January 17, 2024

Biometrics 101 for Canadian Immigration: Your Complete Guide

Navigating the intricacies of Canadian immigration can be a multifaceted endeavor, and understanding the requirements for biometric data submission is a crucial aspect of ensuring a smooth application process. This guide explains the mysteries of biometrics in the context of Canadian immigration, providing you with the vital information and insights necessary to successfully fulfill this important step.

Demystifying Biometrics: Understanding the Fundamentals

In the context of Canadian immigration, "biometrics" refers to the collection and storage of your unique physical characteristics, specifically your fingerprints and a digital photograph. These seemingly simple identifiers act as powerful tools for Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) to verify your identity against national databases and enhance overall security measures.

Who Must Engage in Biometric Submission?

If you fall within the age range of 14 and 79 and are seeking either temporary or permanent resident status in Canada, or are claiming asylum, be prepared to undergo fingerprint and photograph capture. This requirement encompasses a broad spectrum of applications, including:

  1. Temporary resident visas
  2. Extensions of current authorization to remain in Canada as a temporary resident
  3. Temporary resident permits
  4. Restoration of temporary resident status
  5. Work permits and renewals
  6. Study permits and renewals
  7. Permanent resident visas
  8. In-Canada asylum claims (no upper age limit)
  9. Overseas refugee resettlement claims

Exemptions to the Norm: When Can You Opt Out?

While most applicants must participate in biometric data collection, a few notable exceptions exist:

  1. Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) holders: If you are visiting Canada as a tourist with an eTA, you are exempt from providing biometrics.
  2. Under 14 or Over 79: The age requirement hinges on the date your application is submitted. If you were under 14 or over 79 at the time of application, the biometric requirement does not apply.

Facilitating the Process: Locating Biometrics Collection Points

Rest assured, submitting biometric data does not involve venturing into remote locations. You can readily access designated "biometrics collection service points," including:

  1. Visa application centres (VACs)
  2. Select U.S. application support centres
  3. Select Service Canada locations
  4. IRCC visa offices (limited availability)
  5. Select ports of entry
  6. Select Global Affairs Canada locations

Financial Considerations: Understanding Processing Fees

Be prepared to incur a processing fee associated with your biometric data submission. The current fees are as follows:

  1. Individual: CAD $85
  2. Family (up to four applicants): CAD $170
  3. Group of performing artists: CAD $255

It is essential to note that this fee applies each time you provide biometric information, unless you are exempt or required to retake them within the context of the same application.

The "1 in 10 Policy": Your Potential Reprieve from Biometrics

Ever heard of the "1 in 10 policy"? This provision offers a temporary respite from the biometric requirement. If you have provided biometrics within the past ten years for a temporary residence application or have a pending permanent residence application, you can skip the scan for your next temporary residence application submitted within those ten years.

Optimizing Your Biometrics Appointment: Essential Tips

Here are some valuable tips to ensure a smooth and successful biometric appointment:

  1. Schedule in advance: To avoid delays, plan your appointment well ahead of time.
  2. Dress appropriately: Avoid light-colored clothing and headgear (unless worn for religious reasons) as they may interfere with the scanning process.
  3. Maintain natural appearance: Refrain from using temporary decorations like henna on your fingers, as they can affect fingerprint capture.
  4. Uphold transparency: Do not attempt to alter your appearance in any way. Honesty is paramount, and attempting to deceive the system can lead to serious consequences.

Embracing Biometrics with Confidence

While navigating the biometric requirement may seem daunting at first, remember it is simply another step on your Canadian immigration journey. By equipping yourself with knowledge and preparation, you can approach this stage with confidence, paving the way for a seamless and successful immigration experience.

Simplify Your Canadian Immigration Journey with Pelican Migration Consultants

Navigating the intricacies of Canadian immigration can feel overwhelming, especially when it comes to understanding and fulfilling biometric requirements. At Pelican Migration Consultants, we understand these complexities and are here to guide you every step of the way.

Our experienced immigration consultants in Dubai possess in-depth knowledge of biometric procedures and can:

  1. Assess your individual needs and eligibility: We'll ensure you understand whether you need to provide biometrics and help you navigate any exemptions or exceptions.
  2. Coordinate biometrics appointments: We can help you schedule appointments at convenient locations and ensure you have all the necessary documentation.
  3. Prepare you for your appointment: We'll provide clear instructions and answer any questions you may have to ensure a smooth and successful biometric experience.
  4. Offer ongoing support: We're available to answer questions, address concerns, and guide you through the entire immigration process, including biometrics.

Ready to migrate to Canada? Contact Pelican Migration Consultants today and let our experts guide you every step of the way.