I applied to visit Canada but now I am facing a visitor visa refusal. Can I appeal?
If you applied to visit Canada and your with a visitor visa refusal, you can appeal; however, we usually recommend that people reapply. Why? Because the process is often quicker and cheaper for the applicant.
Be aware that when you reapply, your application will be treated as a new application, but the reason for your last visitor visa refusal will be noted on your file and any information you submitted in the past will be on the record.
What are my chances of getting approved if I reapply?
You can get approved for a refusal, and we have helped many clients get visitor visas after facing a denial. Each case is different and has a different set of factors, so the chances really depend on your specific situation and what evidence you can submit to satisfy certain factors.
The important factors
Immigration officers look at several factors when they review and decide whether to approve or refuse a visitor visa application. Here are some of the big ones:
• Reason for your stay
• How long you plan to stay
• Prior travel history
• Ties to your home country
What are immigration officers looking for in each category? Overall, officers are determining whether you have a valid reason to come to Canada and if you are likely to return to your home country at the end of your stay.
There is no one size fits all way to meet these requirements - it will vary in each situation depending on why you want to come to Canada and how long you want to stay for.
For example, if you want to visit Canada to attend a friend's wedding and you plan on staying for one week, you should be prepared to show that you have the finances to take care of yourself for that period (and anyone else in your family traveling with you), that you have already booked a return flight and that you need to get back to your home country to return to work, for instance.
In contrast, if you apply for a visitor visa for general tourism to travel Canada, you want to stay for six months but you only have $1,000 in savings to support yourself for that period, you are likely to face a visitor visa refusal.
You should be able to demonstrate a valid reason for your stay and information about where you will visit, where you will stay and how you will finance your trip and accommodations in Canada. If you have traveled often in the past, and have never overstayed in another country, that is a positive factor on your record. If you have overstayed or were deported from another country, that can be a negative factor depending on the strength of your overall application.
Officers will look at your financial ability to support your stay and your ties to your country of residence. Ties can include but are not limited to, a home or property, employment, enrollment in a program of study, family and community ties. You should be able to show that there are things that are motivating you to return home after your visit and that you are not motivated to remain in Canada for longer than you are authorized.
When to reapply
If you do not have a valid reason to come to Canada, or you have no ability to finance your stay, then you may want to wait, save money and try again in the future.
If you are able to finance your trip and have ties that you can show in your home country, you may be a good candidate to reapply by enhancing your application and making sure that you are showing the officer strong evidence. Note that the categories outlined above are important, but there are other factors that are examined and each case will have its own set of facts to consider.
If you are thinking about reapplying, it is very important that you apply with new information. If you simply submit the same information and documents, you will get the same answer - a refusal.
If you are planning to travel to Canada for business, different documents and information will be needed and you may need assistance from your employer or the company you are visiting in Canada to obtain a letter of invitation outlining why you are coming to Canada and what business activities you will engage in.
This general information applies to the basic eligibility requirements for visitor visa applications and the reasons why most applications are refused. If you have criminal or medical inadmissibility issues, simply reapplying with new information will not be enough to get an approval. You will need to look into overcoming your criminal or medical inadmissibility, which is possible and we have covered in past blogs.