Have you applied for a visa and been asked by the Canadian government to submit your biometrics but have no idea what they are? Worry no more because Imin Consulting is here to help! In this short blog, we will go over the basics of biometrics with step-by-step instructions and cover some of the most commonly asked questions.
What are biometrics?
Canada, along with many other countries worldwide, requires newcomers to submit their biometrics in various cases. Those collections are there to make travel easier while keeping Canada safe.
Biometrics are the measurements of unique physical characteristics (like facial features and fingerprints). They are used to authenticate and confirm identity.
In what cases would you need to give your biometrics?
You need to give your biometrics if you are planning to come to Canada through one of the following applications:
- a visitor visa
- a work or study permit (excluding US nationals)
- permanent residence
- refugee or asylum status
- an extension of your stay in Canada, known as a visitor record
- work or study permit extension
As with any other programs, there are exemptions.
How did COVID-19 affect the Biometrics Collection Process?
Due to COVID-19, anyone in Canada applying for temporary residence is exempt from giving biometrics. To qualify for that new exemption, you must BOTH:
- Be in Canada
- Be applying or have an application in progress
- to extend your stay as a student, worker or visitor
- to restore your status as a student, worker, or visitor
- for a work or study permit
- for a visitor visa
- for a temporary resident permit
Remember: Your biometrics will expire in 10 years. Nevertheless, suppose you have given your biometrics for a visitor visa, study or work permit. In that case, you do not need to submit them again if you are applying for visitor, study or work.
Furthermore, currently, due to COVID-19, if you are applying for a Permanent Residency (PR) but have submitted your biometrics for any other applications, you are not required to give them again.
When should you give your biometrics?
Firstly, you can always give your biometrics as a part of the application you submit to the government of Canada. You will know if you need to provide them by following the instruction guide.
In some cases, you will be asked to give your biometrics while being processed for your application. The government of Canada will contact you via email with an official letter.
What steps should you take to give your biometrics?
Firstly, pay your fees online and register for a location of your choice. The biometric collection sites are slowly opening up, so it’s your responsibility to make sure that you have registered and brought all the necessary documents.
After you pay your fees, you will get an official biometrics instruction letter. For the day of your appointment, you must bring that letter along with a valid passport.
And finally go to your appointment and make sure you followed all the guidelines in the instruction letter. The list of biometrics collections sites near you is available on the government of Canada website. If you are outside Canada, do not worry! There are multiple collection centres worldwide available for registration.
Where are Biometric Collection Sites?
Make sure to check the list and find the proper availability. The wait time might be long, especially these days, so, if possible, register at least a month before the deadline for your biometrics submission. After your choose the collection site that works for you, follow the instructions on the registration page.
Imin Consulting is here to help!
We hope this short blog post was helpful! Reach out to us with any question you might have. We are always glad to assist you with your needs.