The Federal Court of Canada is the national court authorized for managing legal disputes that fall in the domain of the federal law. According to the Canadian law, an applicant can request the Federal Court to review immigration decisions under any program. A review in the Federal Court of Canada must be requested within the stipulated time as judicial reviews are time-bound. The time limit of making an appeal for a review will differ for every program, for instance, the time-frame given to apply for a rejection on spousal sponsorship visa might be different from a refugee claim review. It is important to be updated with these time-frames. If you want a review or want to make an appeal, professional assistance is best advised.
Applications that can be reviewed by the Federal Court of Canada –
- Humanitarian and Compassionate Ground Application
- Pre-Removal Risk Assessment
- Refugee Appeal
- Request for Deferral Decision
- Visa Visa Refusal
- Spousal Sponsorship Application Refusal
A Judicial Review must be applied within 15 days from the time the refusal was received if the appeal is made from within Canada. If the Appeal has to be made from outside Canada, the appeal time extends to 60 days.
A review at the Federal Court is conducted in 2 stages –
- Application for Leave – The first stage – the Leave Stage – is where the applicant is required to submit a request for review with a comprehensive explanation of why the applicant feels the decision to be unfair, biased or erroneous. At this time, it is very important to submit a convincing and persuasive application – one that establishes that your case is worthy to be reviewed. If the Federal Court permits Leave, it means that it has granted you the review and has concurred to examine your case.
- Judicial Review – In this stage, the applicant will be asked to attend the oral hearing before the Federal Court and represent his/her case. The applicant will have to explain to the Court in-person why he/she thinks that the immigration officer’s decision is wrong or unreasonable. The hearing for the judicial review is held within 30-90 days of leave granting. At this stage, you can represent your case yourself or you can hire an experienced immigration lawyer to represent you for formal hearing. If you hire professional aid, you are free to attend or miss your hearing.
Remember that the onus of granting or refusing visa does not lie with the Federal Court. The Federal Court only decides if the immigration officer failed to review your case as per the Canadian Immigration Laws. If the decision of the immigration officer is found to be erroneous, the case is sent to be re-evaluated by a different immigration officer. However, if the Court agrees with the immigration officer’s decision, you will have to accept the final verdict of the Court.