The Immigration Division helps clients navigate many kinds of immigration issues:
- Humanitarian and Compassionate applications
- Temporary Resident Permits
- Pre-removal risk assessment applications
- Landing and family reunification of refugees
- Work permits, visitor extensions
- Renewing interim federal health coverage
- Family Class sponsorship
- Deportation and sponsorship appeals at the Immigration Appeal Division
- Federal Court applications for judicial review
Landmark SCC Intervention
In November 2015 the division went to Ottawa to participate in Kanthasamy v Canada before the Supreme Court of Canada. This case focused on how the immigration officers should exercise humanitarian discretion. PCLS participated as an intervener based on our over 40 years of experience representing clients on humanitarian and compassionate (H&C) applications. It was the first time that PCLS has sought intervener status at the Supreme Court in its own name.
We were joined by five other intervening organizations: the Canadian Council for Refugees, the Barbara Schlifer Commemorative Clinic, the Canadian Centre for Victims of Torture, the Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers, and Justice for Children and Youth.
The positive decision from the Supreme Court of Canada will make a lasting impact on the way that humanitarian and compassionate applications are processed and consequently on the lives of so many struggling through the immigration system. The Court found that the current guidelines used by officers were unacceptably narrow and instead adopted a broad and inclusive definition of what constitutes humanitarian and compassionate grounds, focusing on the equitable nature of the provision.