification of Status Document: This denotes a document that includes a person’s immigration information. Such information could specify the date and place from where the person came to Canada. People can use this document for proving their immigration status. However, they cannot use this document for travelling. This is because this document is not an identity document.
Service Provider Organisation (SPO) (or Immigrant Settlement Agency or Immigrant Service Provider or Settlement Agency or Immigrant Serving Agency or Immigrant Serving Organisation or Settlement Assistance Organisation or Immigrant Settlement Association): This denotes an agency that provides services for newcomers to Canada. Service Provider Organisations (SPOs) typically offer programs that can give newcomers resources and training for living and working in Canada. As such, their programs could help refugees who often have a tough time with various day-to-day tasks such as finding an apartment, taking public transportation or making a doctor’s appointment. These organisations can help refugees complete forms, obtain permanent resident cards (PRCs), health insurance, social insurance numbers etc. as well. In addition, these agencies could offer interpretation and translation services as well for helping with such special needs as giving medical backgrounds to doctors. Readers would need to visit the website of Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) for obtaining more information on the numerous services provided by Service Provider Organisations (SPOs).
Settlement Funds: This term could denote one of two things namely:
Sufficient and available funds that economic immigrants would need to prove that they have for settling in Canada. These economic immigrants would need to use these funds for covering fees, relocation costs and the costs to settle. In this scenario, the funds would need to be:
Not committed to debts or other obligations
Funds allocated by the Government of Canada for paying for measures to develop welcoming and inclusive communities or to help newcomers settle into their new communities
Single Entry Visa (or Tourist Visa or Visitor Visa): This refers to a visa that permits someone to enter Canada only once. For more details, refer to the definition of the term ‘Temporary Resident Visa (TRV)’.
Skill Level: To be eligible for the Federal Skilled Worker (FSW) Class and the Canadian Experience Class (CEC), foreign workers would need to possess work experience at specified skill levels. The skill levels for occupations typically come from the National Occupational Classification (NOC) system. As such, these skill levels remain classified by type of work the training required to achieve proficiency.
Skilled Worker: For more details, refer to the definition of the term ‘Federal Skilled Worker (FSW)’.
Sponsor: This denotes a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident who is 18 years of age or older and who is legally supporting a member of the Family Class for becoming a permanent resident of Canada.
Sponsored Person: This denotes a foreign national who has applied for permanent residence under the Family Class. This person would need to have an approved Canadian sponsor and will also need to meet the requirements of the Family Class.
Sponsorship Agreement: This refers to a signed contract between a sponsored immigrant and the sponsored immigrant’s sponsor. The agreement would typically outline the obligations and commitments of both the parties. The framing of this agreement is imperative prior to the immigration of the sponsored person to Canada.
Sponsorship Agreement Holder (SAH): This refers to an incorporated organisation that signs an agreement with Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) for sponsoring refugees abroad. A Sponsorship Agreement Holder (SAH) would have the authority for authorising other groups in the community for sponsoring refugees under its agreement. People refer to these groups as constituent groups.
Sponsorship Requirements: This refers to the requirements that a person would need to meet for sponsoring a family member to come to Canada as a permanent resident.
Spouse: This refers to a legal marriage partner. This term typically includes both same sex and opposite sex relationships. However, it does not include common-law partnerships.
Start-Up Visa: This denotes a Permanent Residence Visa (PRV) given to a person or to a group of persons who applied under the Start-Up Business Class. These people would have received a commitment from a designated angel investor group or venture capital fund. In addition, they would be having the intent to operate a new business in Canada.
Study Permit: This refers to a document issued by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) that typically authorises a foreign national to study at an education institution in Canada for the duration of the program of study. This document will also set out conditions for the student such as:
Whether the student’s travel within Canada is restricted and,
When the students would need to leave
Support Services: These refer to services that help newcomers to fully participate in Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) funded settlement programs. Support services could typically comprise:
Onsite child care
Translation and interpretation services
Support for disabilities and,
Short-term crisis counselling
Surname: A person’s surname generally refers to the person’s family name. When people fill out applications, they would need to type their surnames as it appears on their passport, travel or identity document or any letters that they received from the visa office or the Case Processing Centre (CPC) where they sent their applications. This is applicable even if the name has been misspelled. These individuals would need to avoid using initials. Some people might not have a surname specified on their passport, travel or identity document. These individuals would need to enter all their given names in the surname field. Thereafter, they would need to leave the given name field as blank.
Removal Order: This refers to the situation when an immigration official orders a person to leave Canada. There are three kinds of removal orders such as departure, exclusion and deportation. Each one of these orders has different repercussions.
Renunciation of Citizenship (or Renunciation Document): This refers to the process by which a citizen willingly gives up Canadian citizenship willingly. Once a citizenship judge approves the application for renunciation, the authorities issue a renunciation certificate. For more details, refer to the definition of the term ‘Resumption of Citizenship’.
