Cambridge Immigration, Refugee,

Humanitarian & Compassionate Grounds

A group of people who enter or try to enter Canada in a way that is against the law can be considered an “irregular arrival.” This means certain rules and restrictions apply to them.

Humanitarian and Compassionate Grounds

People who are eligible for any immigration programs in Canada can still apply for permanent residency in the country on Humanitarian and Compassionate category (H&C) grounds. When you apply for permanent residency under (H&C) category, you’re telling the Canadian government that you or your family members are facing insurmountable hardship involving extreme emotional distress, if you stay or return to your home nation.

Understanding the H&C Category

Section 25 of the immigration and Refugee protection Act (IRPA) in Canada is Humanitarian and Compassionate (H&C) Applications. This is a crucial provision in the Act.

The legal criterion states that applicants have to provide solid evidence that they would experience unusual and disproportionate hardship if they leave Canada.

The application is assessed based on the information provided, and the decision will be made based on whether the applicant’s personal circumstances merit H&C consideration. If your application is refused, in certain cases, you can request the Federal Court of Canada to review the decision.

The IRPA also considers economic and cultural establishment such as:
• Stable employment of the applicant
• Sound financial pattern
• The applicant’s involvement in the community through volunteer, community organization or other activities
• Possible hardship in case an application were refused

Who may apply on Humanitarian and Compassionate Grounds?

You can apply for permanent residence from within Canada under the H&C category if you:
• are a foreign national living in Canada
• seeking an exemption from a few requirements of the IRPA to apply for permanent residence within Canada
• believe humanitarian and compassionate grounds justify granting the exemptions you want
• do not qualify for permanent residence from within Canada in any of the following categories:
• Spouse or Common-Law Partner
• Live-in Caregiver
• Temporary Resident Permit Holder
• Protected Person and Convention Refugees
• Caregivers: for children or people with intensive medical needs

You cannot apply for this application if you are already a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident in the country. Also, you may not use this application if you already have a pending H&C application and/or have an outstanding claim.

How to Apply for H&C Admission

If you are already living in Canada, you must submit two forms:
• Form IMM 0008: The general application for immigration to Canada
• Form IMM 5283: Application requesting an exemption under the H&C category

If you live overseas, you must file the forms for any of the three immigration classes: family, economic, or refugee. You must supplement the form with information explaining why humanitarian and compassionate grounds should approve your application.

Once you complete the application package and pay the government processing fee, the application can be submitted. The submission letter should outline all the H& C factors of the applicant.

To avoid the refusal of your application, it is important that you prepare a strong submission letter that outlines outline all the H& C factors. You should also submit persuasive supporting documentation as evidence of your circumstances and intention in support of your Humanitarian and Compassionate application.

How Long does the Application Take to Process?

It may take years to process an application under the H&C category. Applications under the H&C category take around 18-24 months, but it may take longer depending on the applicant’s circumstances. During the H & C process, the applicant stays in Canada and awaits a decision.

Applicants are advised to avoid traveling outside of Canada during the process. This is because you may be called for an interview at the local CIC office and/or to submit additional documentations at any time.

Cambridge Immigration, Refugee,

How to Make a Successful H&C

Cambridge Immigration, Refugee,

Important Factors to Consider

Immigration officers consider all factors in your application before making their decision. Following are three factors they mainly focus on:

The immigration officer considers the hardship you will face if you’re forced to leave Canada. They determine all good reasons to grant the applicant permanent residence in Canada.

Some examples of hardship are:
• Returning to an abusive relationship
• Family violence
• Violence risk in the home country
• Chance of living in poverty
• No access to medical care
• Potential harassment in the home country
• Impact of family and close ones in Canada

Hardship will not be enough to warrant relief on humanitarian and compassionate grounds.

Establishment in Canada
Proving your strong connections in Canada will increase the chances of success of your application. For example:
• The length of your stay in Canada
• Volunteering in Canada
• Your family and friends in Canada
• Education obtained in Canada
• Membership with religious communities
• Employment in Canada
• Taking English learning classes
• Going to school in higher classes

Best Interests of a Child

The office considers the best interests of any child that can be affected if you leave Canada. This can be emotional, physical, and health safety, social, and cultural wellbeing. The child can be your child, grandchildren or any children you have a close relationship with.

If your application is refused within the last 12 months, you can’t apply for permanent residency under H&C grounds, except in the circumstances involving your children or medical conditions posing a risk to life.

What if You are Inadmissible?

Some common reasons for inadmissibility include criminality, misrepresentation, financial reasons, and health grounds. If you or your family members are inadmissible to Canada, you must resolve the inadmissibility before applying for permanent residence. For instance, if you are inadmissible because of a criminal conviction, you can apply for rehabilitation or a record suspension.

Why Seek Professional Immigration Help

The process of applying for H&C is not straightforward, and being approved for a permanent residency on H&C grounds is not easy.

Submitting a strong and persuasive application package is essential for a successful outcome. Working with an immigration firm that specializes in H&C cases can increase the chances of your application approval.

An experienced and knowledgeable immigration officer will make your application stand out and handle your H&C case with increased chances of success.


No case is to big or small. In the matters of immigration, nothing matters more than the firm and the people you choose to represent your interests.