A 23-year-old woman from the Caribbean who I will call June entered Canada in October 2014 and was granted visitor’s status for one month.
She had a Temporary Resident Visa from the Canadian Embassy in her country.
In July 2013 while walking on the street in her hometown, she met a Canadian visitor who I will refer to as John. A friendship developed.
Upon his return to Canada he visited her on at least five separate occasions during a 12-month period. The relationship developed and John invited June to visit him in Canada.
She made an application for a Temporary Resident Visa and her first application was refused but she was successful in her second attempt to visit John in Canada.
June entered Canada in October 2014 and incurred a few problems at the airport as she did not mention the name of the person who invited her to Canada. She stated she was ashamed to mention his name due to the huge age gap between them. However, she eventually mentioned John’s name and told the officer he was waiting outside.
After questioning John, the officer decided their story was consistent and accepted that they were in love and granted her visitor’s status for one month, even though she was 21 and he was 56.
At the end of her visit she became ill and requested an extension. The person who assisted her with completing the application for an extension of her visitor’s status stated that she intended to marry John’s nephew who is about her age.
At this point, she consulted me for a second opinion as she had not received any documentation from Canadian immigration authorities. I made another application amending the previous one.
She was told she had fulfilled the purpose of her visit and she should leave Canada. However, she and John were expecting the birth of their child in September 2015 so she did not leave.
Since her arrival in Canada she has lived with John. However, June and her daughter and a few acquaintances were in a shopping mall in early November 2015. One acquaintance was arrested for shoplifting and as a result it was discovered June was out of status and was requested to appear at the Greater Toronto Enforcement Centre at Airport Road on Nov. 26, 2015.
There, an Exclusion Order was issued and she was told she must leave Canada in the near future.
June and John contacted my office and were advised that because they were in a common-law relationship for over one year, they both share a child and have proof of cohabitation, they could proceed with a common-law partner in Canada class application.
This was prepared and filed on Dec. 2, 2015 and was acknowledged by CIC Dec. 30, 2015.
June was requested to report on April 11. She was advised by a CBSA officer that if she does not get a decision on her spousal application within two months, she will have to leave Canada and John will have to make an overseas application as her application in Canada may take years to process.
Good news: about two weeks ago the parties received a positive decision on their applications.
John received a letter saying he met eligibility requirement and is responsible for his spouse for three years. June received a letter stating she has also met the eligibility requirements, that she can apply for an open work permit, must have a valid passport and pay the Right of Permanent Residence Fee, which they did.
The couple is now awaiting an appointment for June’s Permanent Residence. June is no longer under the threat of deportation and can now live a happy life in Canada.
I wish to take this opportunity to express my deepest sympathy and condolences to the family of well-known cricketing and sporting personality Johnny Bujan who suddenly succumbed to his injuries sustained in a motor vehicle accident on April 30 in Trinidad.
He will be a great loss to Canada’s cricket community as he was a super team manager, a humanitarian, generous and very committed and dedicated to cricket, his players and colleagues. He is surely missed and we send our love and thoughts to his family and close friends as he was an amazing person.
Johnny, whom I have known for over 25 years, was my friend and colleague and ultimately became like a family member to myself, my daughter and son.
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Sukhram Ramkissoon is a member of ICCRC and specializes in immigration matters at 3089 Bathurst St., Suite 219A, Toronto. Phone 416-789-5756.