Immigration

Immigration information

International and exchange students are temporary residents in Canada. It is therefore important to learn about the procedures and documentation necessary to enter and study in Canada. Immigration is regulated by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), a department of the Canadian federal government.


Immigration law
Information

Under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, educational institutions such as the University of Ottawa cannot give advice on immigration questions. Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada has up to date information about how to study in Canada. If you have questions, including about IRCC services and programs or your application, contact the IRCC client support centre.

The University of Ottawa cannot contact IRCC on your behalf, for example, to speed up the processing time or to inquire about your immigration application.

Outside experts available to you on campus

While we are not authorized to give immigration advice, we do bring in outside experts to offer information and advice.

 

Immigration Consultant

We offer appointments with a certified immigration consultant who can answer questions from students about temporary residence in Canada. To make an appointment with him, email us at uointl@uOttawa.ca.


If you have questions on permanent residence or Canadian citizenship, contact Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada. Student advising with our consultants is limited to temporary residence in Canada.

Immigration Workshops

We often invite experts to give workshops about immigration. Here are some typical
workshops:

Workshops are announced on our Facebook page (UOttawa Bureau International Office). Not all workshops are offered every year.

Impact of changes to your immigration status

Tuition fees at the University of Ottawa vary according to your immigration status in Canada. If you change your status, you must submit proof of your new status to InfoService to update your information in our database and possibly qualify for Canadian tuition fees. For more information on tuition, see the rules governing university fees.

If you are in the process of obtaining permanent residency status, we require a letter from
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada confirming that it has received your complete
application.


Changes to your status will affect your University Health Insurance Plan (UHIP) coverage. You
must make sure that there are no gaps between the end of your UHIP coverage and the start of your provincial coverage. Normally your provincial coverage starts three months after the change to your status.


For more information about insurance coverage and deadlines to make any changes or apply
for refunds, speak to the information officer at the International Office in person (Tabaret
M386) or email uointl@uOttawa.ca.

Travel outside Canada

Your Canadian study permit or student visa does not guarantee entry to any other country. If
you would like to travel to another country during your stay in Canada, you must contact its
consulate or the embassy to find out which documents you need to travel there.

Here is a list of consular offices in Canada.

Our immigration consultant is able to offer advice only on Canadian immigration matters and
cannot help you with your application for a visa to another country.

COVID-19: Immigration FAQ

Newly admitted international students

Can I begin my studies outside Canada with or without a study permit?

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has confirmed that international students can study online outside Canada without an approved study permit. 

IRCC has also confirmed that if you have a valid study permit, or been approved for a study permit for a program starting in the spring, summer or fall, or have applied for a study permit before the start of your program (i.e. before classes begin), but you can’t travel to Canada at this time due to travel restrictions, your eligibility for the Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) will not be affected.

If you’re in this situation, you may:

  • begin your classes while outside Canada, and
  • if you started your studies between May 2020 and September 2020 and they are 8 to 12 months in length you may complete up to 100% of your program outside Canada.
  • if your studies are more than 12 months in duration, you may complete up to 50% of your program while outside Canada. 
  • if you have already started your studies between May 2020 to September 2020 or if you start your studies in Fall 2020, you won’t have time deducted from the length of your future post-graduation work permit for studies you complete while outside Canada up to April 30, 2021.
Can I still apply for my study permit? Is IRCC continuing to process applications in spite of the situation?

IRCC has confirmed that they are continuing to receive and process study permit applications. They have indicated on their website that Visa Application Centres (VACs) won’t accept or process paper applications for a visitor visa, study permit or work permit until further notice. You must apply for your study permit online. If you have all the documents required to submit your application, we encourage you to submit your application now. If you are not able to include a specific document because of measures in place due to the COVID-19 (e.g. digital photo, IELTS results, etc.), we still encourage you to submit your application. However, for every document you are not able to provide you should instead provide a letter of explanation detailing the reasons you are unable to provide it and mentioning that you will provide the missing documents as soon as you are able to using the IRCC web form.

IRCC has also implemented a two-stage interim application process to allow offices to approve study permit applications in principle as long as the applicant meets all requirements of the program. International students are still required to provide biometrics, undergo medical exam and submit original travel documents when required to have an application fully approved. International students are not able to travel to Canada at this time, unless they fall under the exemptions and demonstrate that entering Canada is non-optional and non-discretionary.

