Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada is taking action to help families build their lives together in Canada by expediting the spousal application process.
To do this, IRCC has increased the number of decision makers for spousal applications by 66%. It expects to be able to process applications more quickly and reduce wait times significantly.
IRCC also plans to “go digital.” The organization will switch from paper applications to digital forms, to improve processing times and allow employees working remotely to easily exchange documents and information.
IRCC will also begin piloting facilitative biometric measures to comply with public health protocols. Similarly, interviews with applicants will soon be held remotely.
After implementing these initiatives, IRCC aims to complete 18,000 decisions by the end of the year, bringing the total for 2020 to 49,000.
In addition to these plans, IRCC will continue to work around the pandemic to meet its goals for the year:
“COVID-19 has created uncertainty for Canadians who are sponsoring spouses for permanent residence. We will continue to search for innovative and compassionate ways to reunite families, while following the advice of our public health experts to protect the health and safety of Canadians.”
The Honourable Marco E. L. Mendicino, P.C., M.P., Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship reinforced this sentiment:
“We understand that the last few months have not been easy for those who are far from their loved ones in these difficult times. This is why we are accelerating the approval of spousal applications as much as possible. Our government will continue to find new ways to keep families together.”