Tia's Advice: Contacting IRCC

UVic Global Community Newsletter: January 22, 2018

Tia's Advice is a section of the UVic Global Community Newsletter that includes valuable information and important dates for undergraduate and graduate international students in the following categories: degree-seeking, incoming exchange and incoming study abroad/visiting.

How can I contact IRCC?

It is very likely that, at some point during your international student experience, you will have questions about your temporary resident status in Canada.

The first thing to do whenever you have these questions is to consult the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) website, where you will find information, instructions, application forms and answers to many frequently asked questions.

If you need assistance navigating the IRCC website, please visit or contact the International Student Centre (ISC).

Sometimes, even after consulting the IRCC website, and visiting or contacting the ISC, it is necessary to contact IRCC directly.

As you may already know, this can be challenging. Case processing centres and other IRCC offices inside Canada are not open to the public. The same is true for most visa offices outside Canada.

Even so, it IS possible to contact IRCC. Consider the options below and choose the most effective strategy for your situation.

When communicating with IRCC, it is important to clearly explain your question and provide all relevant details. Otherwise, you may receive information that is not accurate.

Client Support Centre

The Client Support Centre is an option when you are inside Canada.

Client Support Centre agents are available Monday to Friday, between 8:00am and 4:00pm local time. They are not available on weekends or statutory holidays.

The best times to try contacting an agent are promptly at 8:00am or between 3:00pm and 4:00pm.

Dial 1-888-242-2100. After the recorded introduction, you will be asked to choose a menu option. Choose 3 and then 4 and then 0.

When the Client Support Centre is experiencing a high volume of calls and no agents are available, your call will be disconnected. You will not be put on hold to wait for the next available agent. The best strategy is to keep dialing over and over again until you get through to an agent.

Always write down the date and time you called, the agent's name and identification number and the exact information they provide.

Web Form

Visit the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) website to:

  • ask about a submitted application that has passed the normal processing times
  • update or provide more information about a submited application
  • report a technical problem
  • give feedback on IRCC services

If you experience a technical problem while you are inside your IRCC account, it is better to use the "Report a Technical Issue" button at the top of your screen rather than the IRCC Web Form.

Emails

There is an email address that can be used for questions about temporary resident visa (TRV) applications submitted within Canada: CPC-CTD-Ottawa@cic.gc.ca.

Include the following information:

  • surname and given names exactly as they appears on your passport
  • date of birth
  • country of birth
  • UCI or Client ID which appears on your study permit, work permit or visitor record
  • date your application was submitted
  • application number, if applicable
  • others details that are relevant to your situation

Most visa offices located outside Canada have a general email address, but this is not a reliable or recommended option for contacting IRCC.

How can I get more help?

What if you still have questions after consulting the IRCC website, visiting or contacting the ISC and contacting IRCC directly?

Visa Application Centres

Visa application centres (VACs) are an excellent resource when you are outside Canada.

Managed by private companies or international organizations, VACs have been authorized by IRCC to provide the following services for a fee:

  • answer questions in local languages
  • schedule interviews and provide application photographs and photocopies
  • collect biometrics, if necessary
  • make sure applications are complete
  • transmit application documents and passports to the appropriate visa office
  • track the status of applications
  • return passports and decision documents

Search for the closest VAC and visit their website for contact information.

Authorized Immigration Representatives

Lawyers, paralegals and immigration consultants are allowed to provide immigration advice for a fee, as long as they are members in good standing of the designated body responsible for regulating their profession.

Learn more about using a paid authorized immigration representative.

More helpful information for international students is available on our website. Please visit or contact the International Student Centre (ISC) if you can't find answers to your questions.

Important Dates

January 22: Change of coverage deadline for the UVSS Health and Dental Plan.*

January 31: Change of coverage deadline for the GSS Health and Dental Plan.*

January 31: Last day for paying second term tuition fees without penalty.**

February 2: Groundhog Day.

February 6: Last day for 50% reduction of tuition fees if you drop second term courses. Students must pay 100% of tuition fees for courses dropped after this date. DO NOT assume the instructor will drop you from a course if you do not attend classes. You are responsible for your own registration.**

February 12: Family Day. This is a statutory holiday, so classes will be cancelled and UVic services will be closed.

February 13 - 16: Reading Break. Classes will be cancelled for all Faculties but UVic services will be open.

February 14: Valentine's Day.

February 15: National Flag of Canada Day.

February 15: Deadline for graduate degree-seeking students who complete their program of study during second term to apply to graduate for spring convocation.

February 16: The preliminary exam timetable for second term exams will be available. Travel plans should be made AFTER the final exam timetable has been posted, because the preliminary exam schedule may change.

February 26: The final exam timetable for second term exams will be available.

February 28: Last day for withdrawing from second term and full year courses without penalty of failure.

* Incoming exchange students are not automatically enrolled for the UVSS or GSS Health and Dental Plans but may be eligible to opt in during the change of coverage period if they choose to purchase a UVSS or GSS membership package. We strongly recommend this option for students who do not already have extended health and dental insurance.

** Incoming exchange students do not pay tuition fees to UVic.

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