We therefore encourage you to submit your study permit application online as soon as possible if you have not already done so. As a reminder, a study permit is required for studies completed in person in Canada.

Please know that IRCC is working tirelessly on processing study permit applications and understands how important it is for students to be able to begin their studies on time

I've received a Biometrics Instruction Letter that says I have 30 or 90 days to provide my biometrics. However, all offices that collect biometrics are temporarily closed, and I am unable to provide them. What should I do?

The deadline to provide biometrics was extended until further notice. IRCC has indicated on their website that you don’t have to give your biometrics until the sites reopen. This applies to you, even if your biometrics instruction letter (BIL) says you have 30 or 90 days.” You will be able to make an appointment when sites reopen, and you are not required to inform IRCC you cannot meet the deadline. Please note that IRCC has also confirmed that applications won’t be refused or closed if an applicant can’t give your biometrics due to COVID-19 closures.

What will be the status of my application if I am not able to submit biometrics, additional documents or send my passport?

You are required to complete all steps of your application in spite of the current situation. IRCC has extended deadlines to submit additional documents and biometrics. Please note that IRCC has confirmed that: “applications will not be refused for non-compliance, and all applications currently in progress at IRCC offices abroad, at case processing centres and within the Domestic Network will continue to be processed but may experience delays.” If you are not able to complete all the steps, your application will remain pending until you are able to complete it. Please note that the current processing times may not reflect the disruptions caused by the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).

Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has implemented special immigration measures due to the COVID-19 outbreak, including an implementation of a temporary 2-stage approval process. The temporary 2-stage assessment process will allow IRCC notify international students once they have passed the preliminary eligibility assessment (stage 1 of the 2-stage process) but before they give their biometrics.

To be eligible for the 2-stage assessment process, applicants must have submitted a new study permit application electronically on or before September 15, 2020, and their program of study must begin in the fall 2020 (or earlier). The applicant must also submit all the documents needed in order for an officer to make a preliminary eligibility assessment. If the client is unable to provide any of the required documents, they will not be eligible to receive a preliminary eligibility assessment until they submit the information or documents requested of them (with the exception of biometrics, medical examinations and police certificates).

I am eligible to apply for the Student Direct Stream, but I cannot submit all required documents, such as the International English Language Testing System results and proof of a Guaranteed Investment Certificate. How can I apply for SDS

The Student Direct Stream (SDS) is available for residents of China, India, Vietnam, the Philippines, Pakistan, Senegal and Morocco.

IRCC has confirmed that international students who do not have the required documents for the SDS upon submitting their application should be directed to apply through regular study permit channels or apply through the SDS once services resume and they are able to submit the required documents.

What happens if my study permit is refused?

There is no guarantee that IRCC will approve your study permit application, even if you receive an approval in principle. This will depend on the strength of your application. You can find more information about how officers assess a study permit application on IRCC’s website. If you begin your studies through distance learning and receive a refusal from IRCC on your study permit application, you will have three scenarios:  

  1. Reapply for a study permit: If you feel that the reasons for the refusal can be overcome, reapply for a study permit. Remember that a study permit is required for in person classes in Canada.
  2. Finish the term and receive uOttawa credits: Since IRCC has confirmed that a study permit is not required for online courses taken while Outside Canada, you can finish your Fall 2020 courses. Even if your study permit is refused and you choose not to reapply for a study permit, you can receive the credits if you successfully pass the courses.
  3. Drop courses before the reimbursement deadline: If you receive a refusal of your study permit application before the deadline  to withdraw from a course or an activity and receive a financial credit (less administrative fees), which is October 2nd 2020 for the Fall 2020 term, you are able to drop your courses and request a refund. If you withdraw from your courses after this deadline, you will not be able to request a reimbursement. If you want to opt for this option and still plan on studying at uOttawa at a later term, please contact the Admissions Office (undergraduate students) or your academic unit (graduate students) to enquire about the impact on your offer of admission and your options.

Current international students

Can we leave Canada and return to our home country?

When deciding whether you should stay in Canada or leave, there are multiple factors that may influence your decision.

