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    Canada - U.S. Consulates

    There are two consulates which process family based visas in Canada, Montreal and Vancouver.

    • IR1/CR1/IR5
      • All IR1 /CR1 and IR5 visas will be processed/interview at Montreal.
    • K Visas
      • K visas are processed/interviewed at both Montreal and Vancouver, depending on your Province of Residence:
        • Manitoba and West: Vancouver
        • Ontario and East: Montreal


    Direct Consular Filing in Canada

    Direct Consular filing is available in Canada for exceptional circumstances only.

    Police Checks

    Inside Canada

    There are two types of police checks:

    • Canada wide name check (Certificate of no conviction)
    • Full fingerprint version (Certified Criminal Record Check)

    Canada-wide name check

    These can be obtained at your local police station or RCMP office. The name check only takes a week or two, sometimes they can be obtained on the spot. Prices for police checks vary from station to station. When requesting this service, inform the agent that you are seeking a Canada wide police check for immigration purposes.

    Important: It should note that the Canadian Police Information Centre (CPIC) or the national criminal records repository was searched using the applicant’s name and date of birth

    Note: If you obtain your police check from the RCMP please note that there is a difference between "Criminal Record Search" and "Canadian Police Certificate" both have been accepted.

    Full fingerprint version

    Applicants who have been convicted of a crime in Canada must contact their local RCMP office to obtain a “Certified Criminal Record Check,” which lists an applicant’s criminal history, indicating the section of the Canadian Criminal Code under which the applicant was charged, the disposition of the case, and the penalty imposed, if any. Obtaining a Certified Criminal Records Check requires submission of a fingerprint chart; the RCMP could take between two and twelve months to process a request for a Certified Criminal Record Check.


    See: RCMP or the Commissionaires

    Outside Canada

    Applicants who are not physically present in Canada must obtain a Certified Criminal Record Check by sending a duplicate set of fingerprints (taken by a local police force) to the RCMP.

    Visiting the U.S. while your visa application is pending

    Entry in to the U.S. is not technically prohibited while you are waiting for your visa to process. The final say on whether you will be admitted to the U.S. to visit during this period lies with the U.S. Border Protection at your port of entry.

    Visa applicants, generally, are expected to provide evidence that they are intending to return to their country of residence. Therefore, applicants should provide proof of “binding” or sufficient ties to their home country or permanent residence abroad. This may include documentation of the following:


    • Property ownership (or rental agreement)
    • Employment contract or statement from employer stating that the position will continue when the employee returns (expected date of return


    In some cases the visa applicant is not asked for this proof, however it can be requested at any time and it is advisable to carry this information with you when crossing the border.


    Some words of advice from VJ member flames9


    1) Always tell the TRUTH. Never lie to the POE officer

    2) Be confident in your replies

    3) Keep your response short and to the point, don't tell your life story!

    4) Look the POE officer in the eye when speaking to them. They are looking for people lying and have been trained to find them

    5) Pack light! No job resumes with you.

    6) Bring proof of ties to Canada (letter from employer showing when you are expected back at work, lease, etc etc)

    7) Always be polite, being rude isn't going to get you anywhere, and could make things worse!!

    😎 Have a plan in case you do get denied (be polite). It wont harm your visa application if you are denied, that is if you're polite and didn't lie! Refer to #1


    Montreal Consulate Instructions:

    Return of Passports and Visas for Immigrant Visas

    Sign up for courier services (Loomis/DHL) to have your passport and package returned to you.


    1. Register for courier services on this website, click on create an account.

    2. Follow the steps and select “Permanently Immigrate to the United States - Register for Courier Services Only”

    • Please note that all your family members applying for a visa should be registered.

    3. Choose your Loomis branch

    4. Print out the confirmation at the end of the process, you will be asked to show it in order to access the consulate the day of your appointment.

    *note* There is an extra fee to have the package delivered to your address but the shipping to the Loomis location closest to you is free.


    Interview Scheduling and Sign up for Non-Immigrant Visas

    Non-Immigrant Visa

    Vancouver Consulate Instructions:

    Return of Passports and Visas

    Passports will be returned by Loomis

    When registering an account on the CSC website to book your consulate interview, you are asked to select your local Loomis Courier branch. After issuing the Visa, the Consulate will send your Passport to this location, at which time Loomis contacts you to pick it up, or arrange for local delivery.

    Vancouver does not require you to register with Loomis beforehand, but Montreal does.

    Employment Insurance when immigrating to the U.S.

    Information on this can be found [here]

    Montreal IR1/CR1 Interview Letter

    Montreal Interview Letter for Immigrant Visa Applicants (CR1/IR1) as of September 2008

    Other documents that accompany the interview letter

    Vancouver/Montreal K1 Visa Checklist (Packet 3)/Interview Letter (Packet 4)

    Direct link to Packet 3 on Vancouver consulate website:

    K1 & K3 Fact Sheets, and Packet 3 instructions list.

    Montreal Documents (Click document once to enlarge)

    Packet 3 Confirmation of Processing (Aug 2009)

    Packet 3 Checklist (Aug 2009)

    Packet 3 Instructions (Aug 2009): Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4

    Packet 3 Photo Requirements

    Packet 4 (Oct 2009): Page 1 Page 2 Page 3

    Packet 4 (Sep 2010): Page 1 Page 2 Page 3

    Important notice Beginning October 22, 2008, all applicants applying for nonimmigrant (K) visas in Montreal must use the new DS-160 application form, which is accessible on https://ceac.state.gov/genniv/

    After completing the new DS-160, the applicant will electronically submit the application and will be provided with a confirmation page that includes only limited biographical information and a bar code. Applicants must bring this confirmation page with them to their interview. Please note: if the online application has not been completed fully and properly the applicant’s case cannot be processed and a new interview appointment will be required.

    Medical Examinations for Immigrant and K visa applicants

    List of Panel Physicians in Canada Link

    Montreal Consulate Medical Information (Aug 2009): Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 (Click document once to enlarge)

    External links

    Montreal Supplement to instructions for Immigrant Visa Applicants

    Vancouver Consulate - Applying for a Visa in Vancouver

    Reciprocity Schedule - Dept. of State - Acceptable Canadian Documents (scroll to middle of page)

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    NOTE: The above information does not address the specific requirements for any given case and is not a substitute for the advice of an attorney.

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