While waiting for her permanent residency card, Mariel found out some terrible news from back home. Her mother passed away and the funeral was planned five days later in Manilla. As she had no travel documents, Mariel was terrified – what would she do? Would she miss her own mother’s funeral?
She had to wait a long time to get through to the government call centre and could not get a clear answer as to whether she would be able to re-enter Canada once she had left. The official immigration website that she was reading was confusing and she was not able to decide what to do next. Then she connected with an immigration lawyer who was able to help. “It was such a relief to have someone knowledgeable and trained to handle this for me” said Mariel after the lawyer was able to help her file for an urgent visa in Manilla. In the end, Mariel was able to travel and spend some time with her family during this trying situation.
This story is based on a real situation and is dramatized in a recent Canadian Bar Association video. This situation highlights a number of real aspect that come into play in many immigration matters. It is important to get good advice so that decisions can be made quickly without causing unintended long term consequences.