For instance, the most important factor is your health and safety. We strongly recommend verifying your destination’s safety situation as well as the countries in which you are transiting if it is not a direct flight. Additionally, students need to ensure they are well enough to travel so as not to present a risk to themselves or others. Check the Frequently Asked Questions section on the how to protect yourself section on the university’s Coronavirus website to learn more about what to do to protect yourself and others around you should you decide to travel.

Furthermore, make sure to check the entry/exit requirements put in place by your home country or countries where you plan to transit to see if you are legally able to enter those countries with the current situation. Canada also announced that it has closed its borders to non-citizens or non-permanent residents of Canada arriving by air with some exemptions. This order is currently in effect until October 21, 2020 for travelers coming from the U.S. or September 30, 2020 for any other country. The exemptions to this travel restriction include international students who:

  • hold a valid study permit; or
  • received a letter of introduction from IRCC dated on or before March 18, 2020.

We encourage you to consult the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship (IRCC) webpage for the most updated information and further details.

Academic integrity and continuity remain a priority. Our goal is to ensure that students can complete all courses in which they are currently registered and receive their evaluations and credits without any interruption. 

For the fall term, all our courses, with some exceptions, will include a distance-learning option. Whether you are an international student or a Canadian who cannot come to Ottawa, you will be able to learn from home without having to be physically present on campus.

Another factor to consider, secondary to your health and safety, is if you can continue to study outside of Canada. As an example, you need to make sure that you can access your courses and exams from the country you are traveling to.

The situation continues to change, and we cannot guarantee you will be allowed to enter Canada in the near future. The institution is not able to act and override any measures or restrictions imposed by the Government of Canada as the situation evolves. We encourage you to consult the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship (IRCC) webpage for the most updated information.

 

 

How will this situation impact my post-graduation work permit (PGWP)?

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has released instructions regarding the impacts on your immigration status due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

Furthermore, IRCC has released specific measures relating to post-graduation work permit

IRCC has confirmed that the effects of COVID-19 will be taken under consideration when assessing Post-Graduation Work Permit program eligibility. Although under normal circumstances, in order to be eligible for the Post-Graduation Work Permit Program, international students must maintain their full-time student status during each academic session of the program or programs of study they complete and submit as part of their Post-Graduation Work Permit application, if an international student is unable to meet this criteria due to reasons related to COVID-19, they will still be considered eligible for the PGWP, provided they meet all the other program criteria.

Therefore, your post-graduation work permit will not be negatively impacted at this time if:

  • Your in-class courses in Canada are being moved to an online-only format because of COVID-19;
  • You had to put your studies on hold or study part-time because of COVID-19 during the winter or spring-summer 2020 terms.

If you’re outside of Canada right now, you’re still eligible for a post-graduation work permit if you can’t travel to Canada at this time due to travel restrictions and you have a valid study permit. If you’re in this situation you can take your classes while outside Canada and complete up to 50% of your program online (until April 30, 2021) if you complete the other 50% of your program in Canada. You won’t have time deducted from the length of your post-graduation work permit for studies you complete outside Canada until April 30, 2021. 

In order to apply for your PGWP you will need:

  • an official letter that confirms you’ve completed your study program (Undergraduate students may obtain this letter from their Faculty. Graduate students may obtain this letter from InfoService.)
  • an official transcript, or a copy of your transcript accessible through your uoZone account

Please note that IRCC has confirmed that if you are unable to obtain a letter of completion or final transcript from uOttawa, as a temporary facilitation measure, you may apply for a post-graduation work permit without your letter of completion or final transcript. You should submit a letter of explanation indicating that you are unable to submit the requested documents due to school closure. Once these documents become available, you should submit the documents using the IRCC Web form. If no documents are submitted by the time the Case Processing Centre in Edmonton is ready to process the application, the documents will be requested by the processing officer.

The Canada Border Services Agency has also confirmed that traveling to the border for the sole purpose of processing immigration documents is not considered non-optional/non-discretionary travel. If you are currently in Canada, do not visit a land border (flagpole) to apply for immigration documents until further notice.

What is the impact of studying part-time for an international student?

Here are the immigration impacts of studying part-time:

Actively Pursuing Studies: From an immigration standpoint, you may study part-time and still be considered to be actively pursuing your studies and therefore, meeting the conditions of your study permit.

