The eCOPR Timeline is an important part of the immigration process. It is the document that shows that you are a permanent resident of Canada. It also allows you to travel internationally and access benefits that are only available to permanent residents. The CBA’s Immigration Law Section has sent a letter to IRCC suggesting ways to improve the process.
The eCOPR is an electronic form of permanent resident card in Canada. It is used to confirm a person’s status as a permanent resident in the country and serves the same function as the traditional COPR. The eCOPR is available in the IRCC portal and takes just a few weeks to process after a person submits their photo and home address information.
The CBA’s Immigration Law Section sent a letter to IRCC suggesting improvements in the processing times for eCOPRs, as delays jeopardize an approved applicant’s ability to travel internationally and to access benefits that are only available to Canadian permanent residents. Delays also mean that new permanent residents are effectively “grounded” for the 120 days or so between the issuance of their eCOPR and the receipt of their first PR card.
One improvement that the Section suggests is to make an electronic PR travel document (PRTD) available in the IRCC login portal on the same day that new permanent residents can download their eCOPR. This would allow them to travel abroad without worrying about losing their eCOPR, and could help ease the burden on immigration services.
ECOPR Processing Time
In a letter to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada or IRCC, the CBA’s Immigration Law Section suggests that it is time to improve processing times. The Section points out that delays jeopardize approved applicants’ ability to travel internationally and prevent them from accessing benefits available only to permanent residents. In addition, those waiting for their first PR card are effectively “grounded” for the 120 days between the issuance of their eCOPR and receipt of their cards, because they cannot re-enter Canada on commercial flights without a valid Canadian passport.
The Section’s letter also notes that eCOPRs often contain errors, and the timeframes listed on the portal for amending an eCOPR are unreasonably long. For example, it can take six months to amend an eCOPR that has been incorrectly signed, which makes it difficult for those who need to use their eCOPR to apply for a new Social Insurance Number or for provincial health coverage. This is a major obstacle for applicants who are trying to build their lives in Canada, and it should be addressed.