Have you submitted your application yet?” said the blushing Natalie, who was intently looking at the webcam of her laptop, directly facing her now husband, Raphael. They got married two months ago when Natalie went to the Philippines to wed Raphael, who is a native of Cebu. The two met when they were introduced by a common friend through a popular social media app.
“Not yet, my love. But I can finish filling up the immigration forms tomorrow.” Raphael remarked, trying to hold back the eagerness in his voice with the thought of being invited to come live with his now wife, Natalie, in Canada. Two of his friends had married a foreigner as a spouse three years ago. Raphael saw that as a stroke of luck for his friends. He wanted the same for himself but is not keen on the idea of living and working in another country.
Natalie lives in Scarborough, Canada and works as a Marketing Advertiser. She travels a lot as a hobby and as a way to give herself a break, given the load of work her company requires from her. Natalie has gone to European countries, and lately, she had explored a few Asian countries that included the Philippines. She planned her itinerary to the Philippines to meet her husband-to-be and be wed two months ago. Natalie went back to Canada a week after the ceremony and left some instructions to Raphael regarding a spousal sponsorship application.
Unbeknownst to Natalie, Raphael was involved in a trouble and was convicted about five years ago. He was still working in another country under a contract when the incident happened. Raphael was subsequently terminated from work and was repatriated after serving one year sentence in jail. He did not take this lightly from his pool of experiences, but he decided to just move on, nevertheless. He was able to find another job in the Philippines and swore to the core never to set foot in another country again. Not again, until he met Natalie. So harsh was his promise to himself that he was unwilling to refute, but he yielded powerless as he fell deeply in love with Natalie.
It has been five months since Raphael had submitted his application papers for a spousal sponsorship to the visa office in Manila. Similarly, he hadn’t heard from Natalie for two days now and this made him anxious. He dropped several missed calls to Natalie’s social media account this morning. None of his calls were returned, which Raphael find odd.
Natalie’s hands were still trembling as she repeatedly scrolled her eyes through the message stated in the letter sent by the immigration office. According to the letter, the applicant, Raphael, was found to 1) have failed to disclose his work experience in another country, and 2) was convicted in another country. Cited reasons were enough to merit a misrepresentation and an inadmissibility to Canada. In other words, the application for her spousal sponsorship was bound to be refused.
The expense of omitting facts in Canada is pricey as it is tantamount to lying. A discovery of an excluded fact in an application is subject to further scrutiny. The fact withheld must be assessed if it is a material fact, or that which is deemed significant where an omission of it may cause to mislead the officer and arrive at a wrong decision. Whether directly or directly, this act is dangerous and hence, a ground for misrepresentation. The penalty for misrepresentation is a five-years ban from entering Canada.
Misrepresentation is defined in the federal legislation for immigration, referred to as the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA) section 40, to wit:
40 (1) A permanent resident or a foreign national is inadmissible for misrepresentation
(a) for directly or indirectly misrepresenting or withholding material facts relating to a relevant matter that induces or could induce an error in the administration of this Act;
(b) for being or having been sponsored by a person who is determined to be inadmissible for misrepresentation;
This is further outlined in IRPA section 127, to wit:
127 No person shall knowingly
(a) directly or indirectly misrepresent or withhold material facts relating to a relevant matter that induces or could induce an error in the administration of this Act;
(b) communicate, directly or indirectly, by any means, false or misleading information or declarations with intent to induce or deter immigration to Canada;
In instances where an omission may be a result of an oversight or a minor error, the applicant may receive a request for clarification from the officer. This is done to grant the applicant the right to explain the issue, and hence, may not result to an outright refusal. Withholding relevant and material facts to subscribe to federal requirements in an application to Canada, on the other hand, would never qualify for a valid reason.
In the case of Raphael, had his work experience in another country not discovered, the officer may have arrived at a wrong decision. This act clearly constitutes a deceit on the part of the applicant against the application. Worse to say in his case, Raphael had committed a case of misrepresentation and — is criminally inadmissible to Canada. A deadly duo.
Reposted from Baybayin News.