Why details can make or break a permanent resident visa

Why details can make or break a permanent resident visa

In all applications for permanent residency, applicants must be truthful. If an applicant is not truthful, he or she can be found to have made a “misrepresentation”. This can lead to the refusal of a Permanent Residency Visa.

Often times, people leave gaps in their employment or address history. Applicants sometimes forget to list an employer or address from years ago. While many immigration officers will allow individuals to correct these errors, errors can be found to be misrepresentations which can result not only in a visa being refused but a person being barred from applying to Canada for some time.

Can incorrect information in my address history really result in a refused visa?
In a recent Court case, an applicant changed his address history from what he stated in a previous application. When asked about the differences, the applicant indicated that the changes were as a result of problems with interpretation.

The immigration officer did not believe the explanation and stated that the applicant was responsible for the accuracy of the information. The officer also pointed out that the applicant signed a declaration that the old application was truthful, complete and correct. Because the applicant made no statement at the time of his immigration interview that there were errors in the old application, the officer found that he misrepresented his addresses. When this matter went to court, the judge agreed that this was a misrepresentation.

Can incorrect information in my employment history really result in a refused visa?
In the same case, the officer also found that the applicant misrepresented his employment history. In the application, a different occupation was claimed than was later disclosed. The applicant could not provide supporting evidence of his occupation and the officer found that there was a misrepresentation in the employment history. The judge agreed.

While there were other issues that may have caused more troubles for this particular applicant (the individual also had a criminal history), this case clearly indicates that misrepresentations in address and personal/work history can result in immigration applications being refused.

What can I do to avoid these problems?
When any immigration application is filed, it is essential that the answers be full and truthful. In the event that an applicant cannot recall all of the information precisely, it should be indicated that errors could be or are present.

While the applicant in this case was allowed to have the case re-determined by immigration on another matter, being truthful and accurate in an application is extremely important.

This article is prepared for general information purposes only and is intended to provide comments for readers and friends of the Filipino Journal. The contents should not be viewed as legal advice or opinion.

Reis is a lawyer with Aikins Law and practices in the areas of immigration law. His direct line is 957-4640. If you would like to know more about Reis or Aikins you can visit the firm’s web page at www.aikins.com, follow Reis on Twitter at http://twitter.com/#!/ImmigrationReis, or connect with him on LinkedIn at http://www.linkedin.com/in/reispagtakhan