Talking about the role of professional immigration consultants, the figures from the Ministry of Immigration for the period of 2009-2013 show that the applications represented by a professional representative had a higher rate of approval in many economic immigration categories. For instance, the latest figures show that the rate of approval was as much as 62% higher under the Canadian Experience Class; 26% higher under the Federal Immigrant Investor class; up to 16% higher for Federal Skilled Worker (FSW) applications: and over 37% higher for Family Reunification category. The rate of approval was 44% higher for Entrepreneur program in 2011, before the program was closed.

As with many things in life, you can attempt to do it yourself or hire a professional to assist you. Immigration is a bureaucratic process - lots of paperwork, lots of documentation, many details. The application forms have to be completed in a specific way. Even the smallest errors or inconsistencies in your file can delay it for months, or cause an outright rejection. CIC only provides the most basic list of required supporting evidence. It is often the case that the list provided by CIC is a priori insufficient. Often submission letters, affidavits and other documents are absolutely required for a successful application. Of course, you’ll only find out when your file is rejected. Once there is a record of rejection in the government system, it would be harder for you to gain credibility afterwards, and even very minor demands, such as short-term visitor visa or stay extension may result in repeated refusals. In addition, if you ever try to contact CIC during your application processing, you may get frustrated quite quickly. Certain contact information of governmental services is not available to the general public, this is why you may want to rely on a professional to gather and communicate needed information on your behalf.

A Certified Immigration Consultant, before obtaining an ICCRC license, is required to take a full course in all aspects of immigration law, with a focus on nothing but immigration content. The ICCRC member first must pass this very intense course with a high average grade, and THEN he or she must pass the full skills exam. The full skills exam is known to be extremely rigorous. Those taking the exam are not provided with any official text book, and must proceed to answer 100 complicated scenarios within 3 hours. That’s less than 2 minutes per question.

Certified Immigration Consultants must continue to learn about immigration. This is called “CPD” or Continued Professional Development. Members of ICCRC must continue to learn about Immigration through a series of courses on various topics, and must demonstrate to the ICCRC that they have proof that they actually took the course.

Immigration Consultants are prepared, qualified and authorized to represent clients throughout the entire Immigration process, except for Judicial Reviews, which is essentially a law suit against the Canadian government. And the truth is that the vast majority of cases do not end up in a Judicial Review anyway. Immigration Consultants can advise on interviews, hearings, and also represent their clients during tribunals, which could occur if there is a dispute on eligibility, or if pleadings / arguments are required.

Certified Immigration Consultants need to carry errors and omissions insurance. This protects you from any type of negligence or incompliance with legal regulations. Certified Immigration Consultants are authorized to create trust accounts, so that the funds of their clients are kept safe if the fees have not been billed or earned yet. Certified Immigration Consultants pay a hefty annual fee to maintain their membership with the ICCRC.

Immigration Project is a full service certified immigration consulting firm, with head office in Montreal, providing professional assistance with any Immigration application on both federal and provincial level.

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