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The Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (IRB) is Canada's largest independent administrative tribunal. It is responsible for making well-reasoned decisions on immigration and refugee matters, efficiently, fairly and in accordance with the law.
The IRB decides, among other responsibilities, who needs refugee protection among the thousands of claimants who come to Canada annually.
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has the overall responsibility for immigration and refugee matters. IRCC determines claims for refugee protection made abroad at Canadian embassies and consulates. It is responsible for selecting immigrants, issuing visitors' visas, and granting citizenship. It is also IRCC that determines the eligibility of all refugee protection claims made in Canada and refers eligible claims to the IRB for a decision.
The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) is responsible for carrying out enforcement functions related to immigration and refugee matters. These include detention, removals, investigations, and intelligence and immigration control functions overseas.
The IRB reports to Parliament through the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, but the IRB remains independent from IRCC and the Minister.
All IRB decisions have an impact on the lives and security of the individuals appearing before the IRB. They contribute to the security of Canadians, the integrity of Canada's immigration and refugee systems, and the strength and diversity of our nation. Refugees and immigrants have always been part of Canadian history and will continue to help shape our future.
The Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada is an independent tribunal established by the Parliament of Canada. Our mission, on behalf of Canadians, is to resolve immigration and refugee cases efficiently, fairly and in accordance with the law.
We will excel in everything we do and will deal simply, quickly and fairly with everyone. Through innovation, we will be a leading edge administrative tribunal and a creative partner in building the future of the Canadian immigration system.
Values and ethics
IAD - Immigration Appeal Division
ID - Immigration Division
RAD - Refugee Appeal Division
RPD - Refugee Protection Division
Refugee Protection Division
The Refugee Protection Division (RPD) hears and decides claims for refugee protection made in Canada in keeping with the international Geneva Convention, as implemented through the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act.
A claim for refugee protection can be made in Canada by speaking to an officer from the CBSA at any port of entry upon arrival in Canada, or to an officer from either the IRCC or the CBSA at an inland office. The officer decides whether the claim is eligible to be referred to the IRB. If the claim is eligible, it is referred to the RPD to start the refugee protection process.
Refugee Appeal Division
The Refugee Appeal Division (RAD) decides appeals from decisions of the RPD to allow or reject claims for refugee protection.
The RAD may decide to confirm or to change the RPD’s decision. It may also decide to send the case back to the RPD to hear it again, giving the directions to the RPD that it considers appropriate.
At the request of the CBSA or the IRCC, the Immigration Division (ID), conducts admissibility hearings for foreign nationals or permanent residents believed to be inadmissible to, or removable from Canada under the law.
The ID also conducts detention reviews for foreign nationals or permanent residents detained by the CBSA to review the reasons for detention.
Detention reviews are held:
- Within 48 hours of the start of detention or without delay afterwards.
- Then, within 7 days of that first review.
- After that, the ID reviews the grounds for detention at least once every 30 days until the person is either released or removed from Canada.
Immigration Appeal Division
The Immigration Appeal Division (IAD) of the IRB hears appeals on immigration-related matters. There are several types of appeals that are heard by the IAD:
- Appeals of family class sponsorship applications refused by IRCC officials.
- Appeals of removal orders made against permanent residents, protected persons, and holders of permanent resident visas.
- Appeals by permanent residents who have been found by an IRCC official outside of Canada not to have fulfilled their residency obligation.
- Appeals by the Minister of Public Safety of decisions where the ID made a decision that a person is not inadmissible.
Executive Director and Chief Financial Officer (CFO)
Deputy Chairperson of the RPD
Deputy Chairperson of the ID
Deputy Chairperson of the IAD
Deputy Chairperson of the RAD