Representative: This refers to a person who has the permission of another person wanting to immigrate to Canada or to obtain Canadian citizenship for conducting business with Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) on their behalf. This representative could be paid or unpaid. When a person appoints a representative, they could also authorise Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) to share information from their case file with this person. It is worth mentioning that Canada’s citizenship and immigration laws cover representatives. They define the terms of the services offered by these representatives as well. For more details, refer to the definitions of the terms ‘Authorised Representative’ and ‘Citizenship and Immigration Consultant’.
Residence Requirement (Citizenship): This refers to the amount of time a permanent resident would need to live in Canada for being eligible for a grant of Canadian citizenship. This applies to applicants who have applied prior to June 11, 2015. The authorities require adults to have lived in Canada for at least three years (1,095 days) in the four years immediately prior to the date of the application. However, this requirement does not apply to children below the age of 18 years.
Resident Requirement (Permanent Resident): This denotes the amount of time that a permanent resident would need to live in Canada for keeping their status as a permanent resident. In most circumstances, the authorities require permanent residents to live in Canada for at least two years (730 days) out of give. There could be occasions when these individuals could count time outside of Canada for meeting this requirement.
Resumption of Citizenship: This refers to the process by which a former citizen can resume Canadian citizenship back after one year of residence in Canada as a permanent resident preceding immediately the date of the application. However, these individuals would need to become permanent residents first. For more details, refer to the definition of the term ‘Renunciation of Citizenship’.
Retired: This denotes that the person has willingly stopped working. In most cases, this would be because of the age of the individual.
Revocation of Citizenship (or Loss of Citizenship or Cease to be a Citizen): A decision from the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration or a declaration from the Federal Court could lead the revocation of a person’s citizenship. The reasons for such a revocation could typically include:
- False representation
- Knowingly concealing any material circumstances or,
- Committing an offence against Canada’s national interests
The authorities could also revoke the citizenship of a person if the person, who is a dual citizen, before or after the coming into force of subsections 10 (2) and 10.1 (2) and while also being a Canadian citizen was:
- Convicted of terrorism, high treason, treason or spying offences depending on the sentence received or,
- Served as a member of an armed force of a country or an organised armed group that engaged in armed conflict with Canada
Right of Permanent Residence Fee (RPRF): This refers to a charge paid by the principal applicant (barring some exceptions) and a spouse or common-law partner travelling with the principal applicant, before the applicant can become a permanent resident of Canada.
Safe Third Country: This denotes a country other than Canada and the country of alleged persecution, where an individual could make a claim for refugee protection. In Canada, the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA) outline the criteria for designating a country as a safe third country.
Satisfactory Academic Standing: This denotes the applicant getting a certain mark or grade point average (GPA) in a program of study or completing certain program requirements. It is worth mentioning that different programs of study will typically have different standards of what the authorities deem as being satisfactory. Therefore, the students would need to ascertain what counts as satisfactory with their educational institutions.
Secondary School (or High School or Middle School): This refers to an institution that provides an education to students who have completed elementary school. These schools will usually include grades nine through 12. In some areas, these schools might even start with grade seven. In the province of Quebec, people refer to secondary grades as grades one through five. It is worth mentioning that applicants for primary and secondary schools do not need to specify a Designated Learning Institution (DLI) number on their application forms.
Sector Council: This refers to an organisation that brings together various representatives from business, labour, education and several professional groups within an industry or a profession.
Self-Employed Person: This denotes an immigrant admitted to Canada for their relevant experience in working for themselves. It is worth mentioning that the person must intend and be able to become self-employed in Canada in the arts, athletics or farm management.
Self-Supporting Refugee: This denotes an applicant accepted as a Convention refugee abroad or as a member of the Country of Asylum Class, who has sufficient financial resources for supporting themselves in Canada.
Separated: This condition denotes that two people are married but are no longer living together. More importantly, these two individuals also do not wish to live together again. As such, they might well be waiting for a divorce. Alternatively, they might have not yet decided to proceed with a divorce either.
Serious Criminality: This refers to a category of criminal inadmissibility that applies to people who have committed or been convicted of offences, inside or outside Canada, which is punishable by a sentence of at least 10 years in Canada. It also refers to people who have been convicted of offences in Canada for which the person has received a sentence of more than six months. People also refer to this as indictable offences in Canada.
Qualifying Business: The authorities consider a qualifying business as one in which the percentage of the business controlled by the applicant meets at least two of the following thresholds in one year:
The full-time job equivalents are equal to or greater than two
The total annual sales are equal to or greater than $500,000 Canadian dollars
The net income in the year is equal to or greater than $50,000 Canadian dollars and,
The net assets at the end of the year is equal to or greater than $125,000 Canadian dollars
This definition enables officers to determine whether an entrepreneur or investor applicant has managed to meet the prescribed business experience requirements.
