Immigration consultant not
really needed, says Canada Embassy
But if you hire one, these are the things you
should pay attention to...
- Majorie van
Published Wednesday, December 26, 2012
“You do not need to hire an immigration representative,” said a Citizenship
and Immigration Canada (CIC) spokesperson to this website.
“It is up to you. Your application will not be given special attention or
guaranteed approval if you use one.”
According to the CIC all the forms and information that is needed to apply
for a visa are available free on the CIC website, and if you follow the
instructions in the application guide, anyone should be able to complete the
application forms and submit them without any assistance.
Between 2009 and 2011 a total of 736, 336 visa and 399 work permit
applications were approved by the Canadian government for UAE residents.
Many applicants in the UAE apply through an immigration consultancy company
the opening of the Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP), migration
aspirants who do opt to seek the help of an immigration consultant are advised
to pay attention to a couple of things.
Whether an immigration consultancy firm or other representative is
accredited by the government can easily be verified, says the CIC.
“Foreign consultants can register in Canada and do so through the
Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council (ICCRC), which in 2011 was
designated as the regulator of immigration consultants,” notes the CIC
“Under Canadian law, it is an offence for anyone other than an authorised
representative to advise or represent, for a fee or other consideration, at any
stage of an application or proceeding.”
Thus, in order to make sure that your application is in good hands,
checking the accreditation is the first step. This can be done by viewing the
list of accredited companies on the CIC
If a company is not authorised to act as a representative of the Canadian
government, the company cannot be held liable for its practice under the
“CIC will not deal with non-authorised immigration representatives who
charge for their services,” said the CIC spokesperson.
When an applicant is not satisfied with the services of an immigration
consultant and finds out this consultant was not authorised to deliver the
services, this case should be referred to the Department of Economic Development
“Since becoming the Minister of Immigration, Citizenship and
Multiculturalism in 2008, Minister Kenney has called upon officials in foreign
countries where immigration fraud is most prevalent to take stronger enforcement
action against such fraud. He has urged those governments to protect their
citizens from exploitation and abuse by unscrupulous immigration
representatives,” said the CIC spokesperson.
However, most companies in Dubai are accredited by the Canadian government
to act as representatives.
Yet, there are hundreds of applicants who are unsatisfied with the services
they had paid thousands of dirhams for. Many of these applicants never made it
to Canada, and they feel that they were cheated by the companies.
website has reported of several such complaints, and immigration consultants
have responded to these complaints
Asked which role the Canadian Embassy plays in addressing these complaints,
the CIC spokesperson said that given the fact that Canada cannot directly
investigate in matters in other countries, the investigation and prosecution of
third parties residing abroad is challenging.
However, monthly inspections are carried out and the consultants are
frequently asked to adapt their policies, rules and regulations or
“The accreditation of immigration representatives is managed by the
regulatory body to which the consultant, lawyer, paralegal or notary belongs
(e.g., the appropriate Canadian provincial or territorial law society, ICCRC, or
the Chambre des notaires du Québec). It would be up to them to revoke the
person’s accreditation,” explains the spokesperson.
“If you know your immigration representative broke the law while
representing you, they could be charged under the Immigration and Refugee
Protection Act, the Criminal Code of Canada or the laws of your country of
“If the law they broke was immigration-related (for example, if your
immigration representative submitted fraudulent documents with your
application), immediately contact the CIC office processing your application or
the Canada Border Services Agency.
“If your immigration representative has defrauded you personally (for
example, if they charged you a fee, but did not fulfill what was promised or
refuse to return your passport without another fee), contact your local law
enforcement agency,” advises the CIC spokesperson.
Being among the early Canadian Immigration Law Firms, Bayat Legal Services
has been located next to the Canadian Consulate for 19 years. “We see dozens of
applicants every year requesting for help regarding there Canadian Immigration
file,” says Pej Mohyeddin, who works at the office as an Immigration &
“Unfortunately though, they would come to see us only after having their
consultant file the application and collect money from them.”
Cont on Page 2.....
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