Everything You Have Ever Wanted to Know About the Visitor Visa Application

Visitor Visa Application

Are you interested in traveling to Canada to visit a friend? Perhaps you have a family member that you have not seen for many years and you want them to come to Canada for a visit. Or maybe you have an upcoming business conference in Canada but not sure what you need to do to get a visa to enter Canada. Whatever your reason for wanting to travel to Canada, this blog how to get a visitor visa may be of use to you.

What Is a Visitor Visa

A visitor visa or type of temporary resident visa that will be issued for persons who have demonstrated to a Canadian visa officer that they meet the requirements to enter Canada as on a temporary basis – or as a Visitor. The person will need to exit Canada at the end of his or her authorized stay.

Who is Considered a Visitor

A visitor is a person who is legally authorized to enter Canada temporarily, or for a visit. The purpose of the visit can be for leisure, visiting family or for business. If you are not a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada and need to enter Canada, you may be required to have a visitor visa.

What are the Eligibility Requirements for a Visitor Visa

An applicant for a visitor visa must establish to the reviewing officer that he or she will only be in Canada for a temporary stay. A big part of this is showing that he or she has “ties” or reasons to return to his or her home country – such as a job, family, etc. Other factors the officer will want to see under the application that the applicant has enough money for the duration of their stay, will not engage in unauthorized work or study, not be a risk to Canada’s security, etc. The reviewing officer must be satisfied that you will leave Canada at the end of your stay. For example, a person who was previously permitted to enter Canada legally but overstayed will have a harder time demonstrating to the officer that they will leave Canada when required if they are permitted re-entry.

Who Requires A Visa

Persons who come from non-visa exempt countries will need to apply for a visitor visa to enter Canada. These are countries such as Ghana, Russia, Cambodia and Ethiopia. Persons from visa-exempt countries such as United States, Italy, and Barbados will require an electronic transit authorization or eTA.

How Long Will It Take for My Application for a Visitor Visa to Process

This depends on the visa office that is processing your application. CIC has a tool on their website that allows applicants to check processing times for these types of applications. However, keep in mind that these are general processing times and different cases will require different processing times.

Do I Need to Submit Medicals

Generally, applicants for visitor visas will not be required to take medicals. However, if an individual plans to visit for six months or more, he or she may be required to submit medicals if they have lived in particular countries for more than six months in the one year immediately preceding the date they wanted to enter Canada. Medicals may either be provided upfront or the applicant may wait until their application is reviewed to receive a request and instructions from the visa office.

What If I Want To Study or Work While I am Visiting Canada

A visitor visa does not authorize you to work or study in Canada, unless otherwise permitted under the Act. In some cases, someone in Canada on a visitor visa may study in Canada without a study permit if the program of study is up to six months.

How Long Can I Stay in Canada as a Visitor

The length of time you can stay in Canada as a visitor is under the discretion of the boarder services officer at the port of entry. When you arrive at the port of entry, the officer will stamp your passport and may or may not write a date in the passport. If the boarder officer writes a date, that means you will need to exit Canada by that date. If the officer does not write a date but only stamps your passport, that means that you must leave Canada six-months from your date of entry. In cases where the boarder services officer wants to limit your length of stay to less than six months, you will be issued a Visitor record. This is a document that will be attached to your passport and it will contain the conditions of your stay.

Getting an Approval on Your Visitor Visa Does Not Always Guarantee Your Entry into Canada

Just because you have been approved for a visitor visa does not mean you will be allowed entry into Canada. When you arrive at the port of entry, you will still be required to demonstrate to the border services that you have reason to want to enter Canada and furthermore, that you will not stay beyond your permitted time. If the officer believes you have other reason to enter Canada, he or she has the right to refuse your entry. For example, if the officer believes you are coming to Canada to find a job and engage in unauthorized work, he or she will not allow you to enter Canada.

Contact Akrami & Associates

The visitor visa is one of the most difficult applications to get approved. Many applicants are refused each year due to their inability to show through their application that they only intend to come to Canada temporarily. Others are not able to show that they will return to their home country at the required time. At Akrami & Associates, we have helped many clients receive approval for their visitor visa, even the most complex cases. If you are having a difficult time putting your application together or do not know where to start, you can call us at Akrami & Associates at 416-477-2545 and we can help you. If you simply want to learn about the application process, you can also book a consultation with one of our immigration professionals for more advise.

At Akrami & Associates, there is always a way

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