The novel coronavirus crisis has hit every country around the world. The COVID-19 disease has forced countries to adopt unprecedented measures. Most countries are in some state of lockdown. To prevent the spread of COVID-19, Canada and other countries have imposed restrictions on international arrivals.
Here’s the latest immigration news from Canada (valid for April 2020). Find the latest news from IRCC /CIC here.
Are you stuck at the Canadian border?
Call the Immigration Law Office of Ronen Kurzfeld immediately. Our lawyers and expert immigration staff is helping people understand their status and whether they can come/return to Canada at this time.
Our offices are functioning normally. Of course, we are limiting in-person meetings in keeping with the directives of the Canadian government.
Who can enter Canada in April 2020?
At this time (30 March 2020) Canada has severely restricted the entry of foreign travellers into the country. At the time of writing, only the following people are being allowed to enter Canada.
- Canadian citizens and permanent residents
- Immediate family members of Canadian citizens and permanent residents
- Permanent resident visa holders (can come to Canada to complete landing and landing interview)
- International students – those holding a valid Canadian study permit or have a letter of invitation dated on or before March 18, 2020
- Work permit holders
- Temporary workers who have a letter of introduction from IRCC
- Permit-exempt work
- Accredited officials under R190(2)(a) and their families
- Protected persons under subsection A95(2) (refugees)
- Transit passengers
- Crew members on vessels
- Persons of national interest
If you are travelling or planning on travelling to Canada during the COVID-19 crisis, make sure you speak to an immigration lawyer first! There are a number of restrictions on who can come, and you don’t want to be quarantined at an airport or be forced to return to your country and be quarantined.
What happens once you come to Canada?
As of 26 March 2020, anyone coming to Canada will have to mandatorily self-isolate for 14 days, under the Quarantine Act. Anyone who fails to adhere to this can face a fine of $750,000 and/or imprisonment for up to 6 months.
“Essential workers” are exempt from the 14-day self-isolation.
How to enter Canada during the COVID-19 outbreak and travel restrictions?
After the coronavirus outbreak, there are only two likely ways to enter Canada:
- By road from the United States of America. However, all ‘non-essential’ travel between the two countries has been barred.
- By air to Toronto Pearson International Airport, Montréal-Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport, Calgary International Airport, and Vancouver International Airport. These are the only flights that are receiving international flights.
- Sea routes are highly inadvisable given cruise ships and passenger transport ships are being quarantined off the cost for weeks at a time.
Is your immigration application taking longer than normal?
COVID-19 has placed an unexpected and large administrative burden on the Canadian government. Do not be surprised if your express entry, invitation to apply, student visa/permit, work permit or provincial nominee application has longer than normal processing times.
Once the COVID-19 crisis eases around the world, IRCC and provincial immigration departments will take a few weeks to get back up to speed and clear the backlog.
If you or your loved ones are facing an immigration emergency, speak to Ronen Kurzfeld today. We can help with deportation orders, last minute appeals and any other immigration problems.