Work during the academic term: In order to be eligible to work on campus or off campus on a part-time basis during an academic term, you must be a full-time student.  

Work during a scheduled break (reading week and spring-summer term): In order to be eligible to work full-time during a scheduled break, you must be enrolled full-time in the term preceding and the term immediately following the break. 

Working after your studies: One of the eligibility criteria for the Post Graduation Work Permit is to have continuously studied full-time during an entire program of study. We recommend that you keep copies of all relevant documents if you plan to apply for this type of work permit in the future, in order to justify and explain your part-time studies. 

For the impact on your University Health Insurance Plan (UHIP), please contact the International Office: uointl@uOttawa.ca.

What is the impact of a leave from studies for an international student?

Please consult your faculty or academic unit about their leave of absence and leave from studies policies. Here are the immigration impacts of a leave from studies:

Leave from studies and study permit: According to the guidelines from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) on study permits, you have no action to take regarding your immigration status if your leave from studies is less than 150 days or if you leave Canada. Your study permit remains valid until the expiry date indicated on the permit. If you decide to leave Canada, we encourage you to access the Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA) and Government of Canada websites for the most up to date information, as the situation is constantly changing due to the evolving situation with COVID-19. If your leave from studies will be more than 150 days and you wish to remain in Canada, you must apply to change your status to visitor or worker.

Work during your studies: You will no longer be authorized to work on or off campus during a leave from studies or during a scheduled break following a leave from studies (for example, the spring-summer term or holiday break). You must be enrolled as a full-time student in order to be authorized to work using your study permit. You can learn more about on campus and off campus work on IRCC’s website.  

Unauthorized Study/work: As stated on IRCCs website: Non-compliance with study permit conditions or engaging in unauthorized work or study may also negatively affect future applications that are made under the IRPA and IRPR. For example, a subsequent study permit or work permit may not be issued until a period of 6 months has passed, since the cessation of the unauthorized work or study or failure to comply with a condition, per section R221 and subsection R200(3)

Post-graduation work permit: One of the eligibility criteria for the Post Graduation Work Permit is to have continuously studied full-time during an entire program of study (exception applies on your last term). For this reason, we recommend that you keep copies of all relevant documents if you plan to apply for this type of work permit in the future in order to justify and explain your leave from studies in a future application. You can learn more about the eligibility requirements for this type of permit on the IRCC website

IRCC Compliance Reporting: If you take a leave from studies, the University will report your academic status as “no longer enrolled” or “authorized leave” in the next compliance reporting period with IRCC. You may receive an email from IRCC at a future date asking for clarification on your leave from the University. We encourage you to keep copies of all supporting documents to this end.

For the impact on your University Health Insurance Plan (UHIP), please contact the International Office: uointl@uOttawa.ca.

Can I work full-time during the spring-summer term?

This depends whether or not the spring-summer term is considered to be a regularly scheduled break based on your program of study. Please see the two options below.

Undergraduate students: Your study permit authorizes you to work full-time during regularly scheduled breaks (i.e. reading week, etc.) if you are registered as a full-time student in the period preceding and following the break. In order to determine if the spring-summer term is a regularly scheduled break, you must consult the suggested course sequence for your program of study. If the sequence indicates that you are expected to take courses during the fall and winter terms only, the spring-summer term (from May 1 to August 31) is considered a regularly scheduled break. For more information on work authorizations and taking courses during a scheduled break, please visit IRCC’s website. Note that should you decide to take courses during a regularly scheduled break, it is still considered a break and the requirement to study full-time therefore does not apply.

Graduate students: Your study permit authorizes you to work full-time during regularly scheduled breaks (i.e. reading week, etc.) if you are registered as a full-time student in the period preceding and following the break. If your academic program does not have any scheduled breaks and requires continuous enrolment, you will only be eligible to work up to a maximum of 20 hours per week off campus. We encourage you to check directly with your Academic Unit to see if you are expected to enroll during the spring-summer term.

Please note that the University has a policy where graduate students can only work up to 10 hours a week. If you wish to work more than this, you must request for an exception to this rule in your uoZone account. You can find more information on how to request the exemption on the University website.

