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Refugee Claim Process

Reunifying with Family

    You might have family members outside of Canada, such as parents or siblings, who you are hoping can join you in Canada. We understand that being with family is very important!

    Applying to be a Permanent Resident

      If you get a positive decision on your refugee claim, you will be eligible to apply to be a Permanent Resident. Most importantly, you need to be a Permanent Resident before you can apply to be a Canadian citizen.

      Appealing a Negative Refugee Claim Decision

        If you get a negative decision on your refugee claim, you might be able to an appeal to the Immigration and Refugee Board. This means that a different board member will look at your case and at the decision.

        Know Your Rights: After the Refugee Claim Hearing

          Sometimes the board member will tell you at the hearing if they accept or reject your refugee claim. Sometimes they tell you that they will need more time and that the decision will be sent to you in the mail.

          Preparing for the Refugee Hearing

            If you have made a refugee claim in Canada, it is very likely that you will have a refugee “hearing.” A hearing is a formal meeting where an official of the Immigration and Refugee Board will listen to your story and look at your documents.

            Completing the Basis of Claim Form

              If you are a refugee claimant, you will need to fill out a Basis of Claim form. The Basis of Claim (BOC) is a very important form. This is where you give more information about yourself and the reasons that you are asking Canada to protect you.

              Know Your Rights: Access to Legal Aid

                If you are living in Ontario and you do not make very much money, you can get a free lawyer to help you with your refugee claim and some other immigration applications. The government of Ontario will pay the lawyer.

                Working with a Designated Representative

                  If you are a minor (under 18 years of age) and you are not here with a parent or guardian, you might have a “Designated Representative” to help you with your refugee case.