Applicants for any type of visa or permit to Canada should take into account the average processing times when calculating how long it will take for them to hear back on their application.
In Canadian immigration, the processing time is how long it takes authorities with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) to process your application, from the day they receive it to the day they come to a decision.
Please note that processing times do not include the time it may take to submit an expression of interest and receive an Invitation to Apply, to prepare documents, to submit an application, or for the mailing of finalized visas, permits, status cards, etc.
There are a few factors that will affect the processing time of your application:
Below, we go through some of the most popular streams and approximate processing times. It is important to remember that processing times cannot be guaranteed and are estimates only. The following times are based on IRCC’s average processing times as stated on January 4th, 2018.
Please note that sometimes processing times depend on whether an application was submitted electronically using the online procedure, or in hard copy through a paper-based procedure. Processing times outlined below specify if they vary between online versus paper-based applications.
In 80% of cases, an application submitted through Express Entry is processed within 6 months from the date it is received. Please note that these processing times do not include the time it takes to submit an Express Entry profile, receive an Invitation to Apply (ITA), and prepare the final application for submission.
Study permits vary greatly in processing time depending on the applicant’s country of residence.
The shortest processing time is approximately 1-2 weeks, but applicants applying from some countries can expect processing times close to 16 weeks. Study visa processing times also vary depending on the volume of applications received, so if you’re applying close to the beginning of Canada’s academic year you may experience delays.
This is a visa type that falls under the work permit extension category. Application processing times for post-graduation work permits vary depending on which method you use to apply.
If you submit your application online, it should be processed within 99 days. If, however, you submit a paper-based application, you can expect a longer processing time of around 117 days.
A new permanent resident (PR) card takes 13 days to process. However, renewing or replacing an old PR card takes can take 24 days to process.
Applications take approximately 12 months to be processed when sponsoring a spouse for permanent residence.
Processing times used to vary depending on whether the spouse was residing inside or outside of Canada (inland sponsorship vs outland sponsorship), but they have now been largely standardized to within 12 months for all spousal sponsorship applications.
Processing times for a visitor visa depend on where you are making the application from, and how.
If you apply from within Canada, online applications are processed within 12 days and paper-based applications within 27 days. However, applications made from outside of Canada will vary depending on the applicant’s country of residence.
It should be noted that all times mentioned above are in no way guaranteed, and are subject to change without notice, at the discretion of IRCC.
To find out more about moving to Canada under any category, get in touch with us today by completing a free assessment form below!
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