Information on How COVID-19 is Impacting Refugee Claims in Canada
Updated: June 2020
Information on COVID-19 and Refugee Claims in Canada
Below, we have included information on how the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is affecting refugee claims in Canada. This page will be updated as more information becomes available.
Refugee claims at Ports of Entry from the United States
Individuals in the U.S. with the intention of applying for a refugee claim in Canada will be turned back to the U.S. when they reach the Canadian border.
IRCC appointments cancelled until further notice
Refugee Claimant appointments are cancelled until further notice. IRCC offices will not accept refugee claims, interview refugee claimants or process refugee protection claimant document (RPCD) renewals in person.
You can still make a refugee claim if you’re already inside Canada.
Instructions to submit a refugee claim at an IRCC office
If the individual has completed all the refugee claim forms, place the forms and documents in an envelope and deposit them in the on-site drop-off box or to an official.
If an individual would like to make a refugee claim but has not completed the refugee claim forms, they may email: IRCC.RefugeeClaim-Demandedasile.IRCC@cic.gc.ca. The individual will be contacted by email regarding next steps.
Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (“IRB”) in-person hearings and mediations postponed
All in person hearings including refugee hearings and refugee appeal hearings and mediations, other than detention reviews, are postponed. The postponed hearings and mediations will be rescheduled once IRB resumes its operations.
Extension of Time to File an Appeal before the Refugee Appeal Division
The IRB is allowing extension of time for filing a notice of appeal and perfecting an appeal in refugee appeal cases. If the deadline falls on or after January 1, 2020, the date is extended to 30 days after the date of the Resumption Notice which will be posted on the IRB website. This extension does not apply to appeals that were dismissed before March 15, 2020.