Both my study permit and study visa will expire soon. What should I do to extend them?

IRCC has confirmed that students already in Canada must apply to extend their study permit in order to continue their studies in Canada even if their program has been shifted to an online format. If you are outside Canada and need to extend your study permit, we recommend that you book an advising appointment to discuss your options in detail. 

Study Permit Extension: Information on the study permit extension process is available on Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada’s (IRCC) website. You must submit your application online. Please note that your passport must be valid for at least 6 months when you apply. Therefore, it is always recommended that you renew your immigration documents in the following order: 1- passport, 2- study permit 3- visa. Due to the high processing times and the disruptions we are currently experiencing, we recommend you apply for an extension up to 6 months before the expiry date of your current permit. If your permit expires in less than 6 months, please apply as soon as possible.

Documents to apply: We recommend international students include two academic documents in their application: an official enrollment verification letter and an unofficial transcript. You can request official academic documents from InfoService. The document you should request is called Official Enrollment Verification. You must ask them to add a remark that indicates where you are in your program of study (for example, that you are in your second year of a four-year program). You can also request a remark that confirms the date enrolment opens for the upcoming term if you are not enrolled in courses.

Please note that in person services are currently closed. InfoService accepts document orders online through your uoZone account, as usual. For students who are not able to order their documents online, InfoService is accepting document requests by email at document@uottawa.ca. If you decide to send your request by email, you will be asked to fill out the Request for Documents form and send in a scanned copy.

Missing documents: If there are any documents that you are unable to include in your application (for example, a passport), you will need to instead upload a letter of explanation detailing why you are not able to obtain the document at this time (and attach proof of your inability to obtain the document if available) and informing them that you will provide the missing document using the IRCC Web form as soon as it is available. Your application will remain pending until you are able to provide the missing documents and you will benefit from implied status until a decision is made on your application. Implied status will allow you to continue working and/or studying while you wait for your study permit.

Proof of financial support: There are several options you can use as proof of financial support. As a reminder, you must demonstrate that you have the minimum funds necessary to support yourself as a student.

TRV Application: Information on applying for a new temporary resident visa (TRV) is available on Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada’s (IRCC) website. You may submit an application online, as soon as you receive your study permit. Please note that a TRV is solely a travel authorization. You are not required to have a valid TRV unless you have plans to travel outside of Canada.

Processing of the application: Please note that IRCC has confirmed that applications will not be refused for non-compliance, and all applications currently in progress at IRCC offices abroad, at case processing centres and within the Domestic Network will continue to be processed but may experience delays. The current processing times may not reflect the disruptions caused by the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).

Biometrics: IRCC has announced that students who are applying for a study permit, or extending their study permit, or restoring their status as a student within Canada are currently exempted from giving biometrics. This exemption applied to all new applications and applications that are already in progress. IRCC has also confirmed that students are currently not required to pay biometrics fee. For those who paid the biometrics fee, a refund will be processed when IRCC finalizes the application. Please note that this temporary measure does not apply if you are outside Canada. If you are outside Canada, you are still required to provide biometrics.

I have applied to extend my study permit, but I have not received an answer yet. My current study permit expires soon. What should I do?

If you applied before the expiry date of your current study permit, you benefit from implied status until a decision is made on your application and have no additional action to take. As indicated on IRCCs website: “If a temporary resident applies for renewal of their work or study permit and their permit expires before a decision is made, paragraph 186(u) and section 189 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations (IRPR) (the right to continue working or studying under the same conditions pending a determination of their application for renewal) apply only as long as the person remains in Canada.” In order to benefit from implied status, you must apply to extend your status before the expiry date indicated on the permit.

If we are stuck in Canada due to travel restrictions/border closures, what will happen if our study permit expires?

If you are a temporary resident of Canada, your study permit, work permit, or visitor record is valid until the expiry date indicated on your immigration document

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) asks all temporary residents to maintain their legal status in Canada. International students who are not able to return home may extend their stay in Canada by extending their study permit (where possible), or by changing their status to visitor or worker.

According to IRCC, international students who were not able to extend their stay before the expiry date of their last permit, may restore their status within 90 days from the expiry date of their legal status. International students who lost their status after January 30, 2020 and were not able to apply for a restoration of their status before the 90-day timeline, may be able to apply for a restoration until December 31, 2020.

