Implied Status - what is it and how does it work?

Published July 26, 2016

Sections 183(5), 186(u) and 189 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations ("IRPR") outline the basis and parameters of implied status. 

A temporary resident of Canada must apply to extend or renew their status in Canada before it expires. Accordingly, if a temporary resident has applied for an extension before their status or permit expires, that individual's status as a temporary resident is extended by law until a decision is made by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) on their application. The individual who has made such an application is therefore considered to have "implied status" as a temporary resident, until a decision is made.

Under implied status:

  • an individual originally in Canada on a study permit will have the right to continue studying under the same conditions outlined in his or her study permit, until a decision is made, and
  •  an individual originally in Canada on a work permit will have the right to continue working under the same conditions outlined in his or her work permit, until a decision is made.

Generally (with some limited exceptions), an individual loses implied status once he or she leaves Canada.

On June 13, 2016, IRCC issued a program delivery update which clarified its policy regarding implied status.

In particular, the policy update indicates that individuals with implied status who leave Canada, may re-enter Canada as a temporary resident only if they are from a visa-exempt country (as per Section 190 of IRPR), or on a multiple entry visa. These individuals cannot resume work or study in Canada until their application to extend or renew their status has been decided. Individuals who cannot resume work must prove they have sufficient financial support until their application is finalized.

However, IRCC indicates that there is an exception to the above guidelines. Those from from visa-requiring countries with implied status can re-enter Canada without applying for a new visa only if they have travelled solely to United States or St. Pierre and Miquelon. These individuals will still be required to apply for a new work permit or study permit before engaging in work or studies, but will not have to apply for a new visa to enter Canada. 

Temporary residents from visa-requiring countries travelling anywhere else must apply for a new visa to re-enter Canada, unless they have a valid multiple-entry visa at the time they re-enter Canada. 

IRCC emphasizes the importance of temporary residents presenting documentation and proof of their application for an extension of their temporary status at the port of entry.

The full policy guideline can be found at: http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/resources/tools/temp/visa/validity/implied.asp