Reaffirmation Ceremony: This refers to a formal event where Canadian citizens express their commitment to Canada by repeating the oath of citizenship.
Recall of Citizenship Certificate: This refers to the process by which the authorities might require a person to surrender the Citizenship Certificate. The surrender of the certificate would be required in case the authorities find that they have reason to believe that the person might not be entitled to the certificate. Alternatively, the authorities might require the person to surrender the certificate if they find that the person has violated any of the provisions of the Act.
Record of Landing (IMM 1000): This denotes an official document once the authorities issue it to a person on arrival in Canada as a permanent resident. It is worth mentioning that Canada has stopped issuing records of landing on June 28, 2002. For more details, refer to the definitions of the terms ‘Confirmation of Permanent Residence (CoPR)’ and ‘Permanent Resident Card (PRC)’.
Record Suspension: A record suspension (formerly referred to as a pardon) enables people who were convicted of criminal offences to have their criminal records kept separate and apart from other criminal records. This usually takes place in the case the individuals have completed their sentences and demonstrated that they are law-abiding citizens for a prescribed number of years. For more details, refer to the definitions of the terms ‘Criminal Inadmissibility’, ‘Criminal Rehabilitation’ and ‘Deemed Rehabilitation’.
Refugee and Humanitarian Resettlement Program: This refers to the Government of Canada’s program under which the authorities select refugees from abroad and admit them into Canada. This applies only to those refugees who meet Canada’s refugee resettlement criteria.
Refugee Claimant: This denotes a person who has applied for refugee protection status while in Canada. In addition, this person might be waiting for the authorities from the Immigration and Refugee Board (IRB) of Canada to take a decision on the claim. For more details, refer to the definition of the term ‘Protected Person’.
Refugee Dependent: This denotes a family member of a refugee in Canada, whose application for permanent residence is processed by the officers at the same time as that of the principal applicant’s.
Refugee Landed in Canada: This denotes a permanent resident who applied for and received permanent resident status in Canada after the authorities accepted their refugee claim.
Refugee Protection Status: When the authorities determine a person (whether inland or overseas) to be a Convention refugee or a protected person, they confer refugee protection status on that person in Canada. The authorities usually provide refugee protection to a person in accordance with the provisions specified in the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA).
Refugee Travel Document: This refers to a document for people in Canada who have a protected person status, which they can use for travelling outside Canada. People having this document could typically include refugees and people who have received a positive Pre-Removal Risk Assessment (PRRA). These individuals can use this document for travelling anywhere except the country of which the person is a citizen or the country of claimed persecution.
Regulated Occupation: This denotes a profession that typically sets its own standards of practice. People wanting to work in a regulated occupation and to use a regulated title, would need to have a licence or a certificate. Alternatively, they would need to be registered with the regulatory body associated with their occupation. On occasions, some occupations might be regulated in some provinces or territories but not in others. Estimates suggest that approximately 20 percent of jobs in Canada are regulated.
Regulatory Body: This refers to an organisation that sets the standards and practices of a regulated occupation. It is worth mentioning that a regulatory body exists for each regulated occupation within each province or territory.
Rehabilitation: This denotes a process by which a person could overcome criminal inadmissibility. For more details, refer to the definitions of the terms ‘Criminal Rehabilitation’ and ‘Deemed Rehabilitation’.
Relationship of Convenience (or Marriages of Convenience): This refers to a marriage, common-law relationship, conjugal partnership or adoption that is not genuine. It could also refer to a marriage, common-law relationship, conjugal partnership or adoption that the concerned parties entered into for status or privilege in Canada. It is worth mentioning that people in these relationships are usually not members of the family class.
Relative: This denotes a person who is related to another person by blood or adoption.
Relevant Experience: In the context of a person applying to immigrate as a self-employed individual, the term relevant experience refers to at least two one-year periods of experience in the period from five years prior to the application date to the day the authorities make a decision on the application. In many cases, experience would usually be in one of the following areas:
Self-employment in cultural activities or athletics
Participating in cultural activities or athletics at the world-class level or,
Port of Entry: This denotes a place where a person could seek entry into Canada. It could typically include places such as airports, land or marine border crossings.
Post-Graduation Work Permits: This denotes a document issued by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) to eligible foreign students who have:
Graduated from an approved program of study at eligible post-secondary institutions in Canada that are participating in the Post-Graduation Work Permit Program and,
Applied to Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) within 90 days of completing all degree or program requirements
These work permits typically enable the bearer to work legally in Canada after completing their studies.
Post-Secondary Institutions (or Higher Education): This refers to a stage of higher education that typically comes after high school. It could typically refer to a college, a university or a technical school that offers various programs of study. For more details, refer to the definitions of the terms ‘University’ and ‘College’.
