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D.A.M., Lawyer
Category: Canada Law
Satisfied Customers: 2755
Experience:  Cross-Border (US/Canada) Lawyer
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How long do refugee status imigrants in Canada need to wait

Resolved Question:

How long do refugee status imigrants in Canada need to wait to go to another country to reside? (a family was split up from Africa, all were sent to Australia except for this one small family and they want to be reunited--I am a friend of the family trying to find answers)
And at what age can they go without the rest of the family? 17yrs old? what rules apply?
Thank you.
The kids I am concerned about are 15 & 17yrs old. Does the 17yr old have options to move on her own once she is 18yrs old, or before this??
I appreciate any information you can provide as to how to proceed.

Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Canada Law
Expert:  D.A.M. replied 7 years ago.

Do you mean that 15 and 17 year old children were separated from their parents?

Please explain who is in Canada (no names please) and how long they have resided in Canada.

Have they been grated Permanent Residence, or is their Refugee claim still pending?
Customer: replied 7 years ago.

They are here with their mother, but the mother isn't the one who was raising them, they were being raised by their grandmother, who was sent to Australia with the rest of the extended family. Only the mom, stepfather (who now is gone) and kids remain. The reason I ask is especially for the 17yr old. Children's aid helps the younger ones, though they should all be in Australia. Mom & her 4 kids, but because the kids are younger & there is custody issues at this time, the younger ones & mom can't go anywhwere, but the 17yr old, being over 16 is looking for options to go.


Can she take steps to go to Australia on her own? They have permanent residency status for at least 1 yr I believe. The 17yr old is ready to go without her family at this point. I would like to see if there is something that can be done even to get her to Australia temporarily so that she can sort out staying there permanently once she arrives?? Anything that will legally allow her to go there.

Thank you.


Expert:  D.A.M. replied 7 years ago.

It sounds like their refugee claim has not yet been approved (if you're stating that they may have residency for a year). If it is still in process they could not go to another country and claim refugee status because of international agreements relating to refugee claims (which requires the claim be made in the first country of safe harbor).

What would need to happen is that the child would need to first be approved for permanent residence in Canada and then find a basis for immigrating to Australia (be it marriage, work, etc.).

Alternatively, if the grandmother is in Australia and her residency has been approved already she may have rights to sponsor her daughter and grandchildren to immigrate to Australia. (And conversely when the mother in Canada receives her permanent residency she would be able to apply to sponsor her mother if she meets the financial requirements).

With respect to the Canadian immigration process, here is some information on the refugee claim process:

And on sponsoring once you have become a permanent resident:

Regards XXXXX XXXXX wishes.
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