Your gateway to Canada


Immigration Newsweek

By Atty. Henry Moyal


Q. I arrived in Canada as a live in caregiver over three years ago. I am preparing all my documents for the submission of my permanent resident application. I will be filing for an open work permit at the same time. My current employer will be releasing me from my employment. I will no longer be employed by my current employer the day I file for my open work permit. I want to return to the Philippines to visit my husband right after I file my application. Will I have a problem? I know open work permits are issued quickly under new rules but I do not think it will be issued by the time I return. Will I encounter any problems?

A. I strongly suggest that you hold off on your trip. I am assuming you have a re-entry visa – so that is not a big concern. The bigger issue is that when you return you will (a) not have your open work permit and (b) you will be the holder of a work permit for an employer to which you are no longer employed. In my view, it is quite dangerous for you to come back to Canada because the officer at the airport will likely call the employer to verify your employment (to which you have none) and upon discovering same will likely not permit you to enter. In that case, the permanent resident application will be in limbo and the whole case can fall apart. I therefore suggest that you wait until you have your open work permit in hand. It will not take long to get it.

Q. I sponsored my wife to Canada. She is a Filipina. She has a dependant child who is in school. She is single and just turned 22 years of age. Before we filed the application we were informed that her daughter gave birth to a baby. The father of the baby has disappeared. It is important for my wife to have her daughter with us. Can the baby also immigrate? Can the daughter immigrate alone?

A. I see a few issues here. Firstly, did you inform immigration that the baby was born? In other words, you must have declared that the child of your wife had a child. When you do so (and you should have), several different laws and forms come into play. In fact, you do not have a choice. You must declare the grandchild or risk that the mother and your wife be deported for misrepresentation. That being said, the fact that the child has a child means that you cannot submit the simple Sponsorship Evaluation form. You must use the Financial Evaluation form. Second, you as a sponsor are now responsible for earning a certain amount of income to sponsor the family. If you are sponsoring a spouse alone or a spouse and dependant child then there is no specific amount of income required. However, as soon as the child has a child – it is quite different. The sponsor must earn a sufficient amount of income based on family size failing which they will be refused.

Assuming you (a) declared the baby and (b) you earn sufficient income, then you have the option of having the child remain in the Philippines or immigrating with the baby’s mother. Keep in mind though that if the baby is immigrating the embassy will want a signed notarized consent from the father allowing child to immigrate to Canada. That could be cumbersome if his whereabouts are unknown.

Q. I immigrated to Canada as a physician three years ago under the Federal Skilled Worker category. My application took two years to process. When I first applied I was single with no children. When I obtained my visa I had one child but did not have the time to inform the embassy. When they called me to pick up the visa, I only had one month to enter Canada. It was all rushed and I was too excited to know what to do. What do I do now?

A. This is tricky. On one hand you knew quite well that you had to inform immigration about the child but you decided not to tell them because you were rushed. While I can understand what happened, the embassy may not have such sympathy. You should have returned the visa and/or inform them of the baby. The fact that you did not tell them means you entered Canada on a misrepresentation. If Canada Immigration finds out you run the risk they will call you to court to explain. The best case scenario is that you file an application to sponsor your child now under compassionate grounds. It is possible but not easy.

*** Correction: In the last article of Immigration Newsweek we mentioned that the Federal Minister has designated the Philippines as a designated country in which asylum seekers to Canada would be presumed to be unfounded. In fact, the Philippines meets all the criteria to have such a designation but last week’s initial list of 23 countries did not yet include the Philippines. The current 23 country list includes most from the European Union and others will be added in future. Happy Holidays. ***

Attorney Henry Moyal is a certified and licensed Canadian Immigration Lawyer in Toronto, Ontario.The above article is general advice only and is not intended to act as a legal document.Send questions to Attorney Henry Moyal by email or call toll free 1 888 8472 078.