Pre-Removal Risk Assessment (PRRA): This refers to a thorough process that evaluates whether a person could face persecution, torture, risk to life or risk of cruel and unusual treatment or punishment, if the Canadian authorities were to return the person to the person’s country of origin.
Principal Applicant: When a family applies together, one member would typically end up being the main or the ‘principal’ applicant. For instance, if a mother applies for permanent residence with her three children, the mother would end up being the principal applicant. In situations where parents are included in an application, the dependent children cannot be the principal applicants.
Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition (PLAR): This refers to a process that schools, colleges, universities, employers and government across Canada typically use for formally recognising a person’s skills that the person has acquired outside of formal education settings. This process enables people to have these kinds of skills assessed and possibly recognised in the form of academic credits. For more information on Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition (PLAR), readers would need to visit the website of the Canadian Association of Prior Learning Assessment (Pan-Canadian).
Privately Sponsored Refugee (or Community Sponsor or Group of Five or Sponsorship Agreement Holder (SAH)): This denotes a person outside Canada whom the authorities have determined to be a Convention refugee or member of the Country of Asylum class. These individuals would typically receive financial support along with other kinds of support from a private sponsor for one year after their arrival in Canada. It is worth mentioning that private sponsors could typically include:
Groups of Five or,
Sponsorship Agreement Holders (SAHs)
Probation: People on probation would probably have been convicted of crimes or offences and have been released without their having to go to a penitentiary jail, reformatory or prison. It is worth mentioning that people on probation would typically need to live under certain conditions specified by the court. For instance, such people might need to live in conditions of a curfew or in situations where they are not permitted to take alcohol.
Professional Training: This denotes a type of training usually offered to a person who is already a professional in a given field. The authorities usually recognise this type of training as meeting an official standard of an industry, profession or an association.
Prohibition: The authorities do not consider permanent residents who have committed crimes either in Canada or outside Canada to be eligible for becoming Canadian citizens for a specified span of time. For instance, people could be considered to be under a prohibition and cannot get citizenship if they:
Are in prison, on parole or on probation in Canada, or are serving a sentence outside Canada
Have been convicted of an indictable offence in Canada or an offence outside Canada in the four years prior to applying for citizenship or,
Are charged with, on trial for, or involved in appeals of indictable offences in Canada or offences outside Canada
Readers might be interested in viewing a complete list of prohibitions. For this, they would need to refer to the section titled ‘Situations that May Prevent You from Becoming a Canadian Citizen’ given on the website of Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC).
Proof of Citizenship (or Citizenship Card or Citizenship Status or Clarification of Status or Confirmation of Status or Citizenship Certificate): This refers to a document issued by the Government of Canada, which confirms a person’s status as a Canadian citizen. For more details, refer to the definition of the term ‘Certificate of Canadian Citizenship’.
Protected Person: This denotes a person whom a Canadian visa officer outside Canada has determined as being a Convention refugee or a person in similar circumstances. This could also refer to a person whom the Immigration and Refugee Board (IRB) of Canada has determined to be a Convention refugee or a person in need of protection in Canada. In addition, this term could refer to a person who has had a positive Pre-Removal Risk Assessment (PRRA) in most cases as well. For more details, refer to the definition of the term ‘Refugee Claimant’.
Protected Person Status Document: This denotes an official document issued by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) that confirms the holder’s status in Canada as a protected person.
Protected Temporary Resident: This refers to a person admitted to Canada on a Temporary Resident Permit (TRP). This would typically be the case when a Canadian visa officer abroad has determined that the person faces an immediate threat to the person’s life, liberty or physical safety.
Provincial Nominee Program (PNP): This denotes a program that permits provinces and territories to nominate candidates for immigration to Canada.
Provincial or Territorial Nominee: This denotes a person nominated for immigration to Canada by a provincial or territorial government that has a Provincial Nominee Program (PNP). It is worth mentioning that such nominees would typically possess the skills, education and work experience needed for making an immediate economic contribution to the province or territory that has nominated them.
Qualification Recognition: This denotes a process that typically involves the assessment of credentials, competencies and work experience in order to assist employers, educational institutions and professional regulatory bodies in making informed decisions.
Qualifications: This denotes the combination of credentials, knowledge, skills and work experience.
Qualifying Canadian Business: The authorities consider a qualifying Canadian business as one in which the percentage of the business controlled by the entrepreneur meets at least two of the following thresholds in one year:
The full-time job equivalents are equal to or greater than two
The total annual sales are equal to or greater than $250,000 Canadian dollars
The net income in the year is equal to or greater than $25,000 Canadian dollars and,
The net assets at the end of the year is equal to or greater than $125,000 Canadian dollars
This definition enables officers to determine whether an entrepreneur has managed and controlled a qualifying Canadian business.
