published on 8 January 2020 @ 2:58 pm · COMMENT
Today, January 8th 2020, Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) issued another round of invitations to apply for permanent residence under the Express Entry system. This is the first draw of the 2020 year. IRCC issued a total of 3,400 invitations. The minimum score selected in today’s draw was 473, an increase of four points from the previous draw on held on December 19th 2019.
The Express Entry program continues to attract skilled candidates, with a total of 138,955 candidates in the pool as of January 6th 2020. Of that total, 19,356 candidates had a Comprehensive Ranking System score of 451 or higher. Given the number of high-skilled candidates in the pool, we anticipate that selection will remain competitive.
Updated Cost Threshold for Assessing Medical Inadmissibility
On January 2, 2020, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada updated the annual cost threshold utilized to assess whether an applicant is inadmissible to Canada on health grounds.
Pursuant to Section 38(1)(c) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (“IRPA”), a foreign national is inadmissible to Canada if their medical condition might reasonably be expected to cause excessive demand on health or social services. “Excessive demand” is defined by Section 1(1) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations as a demand on health or social services for which the anticipated costs would likely exceed average Canadian per capita health and social service costs over a period of five (5) consecutive years immediately following the medical examination, unless there is evidence that significant cost are likely to be incurred beyond five (5) years, in which case the period is no more than ten (10) consecutive years.
However, on June 1, 2018, the Temporary Public Policy Regarding Excessive Demand on Health and Social Services was established, which allows officers to exempt individuals who meet the specific eligibility criteria set out by the Minister from Section 38(1)(c) of the IRPA. In reviewing the policy on excessive demand, IRCC noted that the previous medical assessment of applicants included an assessment of the costs for services that many saw as critical for promoting inclusion, such as special education, social and vocational rehabilitation services, and personal support services. IRCC further noted that previous policy also prevented the arrival of immigrants with health condition that cost only a small amount more than the average Canadian per capita cost. As a result, the Minister established this temporary public policy, which states that officers may grant an exemption from Section 38(1)(c) of the IRPA to foreign nationals who would otherwise have been found inadmissible under this section if the costs of the health and social services that would be required to treat the foreign national’s health condition are less than three times the average Canadian per capita health and social services costs over the five (5) year period (or ten (10) year period, if applicable).
In light of the policies regarding the assessment of medical admissibility of foreign nationals, the average Canadian per capita health and social services costs plays a significant role in determining who will be barred from entering Canada on health grounds. In 2019, the average Canadian per capita health and social services cost was $6,830, making the threshold under the temporary public policy $20,517. On January 2, 2020, this average cost was increased to $7,068, making the threshold under the policy $21,204.
This updated average Canadian per capita health and social services costs, together with the ongoing application of the temporary public policy regarding excessive demand, will continue to facilitate the entry of foreign nationals who would otherwise be considered inadmissible to Canada on heath grounds.
For more information about Canadian immigration, please contact our office.