If you have questions regarding your immigration status and the impacts, we encourage you to contact an immigration advisor at the International Office by e-mail: uointl@uOttawa.ca. You may also contact IRCC directly using the Web form.

Traveling to Canada

I am a student who is outside Canada. Can I travel to Canada?

If you fall under these exemptions, you may travel to Canada by air.

Canada announced that it has closed its borders to non-citizens or non-permanent residents of Canada arriving by air from a country other than the United States with some exemptions. This order is currently in effect until September 30, 2020 and may be extended beyond this date. The exemptions to this travel restriction include international students who:

  • hold a valid study permit; or
  • received a letter of introduction from IRCC dated on or before March 18, 2020; or
  • are coming from the United States

However, even if you do fall under these exemptions, you will still need to demonstrate that traveling to Canada is non-optional/non-discretionary.

In addition, the Canada-US borders are also restricted to non-optional or non-discretionary travel until October 21, 2020 and may be extended beyond this date.

Please note that if you’re travelling by air, you need to pass a health check before you’re allowed to board your flight. Anyone who shows symptoms of COVID-19 will not be allowed to enter Canada by air, regardless of their nationality.

Please note that the use of a non-medical mask or face covering to cover your mouth and nose is mandatory during travel on all flights arriving and departing from a Canadian airport. When you arrive in Canada, officers will assess your health before you leave the airport. They will also question you on your plans to self-isolate. It is mandatory that you isolate for 14 days even if you have no symptoms. You must declare to the border officer: “I/we acknowledge that I/we must self-isolate for 14 days to prevent the potential spread of COVID-19.” For more information on how to isolate effectively, please visit the Public Health Agency of Canada’s online resource. You may also download the ArriveCAN mobile app to reduce waiting times at Canadian ports of entry and to limit points of contact.

We have worked on guidelines that include a list of possible supporting documents to bring when travelling to Canada in order to minimize the risk of refusal. Currently, we are only advising students who can answer “YES” to all of the following four questions (Q1, Q2, Q3 and Q4) to travel to Canada. If you must answer “NO” to any of these questions, or if you are not able to provide supporting documents, travel is not recommended at this time. Please note that entry to Canada is not guaranteed and the final decision always rests with the border services officer.

Q1: Do you fall under these exemptions? (Yes or No) 

As of July 31, the following foreign nationals who are currently outside Canada are exempt from Canada’s travel restrictions and can travel to Canada if they are travelling for a non-discretionary purpose:

  1. International students who hold a valid Canadian study permit
    • Supporting Document to present to the border officer: status document [IMM 1442] (the actual valid study permit document)
  2. International students who received a letter of introduction from IRCC dated on or before March 18, 2020
    • Supporting Document to present to the border officer: a paper copy or e-version of the letter of introduction dated on or before March 18, 2020
  3. International students who are coming from the United States
    • Supporting Document to present to the border officer: a paper copy or e-version of the letter of introduction

If you are coming from a country other than the U.S. and had a study permit application approved after March 18, 2020, you do not fall under the current exemptions of the travel restrictions. Therefore, you should not make any plans to travel to Canada until the travel restrictions are lifted, as you will not be allowed to travel to or enter Canada at this time.

Q2: Is your reason to travel to Canada non-optional and non-discretionary? (Yes or No) 

Travel will be deemed discretionary or non-discretionary depending on individual circumstances. The decision as to the purpose of travel will rest with Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) officers. Border services officers will assess the circumstances surrounding your travel and consider, for example, whether any of the following apply. Please note that you may not be able to meet all the criteria [a) through d)] of this question. However, it is our recommendation that you should meet at least two of them. The more criteria you can demonstrate that you meet, the higher the chances of being able to prove that travel to Canada is non-discretionary:

  1. Are you established, residing and studying in Canada?

If you are established in Canada, your return is non-discretionary. You will be required to prove you are established in Canada or Canada is your primary residence. Below is a list of possible supporting documents to present to the border officer:

  • Proof of residence in Canada (at least one of the following documents should be available for returning and newly admitted students)
    • Lease agreement dated before March 18
    • Property ownership dated before March 18
    • Lease agreement dated after March 18 along with an expired lease agreement dated before March 18
    • Property ownership dated after March 18 along with an expired lease agreement dated before March 18 or property ownership dated before March 18
  • Proof of local address (at least one of these should be available for students returning to Ottawa)
    • Driver’s licence
    • Ontario photo ID
    • Bill addressed to you (for example, hydro or phone bill)
    • Canadian bank statement
  • Proof of enrollment and attendance (the recommendation is to have both available)
    • Interim transcripts
    • Enrollment Verification or Statement of Studies document listing all terms in which you were enrolled
  1. Are you expected to begin or resume studying upon arrival after completing the quarantine?

