Humanitarian and Compassionate Grounds Application

If you are applying for permanent resident status in Canada, or for a permanent resident visa from abroad, you may be eligible to apply for permanent residence via a humanitarian and compassionate grounds application.

A person either inside or outside of Canada may make an application for consideration on humanitarian and compassionate grounds to be exempted from any of the criteria that would normally be applied in assessing an application to immigrate to Canada.

Once the application is submitted, a Canadian immigration officer must consider it.

The officer is compelled to consider all of the available evidence and must render a decision and provide written reasons for it.

Circumstances can include:

Persons with family who have refugee status, permanent residence or citizenship in Canada
Persons who have in lived in Canada for many years and have integrated into the community
Persons whose removal from Canada would incur a serious rights violation
Persons who are facing removal to a country where there is a generalized risk
Victims of human trafficking
Family members who are excluded from sponsorship under the family class

It is important to note that although the humanitarian and compassionate grounds application is a crucial tool to try to circumvent a seemingly inflexible immigration rule or regulation, it is not the panacea it may appear to be; the bar for approval of an application is set high and it is highly discretionary.

Nonetheless, immigration officers are bound to follow the guidelines and principles that have been set by the judiciary when assessing a humanitarian and compassionate grounds application. Thus, it is imperative that an applicant is aware of said legal principles before they begin the quest to achieve permanent residence via a humanitarian and compassionate grounds application.

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