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Can a Refugee Return to the Country of Persecution While Their Application is in Process?

By Juliet Montes

In F.F., et al v. Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Frederick Law & Company demonstrated that a sponsored refugee can return to the country of persecution while their application is in process.

In this matter, an organization in Canada had sponsored the clients to come to Canada because the clients feared for their lives in their home country.  They were religious minorities.

The clients fled from their home country to another country, as a result of war and human rights violations.  But healthcare was too costly in the new country.  One of the clients needed medical care and therefore they returned to their home country a number of times to receive medical treatment.  While there, they feared for their lives.

The immigration officer of the Canadian Embassy in the new country refused the clients’ refugee applications because the clients returned to their home country a number of times.  The immigration officer stated they didn’t have “a well-founded fear of persecution” in their home country meaning they didn’t have a genuine fear for their lives.

Frederick Law & Company sought leave for judicial review before the Federal Court of Canada of the immigration officer’s decision.  Frederick Law & Company demonstrated what the immigration officer did was wrong in this case and the clients were granted refugee protection and were permitted to proceed with their applications of permanent residence in Canada.  Specifically, Frederick Law & Company demonstrated the clients did not intend to live in their home country when they returned to their home country for medical treatment.

If you have been refused by the Government of Canada on your application for refugee protection, please consult us.  We will fight for you and demonstrate that returning to your home country does not eliminate your “well founded fear of persecution”.