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PR study abroad part time on Canadian University exchange program

Discussion in 'Permanent Residency Obligations' started by acogscott, Apr 21, 2019.

  1. I entered Canada as Temp.PR status since Sept 2014 and have been PR since Feb 2017, and studying at McGill University for my BAC which I just finished March 2019. Question is...as part of this University of McGill Degree course there was an option for EXCHANGE with Copenhagen for 2 x Semesters.

    As this is officially part of the Canadian study degree course will it affect my 1095 days Residency Obligation or as it is part of the course it will be accepted as if I were studying here in Montreal ? Makes a big difference as either I can apply now for Citizenship or have to wait another 5 months ? Any help that is official where I can find this info ....much appreciated !
  2. #2 Bs65, Apr 21, 2019 at 11:21 AM
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2019
    Others can comment as well but personal view would be that it would not in any way count towards citizenship as they must be physical days in Canada. Do not believe there are any exceptions to physical presence for citizenship unlike a few exceptions for the PR residency obligation.


    As for the PR residency obligation those days will not count either given education is a personal choice and is not really the same as being assigned on a temporary basis by a Canadian employer.


    As said this is my view only and others can comment as well but guess you could apply now if you qualify and then travel or wait a few extra months keeping in mind the 1095 days are counted back in the 5 years before the application.
    acogscott likes this.
  3. Agree. Study abroad is a personal choice.
  4. I concur in the observations offered by @Bs65 . . . but with more emphasis. Those days outside Canada pursuant to an exchange program will NOT count. Not toward the citizenship presence requirement. Not toward compliance with the PR Residency Obligation.

    I do not ordinarily make definitive statements. I ordinarily let others respond to questions for which a straight-forward declarative response is appropriate.

    But this query warrants a particularly emphatic response. Particularly as to the citizenship presence requirement, it warrants emphasizing that it is a requirement based on ACTUAL PHYSICAL PRESENCE IN CANADA.

    Sure, there are exceptions pursuant to which a PR's time abroad can count. Both for citizenship and for RO compliance. The exceptions for counting time abroad toward citizenship are very narrow, and so narrow as to not be worth much attention. There are broader exceptions for counting time abroad toward compliance with the PR Residency Obligation, but none of those exceptions are the least implicated relative to being abroad attendant an educational course of study, pursuant to an exchange program or otherwise.

    The reference to "personal choice" as a factor baffles me because that has NO RELEVANCE in any of the exceptions pursuant to which days abroad might be counted, toward either the citizenship presence requirement or PR RO compliance.

    Most people will find the information posted by IRCC (such as that linked by @Bs65 ) easier to read and understand, but of course notwithstanding the authority of the source, that information is not official. The most definitive, OFFICIAL sources are, of course, the respective statutory provisions prescribing the presence requirement for citizenship and the residency obligation for PRs. (Federal Court decisions rulings are also official law but no need, here, to dig that deep.) In particular . . .

    . . . for the precise provisions prescribing the presence requirement for citizenship, see Section 5 in the Citizenship Act here: https://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/C-29/page-2.html#docCont

    . . . for the precise provisions prescribing the PR Residency Obligation, see Section 28 in IRPA here: https://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/I-2.5/page-7.html#h-20

    Specific subsection prescribing citizenship presence requirement is Citizenship Act subsection 5(1)(c)(i) and the manner in which it is calculated is stated in subsection 5(1.001); the exceptions (which again are very narrow) are set out in subsections 5(1.01), 5(1.02), and 5(1.03). NOTE no hint that "personal choice" has any relevance.

    Specific provisions governing what counts toward meeting the PR Residency Obligation are set out in IRPA subsection 28(2)(a), which includes provisions that have been interpreted to be "exceptions" (such as the "exception" which will credit time abroad accompanying a Canadian citizen spouse). NOTE that here as well there is NO hint that "personal choice" is in any way relevant.

    (There is a separate provision for allowing PRs to retain PR status, despite being found to be in breach of the RO, based on H&C reasons; IRPA subsection 28(2)(c). The interpretation and application of this provision recognizes the importance of the "reason" the PR remained abroad, and whether that reason involved personal choice is a factor in how that reason influences the overall assessment of H&C reasons. Generally the more the reason is rooted in personal choice, the less it helps make the H&C case. Contrary to common misunderstanding, however, the actual effect in a particular case can vary considerably; for example, it is NOT true that a reason involving personal choice will preclude consideration of that reason as part of what justifies H&C relief. Gets complicated. There is extensive discussion, in other topics here, about H&C relief for a breach of the PR RO.)

    Further observation for clarification: It is not clear what temporary status you had between September 2014 and February 2017. There is no temporary PR status. I am guessing you meant TRV or TRP, as in Temporary Resident Visa or Temporary Resident Permit, or you typed the French version of these, in which event there should be no problem getting half-day credit (up to a total of 365 days credit) for that pre-PR time in Canada. So long as, of course, there is formal documentation of the status. (While presence in Canada as a visitor should count, for example, if there was no formal record documenting the status, which is common for visa-exempt travelers who are waived into Canada without being issued a Visitor's Record, it can be difficult getting IRCC to actually count those days; some applicants are even reporting IRCC summarily returning applications which have relied on credit for such periods of time.)

    Additionally, moreover, be sure to WAIT to apply with a comfortable margin over the minimum. A buffer is NOT required. But a good buffer can avoid serious problems if there are errors, either errors made by the applicant or errors in calculation made by a processing agent in IRCC, and a good buffer can make the difference between routine and non-routine processing, between a smooth and relatively quick process versus delays.
    acogscott likes this.
  5. Thanks... t'was as I thought BUT was really hoping that because it was part of the Degree program that offered the Exchange to Copenhague university for 2 x semesters that it would still be covered in the 1095 days... :(
    Will wait patiently until Mid September in this case to be totally sure. APPRECIATE the help.
  6. Question please,
    So I did an exchange program in 2011 for 6 months do I need to add that to my education background for my PR application?
  7. It's definitely not covered. This is counted as time spent outside of Canada.
    YVR123 likes this.

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