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humanitarian and compassionate

Apply for permanent residence on humanitarian and compassionate (H&C) grounds

To apply for Canadian permanent residence means you chose to immigrate to Canada. For this, you will need to meet the requirements of a particular program.

Normally, foreign nationals who wish to immigrate to Canada must apply for and obtain a permanent resident visa from abroad. However, certain foreign nationals may meet the requirements of an in-Canada immigration class. This then enable them to apply for permanent residence from within Canada.  

In the same vein, section A25(1) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA) allows foreign nationals who are inadmissible or who are ineligible to apply in an immigration class, to apply for permanent residence, or for an exemption from a requirement of the Act, based on humanitarian and compassionate (H&C) considerations.

Humanitarian and compassionate grounds (H&C) apply to people with exceptional cases. People who are not qualified or eligible to become permanent residents of Canada under any program can apply on humanitarian and compassionate grounds.

Immigration, Refugees and Canadian Citizenship (IRCC) assesses these applications on a case-by-case basis. Among the factors they look at are the following:

  • how settled the person is in Canada

  • general family ties to Canada

  • the best interests of any children involved, and

  • what could happen to you if Canada does not grant the request.

 

You may apply for permanent residence from within Canada on humanitarian and compassionate grounds if you:

  • are a foreign national currently living in Canada

  • need an exemption from one or more requirements of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA) or Regulations to apply for permanent residence within Canada

  • believe humanitarian and compassionate considerations justify granting the exemption(s) you need and

  • are not eligible to apply for permanent residence from within Canada in any of the following classes:

    • Spouse or Common-Law Partner

    • Live-in Caregiver

    • Caregivers: caring for children or people with high medical needs

    • Protected Person and Convention Refugees and

    • Temporary Resident Permit Holder

 

You may not apply for H&C consideration if you:

  • are a Canadian citizen,

  • a permanent resident,

  • have submitted an H&C application for which a decision has not been made

  • have an outstanding refugee claim,

  • became a designated foreign national within the last 5 years.

 

As you can tell, applying for Canadian permanent residence on humanitarian and compassionate grounds is a very complex endeavour. In addition to that, you can only apply once. You can’t appeal an H&C application either if you get a refusal. If you are using this avenue to apply for permanent residence, you need to put your best foot forward and do the best job possible. It is therefore highly recommended to work with a Canadian immigration professional if you are considering applying for Canadian permanent residence on H&C grounds.