Letter of Invitation to Delegates: This refers to a letter that event organised would need to give delegates when they apply for visas to come to Canada. The authorities require that the letter should include information on the event to establish:
The delegate’s purpose of travel to Canada and,
The delegate’s plans once in Canada
The letter would also need to indicate whether the delegates are receiving any financial assistance. Such financial assistance could typically include airline tickets and accommodations.
Letter of Support: This denotes a letter given to the applicant by the designated angel investor group or venture capital fund. It signifies proof that the designated angel investor group or venture capital fund will support the business idea of the applicant.
Level of Education: This is a selection factor under the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) for which the authorities typically award points. The authorities award points based on the certificate, diploma or degree obtained, in addition to the number of years of schooling.
Level of Study: It is worth highlighting that there are five levels of study for foreign students in Canada. These comprise:
Universities: These institutes offer degree granting programs at the undergraduate (or bachelor’s), graduate (master’s) and postgraduate (doctoral or post-doctoral) levels. They might also offer programs leading to certificates or diplomas in various academic disciplines.
Colleges: These institutes offer academic or professional training programs that lead to diplomas or certificates. It is worth mentioning that these diplomas or certificates could include Collège d’enseignement général et professionnel (CEGEPs) in Quebec. Collège d’enseignement général et professionnel (CEGEPs) are usually mandatory prior to attending a university.
Trade: These include non-university educational institutions in Canada that offer vocational trades and / or technical programs. These could typically include vocational institutions or private career colleges.
Other Post-Secondary: These comprise post-secondary studies that students do not usually undertake at university, college or trade school. This typically includes studies at language institutions and private institutions and in university qualifying programs.
Secondary or Less: These typically include primary and secondary schools in Canada and,
Other: These comprise studies that people cannot classify at any of the above-mentioned levels of study
Live-in Caregiver (or Nanny): This refers to a person who possesses the relevant qualifications for providing care to children, elderly people or people with disabilities in private homes without supervision. It is worth mentioning that a live-in caregiver would need to live in the private home of the employer while they work in Canada.
Local Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) Office (or Local Office): This refers to a Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) service location in Canada. This term does not include ports of entry or Case Processing Centres (CPCs).
Locked In: This denotes information that the system locks in during the immigration application process. Such information will not change over time. For instance, in the case of an age lock in, the system will lock in the age of the dependent child at 18 years. As such, the officers would assess the dependency of the dependent child at that age for the purpose of the application. This is regardless of the time it takes for processing the application.
Low Income Cut Off (LICO) (or Minimum Necessary Income): This refers to the income levels set out by the Government of Canada, where a family spends a higher percentage on necessities than other families tend to do. Therefore, a family would need to remain above the cut-off in order to:
Sponsor a family member for immigrating to Canada or,
Host parents or grandparents for an extended stay
Married: This refers to a state where two people have had a ceremony that legally binds them to each other. It is worth highlighting that this marriage must be recognised under the laws of the country where it took place as well as under Canadian law.
Medical Examination (or Medical Exam or Immigration Medical Exam (IME)): This refers to a physical examination that a Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) appointed medical doctor performs for all immigrants. Some visitors might also need to undergo these examinations. Only after going through these examinations would the authorities permit these individuals to enter Canada. The authorities require that applicants must be in good health and have no conditions or illnesses that:
Are very expensive to treat in Canada or,
Could pose a danger to Canadians
Medical examinations could include laboratory or radiology tests as well, based on the age of the person. For more details, refer to the definitions of the terms ‘Background Check’ and ‘Police Certificate’.
Medical Inadmissibility: This refers to a scenario where the authorities do not permit a person to enter Canada for various health-related reasons. For instance, the person could well:
Pose a danger to public health
Pose a danger to public safety or,
Place an excessive demand on health and social services
Member of the Convention Refugees Abroad Class (or Convention Refugee): This denotes a person whom a visa officer outside Canada has determined as being a Convention Refugee.
Member of the Country of Asylum Class: This refers to a person who is outside the person’s home country or the country where the person normally lives and is seriously affected by civil war, armed conflict or a massive violation of human rights.
Middle School (or Grade School or Public School or Secondary School): This denotes an institution that provides educational programs for grades seven and eight. These schools typically provide educational programs in between elementary school and high school.
Minimum Necessary Income (or Low Income Cut Off (LICO)): This denotes the amount of income a family would need to earn in order to:
Sponsor a family member for immigrating to Canada or,
Host parents or grandparents for an extended stay
Minor Child: This refers to a child who is below the age of 18 years in the provinces of:
Prince Edward Island
In all other provinces, the authorities consider a minor child to be a child who is under the age of 19 years.
