Every year hundreds of thousands of people become permanent residents of Canada. Many others become refugees or citizens. But not every applicant succeeds. How can you make your application as compelling as possible?
My specific advice would depend on your circumstances. But there is one important recommendation that I stress to every client:
TELL THE TRUTH!
It sounds simple, but surprisingly many people do not follow it. Some of them set out to deceive: they may submit forged documents or fraudulent application forms. Others carelessly complete the paperwork or make up a story under the stress of an interview.
People rarely get away with dishonesty in applications for immigration, refuge, or citizenship. Officials scrutinise applications and often follow up with questions during interviews. They look carefully for inconsistencies and signs of deception. They have abundant experience with identifying dishonesty and fraud.
What will happen if you are caught making a significant false statement? Your application will be rejected on the grounds that you lack credibility. You will probably be barred from entering Canada for five years or more. If you are in Canada, you may lose your status and be deported. Your history of lying will affect any future applications for immigration to Canada and to many other countries as well. You may even be charged with criminal offences.
Lying to obtain Canadian citizenship is even more dangerous. When you become a citizen, you lose the status of permanent resident. Citizenship can never be taken away from you—unless you obtained it fraudulently. In that case, the government can ask a court to strip you of your Canadian citizenship—and since you gave up your permanent residence, you will no longer have any legal status in Canada and can therefore expect to be deported!
People sometimes turn to a lawyer for help after being caught lying to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada. Unfortunately for them, often nothing can be done. The authorities will have records of the false statements, and no lawyer can change the facts.
What, then, should you do if you are concerned about a weakness in your application, or just want to improve your chances of success? I recommend that you seek advice from a good lawyer. A consultation may be well worth the cost if it results in a successful application. A lawyer may be able to address the weaknesses that you see—as well as those that you do not see. More importantly, a lawyer can help you to start on the right foot by selecting the approach to immigration that will work the best for you.
Contact me for an initial consultation on your case. I have helped people from dozens of countries with Canadian immigration, refuge, and citizenship.