Changes to the Immigration Appeal Division Rules

Changes to the Immigration Appeal Division Rules

When applying for various immigration programs in Canada, the result isn’t always what you would hope. If you do get a negative decision, you are sometimes eligible to appeal that decision. This is the role of the Immigration Appeals Division (IAD). Our CEO and RCIC, Al Parsai, offers an explanation of this division:

Let’s say you have the right to appeal. You may then take the matter to the Immigration Appeal Division (IAD). The IAD decision-maker (member) hears your arguments and could decide in your favour. In other words, IAD has the power to decide your case without sending it back to an immigration officer. Of course, IAD is a division of the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (IRB), the largest administrative tribunal in Canada.

Al Parsai

Recently, some of the old Rules, established in 2002, have been changed. Some new rules have been added as well. We’ll explore key points from both here, as well as look into who is affected by these new Rules.

<<Canadian Immigration Courts and Administrative Tribunals>>

Rules that have changed

The time limit to provide an appeal record is one of the major changes in these new Rules. Now, for sponsorship and residency obligation appeals, the time limit for the Minister to provide an appeal record is 60 days instead of 120. Additionally, for removal order and Minister’s appeals, there is now a 30 day time limit to provide an appeal record instead of the previous 45 days.

The Rules for time limits to disclose documents in an appeal have also changed. The new time limit for a party to provide documents in support of their appeal is 60 days after receiving the appeal record. This replaces the old Rule of 20 days before a hearing. Additionally, providing documents in response to another party’s evidence must be done 30 days or more before a hearing. The old rules allowed for this to be done up to 10 days before a hearing.

Some other rules that have been changed too. Providing witness information must now be done 30 days before the hearing instead of 20. Moreover, documents provided for informal resolution processes are no longer confidential and can be used in later appeals. However, matters discussed are still confidential. Lastly, applications to change the date and time of hearings must be made 3 working days before the hearing instead of 2. The only exception to this rule is if it is done for medical reasons.

<<​The IRB is offering three hearing models>>

New rules

There are 3 new rules in place regarding time limits for providing supporting documents in an appeal:

  • The party must notify the IAD if they do not want to provide any supporting documents within 60 days of receiving the appeal record;
  • Moreover, if no documents are submitted and no notification is given, there are new consequences including declaring an appeal abandoned;
  • Lastly, there are new factors the Division takes into consideration when deciding whether to use documents provided outside the time limits.

There are also new rules in other sections. Now, witness information must include a “a brief statement of the purpose and substance of the testimony”. The IAD Rules also now lay out the conduct of a hearing and the procedure for applications to reopen an appeal.

<<IRB time limited>>

Exceptions to the new Rules

The new rules are already in effect and will apply to all pending appeals filed before January 14, 2023. The only exceptions are if:

An appeal was filed before January 14, 2023The time limit to disclose documents remains 20 days before the hearing. Also, the responding to evidence has a time limit of 10 days before the hearing.
A copy of the notice of appeal is provided to the Immigration Division or Minister before January 14, 2023The time limit to provide an appeal record remains 120 days for sponsorship and residency appeals. The time limit also remains 45 days for removal order and Minister appeals.
The notice to appear for an Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) conference is dated before January 14, 2023The documents submitted for an ADR remain confidential.

For more information, read the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada post or the IAD Rules and a Regulatory Impact Analysis Statement (RIAS).

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    Al ParsaiAl Parsai, LLM, MA, RCIC-IRB
    Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant
    Adjunct Professor – Queen’s University – Faculty of Law
    Ashton College Instructor – Immigration Consulting
    Author – 88 Tips on Immigration to Canada

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