Refugee Protection Division: Resumption of in-person hearings

​​​The Refugee Protection Division (RPD) has issued a Practice Notice on the resumption of in-person hearings.

The easing of COVID-19 restrictions means that the RPD can start to resume some operations at Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (IRB) offices. This Practice Notice reflects the results of internal and external consultations, including with stakeholders, on measures to provide flexibility in response to the evolving COVID-19 pandemic.

The RPD will re-start in-person hearings in Vancouver during the week of July 20, 2020, and plans to restart in-person hearings at all other IRB locations the week of August 3, 2020. The Board will be working at a reduced capacity to respect building occupancy reductions and physical distancing. RPD hearings postponed due to COVID-19 measures are now being re-scheduled.

In order to facilitate the resumption of hearings, the RPD has enhanced its use of Canada Post's epost Connect™ and can now receive and send documents electronically with registered users. The RPD will also accept all documents from parties received by email and fax as set out in the Practice Notice. Please be aware, that mail rooms will operate on a reduced capacity to respect physical distancing requirements.

Counsel, claimants, designated representatives and Minister's counsel should refer to the Practice Notice for more information.

The health and safety of IRB employees and those who appear before the Board is paramount. The Board will move carefully and deliberately as it gradually increases access to work sites.​