How to file a permanent resident application within 5 days after ITA
The 2 weeks long delay after having Ontario provincial nomination provided me enough time to find useful info about the post ITA (invitation to apply) application and I started to collect the necessary documents to support my visa application. I found a great forum thread on Canadavisa which listed some essential info about the post ITA process.
Here are the steps which I performed beforehand I got the ITA:
- I arranged a medical examination at Kútvölgyi Clinic because both IRCC approved panel doctors in Hungary work in this hospital. Since only 2 doctors conduct all medical check-ups necessary for Australian and Canadian immigration I got my scheduled appointment 3 weeks later to my initial phone call.
- I had to re-scan all passports (5 different ones because the expired passports are also necessary to cover the requested 10 years long period), birth certificates, marriage certificate, higher educational degrees and other supporting documents due to size limitation regulations. (max 2 MB / file)
- I spent a whole day to list all our foreign travels happened in the last 10 years. It was not an easy task because I never recorded the departure and arrival date of our travels so I had to rely on my memory but our extensive photo collection helped a lot.
- I acquired police certificates for me and my wife and I had to translate it into English with an official translating agency. I was satisfied with the Hungarian “Ügyfélkapu” system because police certificates are free of charge and can be requested through your Ügyfélkapu account without visiting any office in person and I got both certificates a short week after the request. In the USA for instance more than 12 week needed for the FBI to provide info about your criminal records. Of course it is a bigger country but I still like the Hungarian process.
- I asked for an updated proof of funds certificate and employment certificate for the last 10 years. I was in a convenient situation because both my employment certificate and my proof of funds had been already written for Ontario Provincial Nomination therefore only a quick update was necessary.
Collecting the documents beforehand the ITA helped me to prepare everything for placing my e-application very quickly.
In the PR application process
After being in the dark for 11 months as we were waiting for provincial nomination, the expected 6 months waiting period for permanent residency didn’t look bad at all. (It is promised on IRCC website that 80% of the PR applications are assessed within 6 months.)
I filed my application in early November 2016, and before Christmas I passed the Medcheck phase according to a status change in the application system.
In late December Timka wanted to start some pre-arrival course therefore she needed her UCI number from IRCC. To get this number I sent an e-mail requesting the UCI and within 3 days the Vienna Visa Office (VO or VVO) answered in a short e-mail. From that message I realized that our case had been already transferred to VVO probably in December.
After that nothing happened for a long time, I didn’t get any additional information or document request from IRCC. To get some clarity I joined again to a Canadavisa forum where my fellow applicants shared utterly useful info about their PR application timeline and thanks to this info I was able to predict my timeline pretty exactly.
Some applicants get info about the expected lenght of their process on websites like https://myimmitracker.com/. I didn’t find it useful because after the Medcheck phase local visa offices handle the rest of the PR process and there is huge difference in the length of different applications’ timeline. For instance there was a period around the 3-4th month when some fellow applicants started to report progress regarding their application but my case didn’t move a bit. Having this info made me rather anxious and dispirited.
In the meantime I found some useful assignment for myself to kill my free time and to raise my professional profile so in January I started PMI-PMP (project management studies). Later I will post some info about my PMP studies.
And finally on 19th April I got my golden email from Vienna Visa Office that my application has reached the last phase and I should send the printed photos of all applicants to the VO. The wording of the request was not clear enough (at least for me) therefore I asked some clarification from the VO but they have not replied at all.
After a week or so I didn’t wait more for the answer of the VO and I sent my letter with the photos and in 12th May I eventually got the message that we have officially become permanent residents of Canada.
It was a sunny Friday :] and on Monday the printed IMM-5688 documents are landed in our mailbox. Since Hungary is a visa exempt country we didn’t get visa counterfoil in our passports but we got the Confirmation of Permanent Residency documents (IMM-5688) which are necessary to have in a printed form to land in Canada.
In retrospect the PR process was seamless despite the fact that the IRCC avoided any form of communication during the assessment of my application. The whole PR application process took 6 months as it was predicted by IRCC which is a remarkable improvement compared to the pre-Express Entry system where applicants sent comprehensive, printed forms and supporting documents for IRCC and it took 1,5-2 years to assess the paper based PR applications.