Why was my Canadian tourist visa refused?

Canadian tourist visa refused?

Toronto Star published an article this week about a Peruvian man, Jorge Sanabria, who was scheduled to deliver a keynote speech at Wilfrid Laurier University in June but denied a tourist visa (temporary resident visa) to Canada without any apparent reason.

Regulation 179 is the section of Canada’s Immigration and Refugee Protection Act that allows visa officers to reject applications on the suspicion they might try to stay in Canada beyond their temporary stay. However, no detailed reason for refusal needs to be given and the applicant is notified by a simple little “form letter” with check-mark indicated stating the supposed grounds for refusal.

For example, a common reason is that the applicant has failed to demonstrate that he or she would not leave Canada after their intended visit. Not much help for applicants wondering why they visas were refused.

This regulation does not apply to 53 countries for which citizens can come visit Canada without temporary resident visas, but it does apply to the 145 countries from which citizens need visas to come to Canada.

No statistics are kept on why visas are refused, but one-third of the five million visitors to Canada in 2009 needed temporary resident visas. Of these 1.5 million people, almost 300,000 were refused just for not meeting requirements of Regulation 179.

While there are no official criteria regarding Regulation 179 that would suggest a visitor might stay, there are also no official criteria available that would prove an applicant would leave. So, people planning trips to come to Canada have no real idea whether their applications will be denied or accepted–sometimes even in cases where they have purchased a return ticket home and have a job and family waiting for them in their home country.

Jorge Sanabria had provided the government with his passport, a letter from his employer, a document showing his invitation to speak and information about his family in Peru with his application but was still denied.

Options available when Canadian tourist visa refused

When an immigration application is refused, applicants still have several options available to them including filing an appeal to the Federal Court of Canada. Usually these refusal decisions are made by a single immigration officer who may have made an error in law or fact regarding the application. If such is the case, consider either appealing or even re-applying with more detail about the merits of your case. Don’t give up!

So why was your Canadian tourist visa refused denied? Often there is really no good answer. You are welcome to contact us, Niren and Associates immigration law firm if you’re facing a Canadian tourist visa refusal.



About Michael Niren

Michael is a graduate of Osgoode Hall Law School in Toronto. He is a member of the Law Society of Upper Canada, the Canadian Bar Association’s Citizenship and Immigration Section and the Associate Member of the American Bar Association. Read more

2 thoughts on “Why was my Canadian tourist visa refused?

  1. Mira Freiwat

    Hello Harjinder,

    Thank you for your post. I am glad that you have contacted us because we have helped thousands of clients get their rejected or negative Visa decisions overturned in the past 20 years we’ve been in business. I would NOT recommend that you apply again for a Visa on your own; the more you keep reapplying after a refusal and keep getting refused continuously, the more difficult it will be for even a professional to get you your Visa. Please email me at so that I can gather the information I need from you to apply on your behalf and get you your Visa! MF

  2. Harjinder singh

    Dear sir

    I would like to get information regarding Canadian visitor visa to visit my real sister.
    I went to the U.K. On 24th of February, 2015 and return to India after exactly 2 weeks. After then I applied for b1/b2 U.S. Visa twice and got rejected under section 214 b. Now I am planing to apply for Canadian visitor visa.

    Does U.S refusal matter to apply for canada visa or not ?


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