The purpose of this Practice Notice is to communicate the Immigration Division’s (ID) intention to resume in-person hearings on September 14, 2020. It also serves to meet the commitment made in the Practice Notice issued by the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (IRB) on April 7, 2020 that the IRB would provide at least 30 days’ notice before proceeding with a previously scheduled in-person hearing or scheduling a new in-person hearing.
The ID will continue to use teleconference as the primary means of conducting detention reviews and detained admissibility hearings in light of ongoing health-related restrictions on the transportation of detainees and limitations on access to detention facilities. The Division will review its approach to the conduct of such hearings on a regular basis and will consider adjustments when appropriate.
In resuming in-person hearings, the ID is committed to taking steps as required to protect the health and safety of all hearing participants. These include:
The ID’s preferred means of conducting non-detained admissibility hearings will be in-person or by videoconference. The use of teleconference for non-detained admissibility hearings will only be considered in circumstances where the Division is satisfied that fairness and natural justice can be assured.