If you are starting or resuming your program in the Fall, you should be able to provide proof of enrollment or admission. In order to prove enrollment or admission, the following supporting documents are recommended:

  • Newly admitted students:
    • Offer of admission; and
    • A recently issued Enrollment Verification or Statement of Studies document confirming enrollment in the Fall 2020 term
  • Returning students:
    • A recently issued Enrollment Verification or Statement of Studies document confirming enrollment in the Fall 2020 and all previous terms

We recommend that you obtain an official enrollment verification or statement of studies if you are solely enrolled in online courses for the Fall 2020 term and are returning to Ottawa for reasons other than mandatory physical presence to complete a course.

We recommend that you obtain an unofficial enrollment verification or statement of studies, available through your uoZone account, if you are enrolled in courses that require mandatory presence on campus.

  1. Is your presence in Canada necessary for your continued participation in the program (such as in laboratories or workshops)?

If you are required to be in Canada in order to start or continue your course, research or project, the University will issue a support letter to be presented at the port of entry (POE).

  • Undergraduate students: You are able to request your support letter from InfoService. You must send an email to document@uottawa.ca with the subject line “Official Letter – On Campus Course” to request the letter. Please note that InfoService will only issue support letters to undergraduate students who are enrolled in courses where presence on campus is mandatory for the Fall 2020 term.

You will also need to retrieve your class schedule and course details to prove that you have an “in-person” course:

  • Class Schedule: Log into your uoZone account, go to the Applications tab and select My Class Schedule. Select the Fall 2020 term and then click on Continue. Under the Room column, it should indicate the room in which your course will be held on campus.
  • Course Details: Go to the uOttawa course timetable webpage and click on Launch the Class Search Tool. On the Search for Classes screen, select the Fall 2020 Term, and enter the Subject Code and Course Number (as an example, FSS 1150), then click on Search. Click on Details under the Section column, and then find the Instruction Mode row. It should indicate that the course will be In Person.

Your class schedule and course details will supplement the letter provided by InfoService.

  • Graduate students: You are able to request this support letter from your academic unit, who will issue it after consultations with your supervisor and confirmation of the activities required to be completed on campus.
  1. Is pursuing online studies not possible from your home country (for example, due to internet restrictions or bandwidth limitation)?
    • If you feel that you are unable to pursue your studies online from your home country, you will need to prove this to the CBSA officer. You may consider the following supporting documents:
      • A copy of the University’s minimal technical requirements for distance learning which are available on the uOttawa FAQ website under the question: “What technical requirements do I need to study online?” The list is not complete, but it includes the basic, more frequently used tools students will need for distance learning. Please note that without the proper device, students will not be able to complete courses online either in their home country or Canada. 
  • A copy of your local internet service providers’ quotes for available internet packages and confirmation of not being able to meet the minimum requirements indicated above.
  • If you wish to demonstrate that it is not possible to follow your courses due to the difference in time zones, an email from your professor stating that synchronous attendance is mandatory would be required as a supporting document.

A border services officer will make a final determination on your eligibility to enter Canada at the POE.

Q3: Do you have a quarantine plan? (Yes or No) 

Read our guide on how to prepare your quarantine plan and register your plan once you are booked to travel to Canada. 

Q4: Is your quarantine plan satisfactory? (Yes or No) 

The University will review all plans and inform you if there are changes to be made to your plan before you travel to Canada.  However, the final decision on whether a quarantine plan is satisfactory rests with border and public health authorities. If your quarantine plan is not considered satisfactory, you may be sent to a designated place chosen by the border officer at your own expense. 


Last review by a Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant (RCIC): 16-09-2020


 

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