Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council and the protection of Canadian immigrants

Today I will talk about how to protect the public from unscrupulous consultants/lawyers. First I will briefly give how precautions are taken into effect in order to protect public from unscrupulous consultants and advisors.

As we all know 30 June 2011 Canadian Ministry of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism designated the Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council (ICCRC) as the new regulatory body for Canadian immigration consultants.

The main goal of ICCRC is to create an effective and transparent system to regulate the registered immigration consultants.

The Need for Consumer Protection

RCICs will be able to provide valuable services to would-be users of the Canadian immigration system. These are often persons residing in foreign countries who are hoping to immigrate to Canada in some legal capacity or persons residing in Canada with unstable or unofficial status. These individuals are often vulnerable, as they may:

  • Have limited ability to communicate in or understand written or spoken English or French
  • Have limited ability to understand Canadian immigration laws and the Canadian immigration system
  • Have limited understanding of the role of immigration consultants and their restrictions and/or abilities
  • Be under duress or in stressful situations, especially those applying for refugee status. (1)

The Role of the Council

As the regulatory body for immigration consultants in Canada, the Council considers the needs of Canada’s population and a diverse consumer base. It is putting in place measures to ensure consumer protection for all clients of immigration consultants.

The Council is implementing a number processes to ensure that RCICs are operating ethically and competently at all times. These include:

  • Effective and accessible Complaints and Discipline mechanisms
  • High membership standards that include a rigorous entrance examination and competency testing before admission
  • Proactive support and monitoring of the activities of new members
  • A compliance audit mechanism that builds in effective oversight of all members
  • Continuing education processes that require members to remain up-to date in their knowledge and skills
  • Accreditation of educational programs that focuses on detailed learning objectives, especially practice management
  • Access for members to practice management tools. (1)

As we discussed above ICCRC takes serious about regulating the immigration consultants. Also ICCRC created a complaint mechanism for consumers who want to file complains about consultants.

The ICCRC Complaints and Discipline Process

The primary function of the Council is to ensure that all consumers have access to immigration services from a qualified and ethical body of consultants. Measures are in place to protect all individuals who may use the services of immigration consultants.

As a potential user of immigration services from a Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant (RCIC), it is vital that you have a safe and effective means to communicate your questions, concerns or complaints to the Council. If you have any issues with the immigration services you were or are being provided, you can contact the Council in the following ways:

  • Complaint form against an RCIC
  • Complaint form against a non-member. (2)

You can reach the complaint forms above by clicking and review the details.

Also you can check if a consultant registered or if in a good standing member of the council from the link below;

If you want to make a complaint about an unregistered immigration consultant outside Canada you can also make a complaint of him/her to the Council.

Further to the designation given by the federal government, the Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council (ICCRC) has the authority to regulate and discipline immigration consultants who are authorized to practice. Unauthorized providers of Canadian immigration services are not regulated and cannot be disciplined by the Council. In these cases, ICCRC will investigate the situation and, where necessary, pass the information along to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA), a provincial or territorial Law Society or any other Authority. (3)

To find more information about Canadian immigation lawyers you can contact and check The Canadian Bar Association official website

If you would like know if a lawyer is a good standing or make a complaint about an unscrupulous lawyer you should always contact CBA.

Cem Devrim Turetken
Immigration Program Student at Ashton College
under the tutelage of Jose Godoy Toku

References :

(1) ICCRC – What it Means to You: The Public
(2) The ICCRC Complaints and Discipline Process
(3) Complaint against a Non-Member
(Fake Consultants)

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