Common Reasons for Canadian Visa Refusal

It’s frustrating to be denied a Canadian visitor, study or work visa, especially if you don’t know the reasons for the denial. Immigration Refugee Citizenship Canada (IRCC) provides a letter explaining why your visa was refused; however, often the reasons listed do not clearly explain why.

canada visa refusal reasons

If the recent refusal has put a damper on your Canadian travel, work or study plans, don’t worry, after a visa denial there are a few steps you can take to obtain a Canadian visa.

Sample Canada visa refusal letter:

It is important to distinguish between a denial and a chargeback: A denial will occur as a result of failing to prove finances, intent, failing to provide supporting documents, failing to meet health, safety, or criminal admissibility standards. 

A return, on the other hand, can be the result of missing documents/incorrectly filled out application or forgetting to sign the forms. Also, if the program you have applied for is subject to a quota, your application may be returned to you if the quota is reached. 

However, if your application was returned due to missing information, you can simply correct these errors and reapply.

Reasons for Canada visa refusal

If a visa is denied, you can follow the typical protocol of reviewing the reasons for the denial, correcting any errors, and providing any additional information that may be relevant to the case before reapplying. 

If you are sure that nothing was missing from your initial application and that the visa officer made a mistake, you can appeal or request reconsideration. In such cases, you may want to discuss the matter with an immigration consultant. 

Below we have listed the 20 most common reasons for rejection and how to reapply by type of application.

Canadian Student Visa Rejection Reasons

Canadian study permit/study visa applications are often rejected for failure to demonstrate adequate financial resources, proof of intent to leave Canada after program completion, or lack of travel history.

Other common reasons why student visas are refused are the fact that the IRCC may question your program of study or your letter of acceptance. 

If the visa officer who reviewed your case does not see a connection between your program of study and your educational or employment history, he or she may be inclined to deny your application.

Common Reasons for Work Visa Rejection

In addition to common reasons for rejection such as not showing your intention to leave Canada before the end of your authorized stay, one important thing to keep in mind regarding work visas is that you must provide proof of your ability to perform the job for which you are hired.

20 common reasons for a visa denial

There are different reasons why an application is rejected based on the specific requirements of each type of visa.

1. Proof of Funds: You must show that you have sufficient funds for your travel and stay in Canada. The amount varies depending on the number of people accompanying you and the length of your trip.

2. Source of income: The Canadian government verifies how you accumulated the submitted funds.

3. Travel history: Depending on your nationality, if you have not traveled anywhere outside of your home country before, your application is likely to be weaker compared to others who have traveled consistently.

4. Lack of job prospects in your home country: If you come from a country where wages are much lower than Canada, the IRCC is likely to doubt that you will return after your visit or study and will consider this type of application visa is risky.

5. Failing to provide adequate and accurate supporting documents: Even when not clearly required in your application checklist, there are a number of supporting documents you should include to increase the chances of your application being successful.

6. Current employment status: Depending on your visa application, the lack of employment could affect your chances of success in the visa application.

7. Family ties with your country of origin: Not having direct relatives in your country of origin can lead to rejection.

8. Length of stay: Persons who state on the application that they wish to stay for a long period generally require significant financial funds.

9. Real purpose of the visit: When there was not a sufficiently good explanation of the reason for the trip, the authority could deny entry to the country.

10. Not explaining the purpose of the trip: When you apply for a visa, it is very important to make clear your reasons for applying and how long you plan to stay in the country.

11. Personal Assets: Lacking assets such as a home, car, or business may affect your ability to prove ties to your home country.

12. Financial situation of the host in Canada: The lack of supporting documentation from the Canadian host may also be the reason for the rejection of your visa application.

13. Inauthentic Appearing Documents: If your document appears to be inauthentic, not only will your application be rejected, but you will have trouble reapplying due to lack of credibility. 

Be sure not to hire unlicensed representatives (typically those offering visa services in your home country).

14. History of overstaying or being deported in Canada or another country: Canada uses a global case management system and shares information with most countries in the world. 

If you have overstayed your visa in Canada or any other country, you will have less chance of approval. However, depending on the case, it is still possible to get an approved visa.

15. Illegal status in the country of residence: If you live in any country illegally, Canada most likely does not believe that you will comply with Canadian laws and regulations.

16. Failure to comply with international security regulations, such as in cases where the applicant has a criminal record: Depending on the crime or its length of time, you may still be able to get to Canada.

17. Failure to meet health standards: Depending on the country of origin, you may be required to undergo a medical examination before a decision is made on your application. 

Serious health conditions that may be a danger to others or a burden to Canadian taxpayers may lead to a visa denial.

18. The immigration authority has doubts regarding the intention of the applicant or his application: In your application you must convince the official that your intentions are genuine.

19. Misleading – Providing false or misleading information is called misrepresentation. Having misrepresented information to the Canadian immigration authority can be grounds for denial and also a ban on reapplying.

20. Human rights violations: If you previously served in the military of a country that participated in war crimes, this may be grounds for rejection.

The laws that cover the refusal of Canadian visas are usually quite complicated. It is highly recommended that you speak with an experienced immigration consultant who can provide you with the right advice and support for your case.

How to reapply for a visa after a refusal?

Reapplying for a refused visa can be overwhelming, but having the correct information on hand can greatly simplify the process. 

The steps to take in your new application will vary depending on the type of visa you need. No one wants to be turned down more than once as it can greatly affect any future visa applications.

In most cases, working with an immigration consultant or visa specialist leads to higher chances of approval.

If you have previously been denied a visa to Canada, you can apply again without waiting; however, if you apply with the same information you may not get the result you are looking for. 

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