Misrepresentation: Situations could arise where a person makes false statements, submits false information, submits false or altered documents or withholds information relevant to their application to Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC). The authorities consider this to be a crime. The documents that people can misrepresent include:
Passports and travel documents
Diplomas, degrees and apprenticeship or trade papers
Birth, marriage, final divorce, annulment, separation or death certificates and,
It is worth highlighting that lying on an application or in an interview with an officer from Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) is also considered an offence. This is in accordance with the provisions specified in the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA) and the Citizenship Act. The authorities could bar a person from being granted Canadian citizenship for a period of five years for misrepresentation. Sometimes, the authorities might find the misrepresentation to have occurred after the person has become a citizen. In this scenario, the authorities have the power to revoke the citizenship. In addition, the person found guilty of misrepresentation would need to wait for 10 years before being granted citizenship again.
Multiple Entry Visa (or Tourist Visa or Visitor Visa): This refers to a visa that permits a person to leave and re-enter Canada more than once during a specified period of time. For more details, refer to the definition of the term ‘Temporary Resident Visa (TRV)’.
National Occupational Classification (NOC): The National Occupational Classification (NOC) refers to a list of all the occupations in the Canadian labour market. It typically describes each job based on the skill type and the skill level. The authorities use the National Occupational Classification (NOC) for collecting and organising job-related statistics as well as for providing labour market information. The authorities use the National Occupational Classification (NOC) for formulating certain immigration requirements as well.
Native Language: A person’s native language refers to the original language that people taught the person as a child. The person would also have spoken the same language in the household while growing up. In many cases, people also refer to the native language as the mother tongue or the first language.
Naturalisation (or Grant of Citizenship): This refers to the formal process by which a person who is not a Canadian citizen could become a Canadian citizen. To be naturalised, a person would need to become a permanent resident first.
Non-Accompanying Family Members (or Non-Accompanying Dependents): This denotes family members who are dependent on the principal applicant, but who are not immigrating to Canada. They would typically include:
A spouse or common-law partner
Dependent children and,
The children of a dependent child
It is worth mentioning that these people would need to be listed on the principal applicant’s application for permanent residence. In addition, these individuals would need to take a medical exam as well. This would enable them to remain eligible for sponsorship at a late date, if needed.
Instruction Guide: These refer to documents that provide:
The information a person would need to know about an application prior to sending it to Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) and,
Help with filling out forms and the prescribed supporting documents
It is worth mentioning that the authorities have posed these guides on the website of Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC).
Intercountry Adoption (or International Adoption): This refers to the legal adoption of a child residing in another country that complies with the laws of both the sending and receiving countries.
International Experience Canada (IEC) (or International Youth Program or Working Holiday Program): This denotes a youth exchange program that allows Canadians of the age of 18 to 35 years to live and work in other countries. This program enables people to live and work in other countries generally for up to one year at a time. The reciprocity of the program permits youth from these same countries to live and work in Canada for up to one year.
International Medical Graduate: This refers to a person who has graduated from a medical school not accredited in Canada (by the Committee on Accreditation of Canadian Medical Schools) or in the US (by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education). This term includes graduates of a US school of osteopathic medicine accredited by the American Osteopathic Association as well.
International Mobility Program: This program permits employers to hire or bring in foreign workers without needing a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA). The authorities typically provide exemptions from the Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) process when they come across reciprocal benefits for Canadians and other competitive advantages for Canada. Some examples of individuals who come to Canada under a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) exempt program include:
International students who have graduated from Canadian schools
People authorised for working in Canada temporarily because of certain free trade agreements such as the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), International Experience Canada participants, some permanent resident (PR) applicants settling in Canada while the authorities finalise their permanent resident (PR) applications and spouses of highly skilled foreign workers
For more details, refer to the definition of the term ‘Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA)’.
International Student: For more details, refer to the definition of the term ‘Foreign Student’.
Internship: This denotes supervised work or school-related training that could be either paid or unpaid. People could find internship positions with some businesses, government departments and non-profit organisations. It is worth mentioning that internships could help newcomers gain Canadian work experience.
Intra-Company Transferee (or General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) or North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)): This refers to a qualified employee who gets transferred within a company to work in Canada on a temporary basis.
Investor: This refers to an immigrant admitted to Canada who:
Possesses the appropriate business experience
Has a legally obtained net worth of at least $1,600,000 Canadian dollars and,
Has made an investment of $800,000 Canadian dollars
Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA): This refers to a document that an employer in Canada would usually need to obtain before hiring a foreign worker. A positive Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) will indicate that a need exists for a foreign worker to fill the job and that no Canadian worker can do the job. This is why people call a positive Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) as a Confirmation Letter. In case an employer requires a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA), the employer would need to send an application to Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC).
Labour Market Opinion (LMO): For more details, refer to the definition of the term ‘Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA)’.
Landing (or Interview for Final Determination): This denotes the final interview with an immigration officer at either a port of entry or a local Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) office within Canada. During this interview, the applicant usually ends up becoming a permanent resident. This typically happens when the person signs the Confirmation of Permanent Residence (CoPR).
Language Assessment: This denotes an evaluation of a person’s reading, writing, listening and / or speaking abilities in English or French. The authorities typically require this to check whether the person meets the language requirements for the application submitted.
