November 7, 2023
Visitor Visa Reconsideration
With Artificial Intelligence (AI) in full swing at all levels and organizations, it is no wonder Immigration, Refugee and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) is making use of this rapidly expanding technology to relieve the work of their overwhelmed employees given the Department receives tens of thousands of applications in all existing Canadian immigration programs.
In the past few years we noticed an increase in refusals for temporary visas – visitor visas, study and work permits. While we do not have the exact indicators that are taken into consideration when refusing such applications, once we receive the Global Case Management System notes (GCMS), request made under the Access to Information Act, we notice that the use of Chinook and now reference to AI. The reasons given in the refusal letter are generic at times with little if any reference to the supporting documents.
Further to the many consultations we have with clients who have been refused, if we determine their case was strongly supported by documents, they have been refused more than once and the reasons for refusal are generic we advise clients to consider challenging the negative decision to the Federal Court. Recently we received an approval of a temporary visitor visa application for one of our clients, whose application was initially refused by IRCC.
We challenged the negative decision at the Federal Court, the judge granted Leave and we were scheduled to attend a full judicial review hearing. Before the hearing we reached a settlement with the Department of Justice. The application was re-opened and sent to the visa office for redetermination, with another visa officer.
It is critical that once the file is reopened, the applicant should submit updated documents and submissions to support the application. We gathered as many updated documents as possible, like bank statements, supporting letters, itineraries, financial documents, etc., to prove the case. In other cases, like for study permit, we update the acceptance letters from the educational institution, support letters from parents or persons who are financially involved in the case, trips abroad, etc.
Much to our and our client’s delight, the redetermination went smoothly and very fast. Within a month, we received an approval for their visitor visa. It is unfortunate clients sometimes have to resort to all these steps but when the purpose of visit is important and/or a client is unfairly refused it is reassuring to see the process can work to correct errors.
If you need any help with your visitor visas or temporary (study or work) permit applications or challenging negative decisions, please feel free to contact us.