Question: I arrived in Brampton five years ago as a contract worker in Canada. My visa expired eventually, and along the way, I met a Canadian woman whom I later married. I lodged a new visa application through the help of an immigration law firm, but this was many years ago and with no clear results up to now. I tried to get in touch with Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) and ask them about the status of my application, but I was surprised when they told me that my papers were in Manila and that I should get in touch with the embassy there. Until now, I don’t understand why my application ended up in the Philippines when I was in Canada at the time of my application. I am still in Canada right now and have never left. I’m also having second thoughts about asking for help, for fear that Immigration Canada might take it against me. What should I do? Is there any basis for my worries about hiring a professional immigration lawyer?
Answer: The fact that you aren’t sure about your visa application only means that you need to hire a Canadian immigration lawyer to help you through the process. No, Citizenship and Immigration Canada will not take it negatively that you are seeking professional assistance. They will even be happy to deal with people who already know the system very well, and do not need to be given detailed instructions or information. Before anything though, what you’d like to do is inquire from Immigration Canada about the real status of your application. This is the only way to provide answers to all your questions, especially about why your papers ended up in Manila when you filed your application in Canada. Unless you were under removal proceedings, it is highly improbable that this would happen. Also, given the number of years your application has been pending, it is likely that you had been scheduled for an interview and missed it without your knowledge. Your confusion is understandable because it is not easy to piece this puzzle together – with the limited amount of information you have given regarding your case. If anything, all those unanswered questions should only serve as a reason for you to contact a professional immigration to Canada lawyer right away, so the necessary steps can be taken at the soonest time.