Language Requirement (or Adequate Language): Some types of applications require the applicant to possess a certain level of skill in either English or French. Depending on the type of application being submitted, the level of language ability required will be different.
Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada (LINC): This refers to free English language training programs for adult newcomers to Canada. The federal government typically funds these programs. In addition, school boards, colleges and local organisations that typically provide services to newcomers deliver these programs.
Letter of Introduction: This refers to a document sent from a visa office for confirming the approval of:
A study permit or,
A work permit or,
The extended stay for a parent or grandparent from a country that does not require visas i.e. the Super Visa program
It is worth mentioning that the applicants would need to present the letter when they arrive in Canada.
Letter of Invitation: This refers to a letter from a person in Canada on behalf of a friend or a family member who wants to visit. This letter might be helpful if the visitor is from a country where visas are necessary for travelling to and entering Canada. The letter should serve to explain how the friends or family members plan to help the visitor. In addition, it should specify whether the friends or family members have the financial means for supporting the person during a longer visit.
Government Assisted Refugee (GAR): This denotes a person who is outside Canada and whom the authorities have determined as being a Convention refugee. This person would typically be receiving financial support and other kinds of support from the Government of Canada or the Province of Quebec for up to one year after the person’s arrival in Canada. It is worth highlighting that the authorities typically select Government Assisted Refugees (GARs) from applicants referred by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and other referral organisations.
Grant of Citizenship: For more details, refer to the definition of the term ‘Naturalisation’.
Group of Five: This refers to a group of five or more Canadian citizens or permanent residents. Each of the members of this group will be at least 18 years of age. In addition, each of the members of this group will agree to work together for sponsoring a refugee.
Guarantor: The authorities refer to a guarantor as a person who can confirm the identity of an applicant. In addition, the guarantor would be able to confirm the information provided by the applicant as well. Situations could arise where some applicants do not have any guarantors who have known the applicants for at least two years. In this scenario, the applicants would need to complete a Statutory Declaration in Lieu of Guarantor.
Health Card: This denotes a document that enables a person to receive public health care in a Canadian province or territory. All newcomers have the ability to apply for a health card as soon as they arrive in Canada. For more details, refer to the definition of the term ‘Health Insurance’.
Health Insurance: This refers to a Canadian provincial or territorial government program that pays for essential health services provided by hospitals, doctors and certain non-physician practitioners. Newcomers would need to apply to their provincial or territorial health insurance plan for getting coverage and health cards. For more details, refer to the definition of the term ‘Health Card’. For more information, readers would need to go through the legal definition of health card as well.
High Commission (or Mission): This denotes a Government of Canada office, which is located in the capital city of a Commonwealth country. This will usually be the same as an embassy. For instance, the High Commission of Canada to the United Kingdom in London. For more details, refer to the definitions of the terms ‘Embassy’, ‘Visa Office’ and ‘Consulate’.
Humanitarian and Compassionate (H&C) Application: Some people might not normally be eligible for becoming permanent residents of Canada. These individuals are able to apply to become permanent residents of Canada on Humanitarian and Compassionate (H&C) grounds. It is worth highlighting that Humanitarian and Compassionate (H&C) grounds apply to people with exceptional cases. Some factors that the authorities typically look at include:
How settled the person is in Canada
The general family ties to Canada
The best interests of any children involved and,
The degree of hardship that the applicant would experience if the authorities do not grant the request, thereby making the applicant leave Canada in order to apply for permanent residence
It is worth mentioning that Humanitarian and Compassionate (H&C) decision makers will not look at the risk factors that the authorities typically look at in in-Canada refugee protection claims or even a Pre-Removal Risk Assessment (PRRA). This is because these factors are usually outside the scope of a Humanitarian and Compassionate (H&C) application. These factors could typically include:
Danger of torture
Risk to life or,
Risk of cruel and unusual treatment or punishment
Identity Card: This refers to a card used to prove the identity of a person. Usually, such cards would be issued by a government or by a recognised international agency such as the United Nations.
Immigration Document: This refers to an official document issued by a Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) or a Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) office. In addition, it refers to an official document that the Case Processing Centre (CPC) or a Canadian visa office outside Canada has issued as well. Such documents would typically comprise:
The Immigrant visa and record of landing i.e. IMM 1000
The Confirmation of Permanent Residence (CoPR) i.e. IMM 5292
The Permanent Resident Card (PRC)
The visitor record
The work permit
The study permit or,
The Temporary Resident Permit (TRP)
Immigration Officer: This denotes a Government of Canada employee who is in charge of deciding who can enter and remain in Canada. These officers are usually responsible for checking documents. In addition, they often interview applicants to make sure that the applications submitted are accurate.
Immigration Status: This refers to a non-citizen’s position in a country such as a permanent resident or a visitor.
