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What you should know of IRCC updates for international students

Posted on June 11, 2020
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Study in Canada

International students arriving to study in Canada now have an updated set of guidelines to keep up with the light of dealing with COVID-19.

IRCC (Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada) is committed to ensuring that the needs and safety of every migrant migrating overseas to Canada are accounted for.

In an effort to prevent the spread of COVID-19, the Canada government has already imposed travel restrictions. Non-essential travel has been disallowed and all preventive measures like the 14-day quarantine and social distancing have been maintained.

Students joining and in the middle of courses in Canada were provided the online learning facility with full validity. Canada took a very mature approach in ensuring that there’s no impact of a challenged immigration scenario affecting the nation’s prospects and economy.

Since education is a major area of activity in Canada Immigration, it would be of great help to learn some of the latest updates brought about in the policies regarding international students.

These updates are applicable in view of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic situation. Here is a summary of these updates:

  • Do you have a study or work permit that’s going to expire soon while you are unable to get a new passport? Do you need a visa extension?
    In this case, you should be aware that international students in Canada must apply online to renew their study or work permit. This will give the applicant an implied status. With that, you can study or work in Canada until your application’s processing is complete.
    If you are unable to submit all documents needed while submitting an application, you must give a letter of explanation that your document retrieval is pending owing to the COVID-19 situation. Don’t worry, because Canada gives you 90 days’ time to submit the documents.
  • Are you worried if your study permit will be processed with a big delay due to COVID-19 disruptions to essential services?
    Understandably, but appreciatively IRCC is doing its best to process your application at the earliest. But delays can’t be avoided entirely.
  • Has your May acceptance been deferred to September? Are you thinking if you will need a new Letter of Acceptance?
    Now, if you are present in Canada when the deference took place, you will have to begin your studies within 150 days, counting from the day of deferral. If the following semester comes earlier, you will need to start with that within the stipulated number of days.
    Otherwise, you must change your present visa status or bid bye to Canada.
  • Are you ready to start your online courses in this year’s summer or fall? Are you doubtful that the online classes you started after getting a study permit could affect your eligibility for Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP)?
    As of now, you can do up to 50% of your course from outside Canada, say your home in your country. Your eligibility for the PGWP will stay intact. What’s more, no time will be deducted from the length of your PGWP in the future, up to December 31, 2020.
  • Do you wish to start your studies online without a study permit? Well, that’s possible! But you will lose your PGWP eligibility in the future. For PGWP, you will need a study permit. A study permit approval will also do. This applies even if you are doing your course abroad.
  • So, in case you started your courses online and want to maintain you’re your future PGWP eligibility, will you need to be a full-time student? The answer is “Yes”. Unless until your Designated Learning Institution (DLI) is unable to offer full-time study, you are supposed to do a full-time study program.
  • Are you a fresh graduate with an implied status and awaiting a decision for your PGWP application? Are you looking to come to Canada now?
    In such a case, you will need a Letter of Introduction from IRCC for exemption from travel restrictions to come to Canada. This is because your study permit is no longer valid.
  • Will moving online to do a course from Canada for more than 50% of the total program affect your PGWP eligibility? Well, if you moved to online coaching owing to COVID-19, you may still not lose eligibility for PGWP, even if your online learning will now cover over 50% of the course.
  • Are you concerned whether your access to the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) will affect your eligibility for PGWP? No worries. It won’t affect your PGWP or PR eligibility.
  • Do you have a son/daughter or dependent who is a minor, with a Study Permit in Canada and do you want to come to Canada?
    Well, immediate family members of residents who are not citizens of Canada or permanent residents, have an exemption from travel restrictions in Canada. Hence, you may be allowed to come to Canada by obtaining authorization from IRCC to board a flight. You will also have to apply for a temporary visa or an eTA (Electronic Travel Authorization).
  • We understand if your semester is suspended due to COVID-19. But in such a situation can you work full time?
    Well, since a suspended semester isn’t treated as a scheduled break, you could work only for those number of hours authorized by the terms in your study permit.

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