Federal Court - Writ of Mandamus
In cases where the wait for a decision from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has faced a lengthy and unreasonable delay – this is where it is worth retaining the legal services of a law firm!
A Canadian Immigration lawyer will endorse your case before the Federal Court of Canada by requesting a judge to review your application and argue through legal submission work. This will pressure IRCC to finalize your file.
In legal terminology, it is sometimes helpful to file a Writ of Mandamus in Federal Court to ask the Court to compel IRCC to act on a file.
Given the stress on the Canadian immigration system from the backlogs caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as the increased annual intake targets from the Canadian government, it is unfortunately becoming more common that individuals and companies find their applications taking longer than the published processing times by months and in some cases years.
While it is not advisable to prematurely file a Writ of Mandamus simply because the processing time has passed by a small amount of time, in the case where more than a year has passed, it is absolutely a useful tool that applicants can use to move along an application that has otherwise stalled in processing.
A writ of mandamus is essentially a command from the Federal Court to a public authority to execute a duty that they are obligated by law to complete. In the case of an immigration matter, it is a judicial remedy that requests the Federal Court to order IRCC to issue a decision within a specified period of time.
This is applicable to all kinds of applications, including but not limited to permanent residence, temporary residence, citizenship and other applications. This has become ever more necessary during a period of time, when IRCC is experiencing unprecedented delays and is unable to process applications normally or even provide applicants with accurate processing times.
Rather than allow your life or employment opportunity in Canada to remain on hold during this administrative and bureaucratic nightmare, this is the mechanism to take back control of the processing times.
It should be pointed out that a Writ of Mandamus should be exercised in the most extreme situations when there is not only a public duty to act owed to the applicant, but also prior demands for performance of that duty and a reasonable time to comply with the demand. In addition, before seeking a Writ of Mandamus, it is important that you make sure the application was filed properly and IRCC has no reasonable reason to delay its processing.
We have seen many of these matters that fall into this category achieve resolution of the application when all of the above criteria have been met.