Having your refugee claim denied can be a frightening prospect, you should contact an immigration lawyer to help fight against deportation. Understanding the basic process of refugee appeals, can take away some of the uncertainty.
If a refugee claim has been denied by the Immigration and Refugee Board’s Refugee Protection Division (RPD), your next step would be to file an appeal. RPD appeals are generally first filed and heard by the Refugee Appeals Division (RAD). However, there are some types of refugee claimants who are not permitted to appeal to the RAD, such as those who made refugee claims when entering Canada from the United States, those who abandoned or withdrew their claim, etc.
The Refugee Appeals Division
If your initial refugee claim is denied by the RPD, then upon receiving their decision you will have only 15 days to submit a Notice of Appeal, you have 30 days after receiving the RPD’s decision to “perfect” your appeal by submitting an Appellant’s record.
You can request an appeal based on:
- There was an error of law in the original decision
- There is evidence that was not available at the original hearing (you will need to explain why it was not available).
Often there will not be a hearing held, but occasionally an oral hearing may be ordered, especially if there are any credibility issues and/or new evidence presented. When the RAD makes its decision, it can either uphold the RPD’s decision, overturn the RPD’s decision or order a new hearing at the RPD with instructions/directions.
Federal Court-Judicial Review
If your initial appeal to the RAD is unsuccessful it may be possible to apply to the Federal Court for a judicial review. This means that a judge will review the RPD/RAD’s decision. This form of reconsideration is not granted as of right, the court must give you “leave” (permission) first. If leave is granted by the courts, you will be given an opportunity to submit an application for judicial review which will lead to a hearing before the court.
You must show that there was an error made in the decision or that the decision was unfair or unreasonable if your application for judicial review is to be successful.
Humanitarian and Compassionate Grounds Application
If your refugee application is ultimately unsuccessful there may be different immigration applications that you could file. One of the most common applications for permanent residence status for those deemed ineligible is a Humanitarian and Compassionate Grounds Application. You must not have received your negative refugee decision within one year in order to apply for this application. This type of application will look at how settled you are in Canada, your family ties in the country, whether or not there are children involved and also may consider what would happen if the application was not granted. This type of application is intended to make exceptions for people that would not otherwise be eligible for status but whom have already made a strong connection with the country.
If you have received a negative immigration decision or if you are applying for permanent residence for the first time, the best way to protect your status in Canada is to work with an immigration lawyer. Mehdi Au LLP has immigration lawyers on staff to assist you with your case.
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