Implied Status: The authorities permit visitors, students or foreign workers to apply for extending their status before that status expires. By submitting their applications prior to the expiry of their status, these individuals can continue to remain legally in Canada until the authorities make a decision on their applications. People in this situation have implied status.
In Good Standing: This denotes a representative who:
Is both licensed and insured
Possesses the relevant qualifications to help applicants through the legal process and,
Meets the prescribed standards of learning, competence and professional conduct
In Process: This denotes the stage an application sent to Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) reaches when the officers have opened it, checked it for completeness and have begun to process it by entering it into the computer system.
Inadmissibility (or Inadmissible Person): This refers to a situation where the authorities do not permit a person to enter or stay in Canada. The reasons for this could include security concerns, criminal offences, human rights violations, health or financial reasons and the failure to comply with Canada’s immigration laws.
Indictable Offence: For more details, refer to the definition of the term ‘Offence’.
Individual Rehabilitation: For more details, refer to the definition of the term ‘Criminal Rehabilitation’.
Exclusion Order: This refers to a removal order issued either by a Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) officer or the Immigration and Refugee Board (IRB) – an independent administrative tribunal. The Immigration and Refugee Board (IRB) is typically responsible for deciding immigration and refugee related matters. In many cases, people removed because of exclusion orders would not be able to return to Canada for one year without obtaining written permission. In addition, people issued exclusion orders for misrepresentation would not be able to return for five years without obtaining written permission too. For more details on this, refer to the section titled ‘Removals’ given on the website of Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA).
Facilitator: A facilitator refers to a financial institution that:
- Has the approval of Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC)
- Is a member of the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation (CDIC) and,
- Helps immigrant investors make and redeem their investments
False Representation: For more details, refer to the definition of the term ‘Misrepresentation’.
Family Class: This denotes an immigration category that comprises any family members sponsored to come to Canada by a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident
Family Members: This denotes an applicant’s closest relatives, in the context of an application to Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC). The authorities usually define it as a spouse or common-law partner, dependent children and their dependent children.
Federal Skilled Worker: This denotes an immigrant selected as a permanent resident based on the immigrant’s education, work experience, knowledge of English and / or French and other criteria that have been shown to help people succeed in the Canadian labour market. The application will typically include spouses and children as well. It is worth mentioning that Quebec selects its own skilled workers. This is in accordance with the provisions specified under the Quebec Skilled Worker Class (QSW).
Financial Support: This refers to the situation where the applicant’s sponsor provides money to help the applicant pay for food, living expenses etc.
Foreign Credential Recognition (FCR): This refers to the process of verifying that the education and job experience obtained by an individual in another country are equal to the standards established for Canadian professionals. It is worth mentioning that credential recognition for regulated occupations is primarily a provincial responsibility that the authorities have delegated in legislation to regulatory bodies.
Foreign National: This refers to a person who is not a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident. For more details, the readers would need to go through the legal definition of a foreign national.
Foreign Student (or International Student): This denotes a temporary resident who is legally authorised for studying in Canada on a temporary basis. Barring a few exceptions, the foreign students would need to get study permits if they are taking a course of studies that will last for more than six months. For more details, the readers would need to go through the legal definition of a student.
Foreign Worker: This denotes a temporary resident whom the authorities have legally permitted to work in Canada on a temporary basis.
Francophone (or French Speaking Person): This refers to a person whose mother tongue is French or whose first official language in Canada is French. This is despite the fact that the person’s mother tongue is a language other than English or French.
French as a Second Language (FSL): This refers to a program used for teaching French to non-native speakers. It is worth mentioning that instructors typically teach French as a Second Language (FSL) in a setting where French is the dominant language.
Full-time Equivalent Studies: This denotes education completed on a part-time or accelerated basis that is equivalent to a full-time program of study.
Full-time Job Equivalent: The authorities have defined this as 1,560 hours of paid employment per year
Full-time Study (or Full-time Student): This denotes a study schedule that has a minimum number of hours i.e. 15 hours of instruction per week during the academic year. This minimum number of hours would also include any period of training in the workplace that is part of the student’s studies. It is worth highlighting that students would need to ask their schools about the full-time requirements of their study schedules.
Full Time Study Status: The educational institution of a student typically determines the full time study status. In many cases, the educational institution would base this status on the number of classroom hours per week.
General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) (or International Agreement): This denotes an international agreement that provides the basis for giving some foreign business people easier access to Canada. Several countries that are members of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) have signed the agreement. This agreement covers three kinds of business people such as:
- Business visitors
- Professionals and,
- Employees transferred within a company to work in Canada
Given Name(s): A given name refers to the name given to a person at birth and by which people most commonly refer to that particular person. A person’s given name typically includes the first name and middle name. For instance, if a person’s name is Shane Donald McGuire, the given names for that person will be Shane Donald. It is worth mentioning that a person could well have one or more given names.