How will COVID19 affect my immigration process to Canada
Times are uncertain, and there is new information everyday – that is why the E-Visa Family gathered the most asked questions about the immigration process to Canada during the COVID-19 crisis,, so you can be more certain of your dream of coming to Canada!
Canadian border restrictions – My visa has already been approved; can I enter the country?
For visitors (tourists or eTA)
Even with a tourist visa or with a valid Eta (Electronic Travel Authorization), your entry into Canada may be restricted, unless you are travelling for an emergency or for an essential reason – and that will be evaluated by the government of Canada.
For international students (with study permit)
Keep in mind that educational institutions in Canada are not administering presential classes – they have either been postponed or are happening online only. With that being said, if your Canadian student visa was approved by March 18, 2020, and you did not experience any of the symptoms related to COVID-19, you can still enter Canada. However, some measures must be taken:
- A symptom screening is required before and after boarding the plane.
- Use of masks that cover your nose and mouth during your trip.
- Mandatory isolation for 14 days after arrival. In that case, you will have to prove that you have a place to stay where you do not have contact with other at-risk individuals. In addition, you must travel from the airport DIRECTLY to your accommodation, with no stops in between.
If you want to live and study and Canada, check out our video explaining all about it just for you!
For international workers (with work permit)
The precautions to be followed before, during and after your trip to Canada are the same as those mentioned above for international students. Unless you are an essential worker, your canadian visa must also have been approved by March 18, 2020.
However, it is important to note that in order to be able to work in Canada, one must have a SIN (Social Insurance Number). And as of the date of this publication, the Service Canada Centers are not in service, so it is only possible to apply for your SIN by mail or online. Until this number is received, the new resident in Canada will not be allowed to work – not even from home.
Do you wish to work in Canada? Check out the 10 Best Jobs to to Have in Canada!
For permanent residents
If your Canadian permanent residency has been approved by March 18, 2020 and you have not yet arrived in Canada, you will be allowed to enter the country, provided you follow the necessary care and safety instructions mentioned before.
All landing appointments have been canceled until further notice and are being rescheduled to be made by telephone. If this is not possible, you must wait until a new date is available. The Canadian government itself should contact you to guide the next steps.
If your permanent residency has already been approved but will expire before you are able to travel to Canada, you must complete a form on the government website explaining why you are unable to enter Canada. Once the Canadian border restrictions are no longer underway, you must use the same form to contact government officials so that they can indicate the best way to proceed.
If you are unsure about your nexts steps in your immigration process, talk to your immigration consultant!
Online Course and Processing Deadline – How can quarantine influence my study program in Canada?
Many canadian study institutions are offering their courses in online format until the restrictions imposed by COVID-19 are lifted. This means that you can start your studies in your home country and complete them in Canada, without wasting time!
If you have an approved visa to study in Canada, are enrolled in a course that starts in May or June 2020, and in an institution that entitles you to the PGWP, (Post Graduation Work Permit) you can do up to half of your studies online without affecting your eligibility for a Canadian work permit. If you want to know if your chosen institution grants you eligibility to this type of open work permit in Canada and if this option is available to you, you can talk to one of your educational consultants, just book an appointment!
Do you still need to take the Pathway to enter an educational institution in Canada? Talk to your educational consultant, as many universities and their partner schools are offering the 100% Online Pathway option, so you can come to your study program in Canada ready to begin your higher education.
So why waste time? Your dream of quality teaching at a Canadian university cannot wait!
English Proficiency Tests
If you think your plan to do an exchange program in Canada is on hold due to your English proficiency test, you are very mistaken! Even with the imposed restrictions, you still have 3 options to fulfill your dream of studying in Canada:
- Duolingo: Many institutions have come to accept the Duolingo Test as a language requirement.
- IELTS Indicator: The Academic version of IELTS can now be done online, from the comfort of your home!
- TOEFL IBT Home Edition: The format is identical to the TOEFL in test centers, but from your computer and your home.
However, each institution and English proficiency test has its own rules and limitations – to find the best path to your goal, contact your educational consultant!
Can I still send my documents to WES to validate my diploma?
At the time of this publication, World Education Services (WES) is working remotely, but the headquarters remain closed, and thus unable to receive documents by mail. The organization has opened to the option of receiving documents electronically, but this should be checked with your educational institution to assess the possibility.
UPDATE: WES announced that it is currently receiving documents via courier again, however, the processing times is longer than usual.
My permanent residency application is in progress, but I can’t send the documents. And if my term is over?
According to the Canadian government, as long as you fill all requirements, no application in progress will be refused due to lack of documents as a result of restrictions imposed by COVID-19. You will automatically have 90 days to complete the next steps (no matter what your instruction letter says). Some of the steps you may be unable to complete in your application to immigrate do Canada are:
- Sending documents such as passport and police records.
- Conducting medical exams.
- Biometric collection.
Canadian Government Benefits: What are they, and am I eligible?
Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB)
If you were employed but were laid off because of COVID-19 related reasons, the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) might grant you temporary income support of CAD $500 a week (for up to 16 weeks).
You are entitled to this Canadian benefit if you are a worker who:
- Lives in Canada and is at least 15 years old.
- Stopped working for reasons related to COVID-19.
- Earned income of at least CAD $ 5,000 in 2019 or in the 12 months prior to the date of application.
- Did not voluntarily resign from your job.
Note that these rules do not mention citizenship status or type of residence in Canada. So, whether you are a permanent or temporary resident, you can still apply for the benefit, if you fit the rules above.
If I am receiving this benefit from the government of Canada, can I still sponsor my family members or spouse for permanent residence?
Yes, Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) is not considered social assistance, so if you meet all the criteria to sponsor your family members, you are still eligible for it.
If you have any questions about your process or planning, or if you have not yet started your Canadian Dream and are ready to take the first step, count on our specialists in visas, studies and immigration to Canada. We are operating online, with the same dedication as always!
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