Canadian Citizenship Fraud Allegedly Perpetrated By Immigration Consultants

As reported by Joe Friesen of the Globe and Mail, approximately 300 applications for Canadian citizenship directed to a single address in Mississauga, Ontario are subject of an RCMP Investigation. The suspicion is that applicants who live abroad may have retained the services of  unscrupulous Immigration Consultants to file these applications naming a fake address.

Fradulent Immigration Consultants Cases On The Rise

In order to qualify for Canadian Citizenship, applicants are generally required to live in Canada for three years of the four years proceeding the application. As part of the application process, applicants are required to enter their Canadian address on the Canadian citizenship application form and have a Canadian address as part of proof of their Canadian residency.

Immigration Consultants Filing Fraudulent Applications for Financial Gain

The address under investigation is located at Palestine House in Mississauga, a language and settlement service centre for Arab and Palestinian immigrants. But apparently no one really lives at this location.

This case illustrates a chronic problem in the immigration and citizenship industry: unscrupulous immigration consultants filing fraudulent applications for financial gain. In this case, it is suspected that overseas applicants who never had a chance for Canadian citizenship may have hired immigration consultants to get them Canadian citizenship in the hopes of making higher wages abroad. Holding Canadian passports gives such workers a leg-up in the pay scale in places like Dubai.

The RCMP has no idea how many of these applicants actually obtained Canadian citizenship. But Citizenship Judges have been notified about the problem.

It is clear that 300 people do not live at the Palestinian House. Therefore 300 potential citizenship applicants may be roaming the world with Canadian passports who have no business calling themselves citizens. It is time that the Federal Government invest more resources in catching these wayward immigration consultants who are responsible for perpetrating such fraud.

Beware When Working With Immigration Consultants

One way to stop it is for the public themselves to be better educated on who can or cannot call themselves immigration consultants or immigration lawyers. Firstly, immigration consultants now have to be licensed by the Canadian Society of Immigration Consultants (CSIC). There is a list of licensed members. And even before you inquire about a consultants CSIC membership, make sure they are themselves Canadian citizens or Canadian Permanent Residents. If not, they have no standing to file an application on behalf of anyone for a fee.

Of course, Canadian lawyers can represent applicants as well. Again make sure such lawyers are licensed by their provincial governing body: in Ontario it’s the Law Society of Upper Canada (LSUC).

Speak to a Licensed Immigration Lawyer

As they say “buyer beware” is the best defence against fraud. Are you looking for a licensed Canadian immigration lawyer to represent you? Book your consultation online now, we can help.

Michael Niren

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

  • MAR

    Is withholding information like application file number by my immigration consultant really a practice in exchange for the service? In addition, if the consultancy firm has changed it’s name but the consultant is the same person, is the contract an applicant signed prior to that change still valid? Would appreciate your response as soon as you can. Thank you.

    • Immigration Lawyers

      Hi Mar,
      I’m sorry to hear of your situation. What company are you currently working with? Unfortunately we can not give legal advice over social media but we can help you set up a consultation with one of our immigration lawyers so you may get the best legal advice for your situation with another firm.

  • Nice post on fraud consultant services for Canada immigration.

  • Path


    When I applied for Canadian Permanent Residence, I put down the wrong birthday for my mom by mistake. My brother, replying on my application information, also put down the wrong birthday for her again for his PR application. Now, we wish to sponsor her to Canada but her birth certificate indicates a different birthday than what our applications said. How can I fix this problem? I called CIC and they told us to include an explanation letter in our sponsorship application. What does this mean? Please help.

    Thank you.

    • Dear Path,

      When you make submissions for your sponsorship application through an immigration lawyer, the immigration lawyer will prepare a letter addressed to Immigration not only to convince why your sponsorship application should be apporved but also to explain why her birthday does not match the date entered on your PR application.

      Thank you.

  • I want to go back to my home town and the only way I can go home is by revoking my Canadian citizenship… any advice?

    • Dear Tel Cit,

      In order to renounce your citizenship, you must prove that you are or that you will become a citizen of a country other than Canada if your application to renounce is approved, not live in Canada, be at least 18 years old, and not be a threat to Canada’s security or part of a pattern of criminal activity.

      Hope this helps.

  • Sharon Serebro

    I was married to a man who committed fraud on his immigration to Canada (before meeting me). Now, he is a citizen of Canada. I am a citizen of Canada as well.But, I would like to revoke my citizenship. I married him and he sponsored me and our daughter.
    I want to go back to my home town and the only way I can go home is by revoking my Canadian citizenship… any advice?

    Please help us!

    • Dear Sharon,

      You may renounce your citizenship by making an application for “Application to Renounce Canadian Citizenship (Form CIT 0302).” To qualify, you must not reside in Canada, be a citizen of a country other than Canada, or show that you will become a citizen of a country other than Canada, if your application to renounce is accepted, not be a threat to Canada’s security, and be 18 years of age or older.

      Your supporting documents include a birth certificate, evidence that establishes your Canadian citizenship, evidence that establishes you are or will become a citizen of a country other than Canada and evidence that you live outside Canada.

      Hope this helps.

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