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  • By DLG Staff

Canada could Repeal Medical Inadmissibility for Excessive Demand as Early as April

After months of public discussion regarding certain medical inadmissibility restrictions in immigration applications, action was taken by the Federal Liberal Government this week. Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Minister, Ahmed Hussen, declared that a plan has been made and presented to repeal some of these policies.

As the policies currently stand, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada can deny permanent residence applicants if they “might reasonably be expected to cause excessive demand on health or social services”. Excessive Demand is generally described as costs to the health care system which are likely to exceed what an average Canadian would amass over five consecutive years.

The threshold of annual cost to the health care per capita is updated each year. Effective January 1, 2017, the departmental threshold is listed as $6,655 per year. This number is then multiplied by 5 and applications are studied by immigration officers to decide whether excessive demand on the health care system is likely. Approximately 1,000 applications are flagged annually as inadmissible due to excessive demand on the health care system.

It is not only the primary applicant, but also their dependants whose medical conditions are considered in the application. School-age children requiring special education services are predominantly described in Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada guidelines. A study into medical inadmissibility will be completed when an applicant’s children are diagnosed as having

  • autism or autism spectrum disorder;

  • deafness;

  • legal blindness;

  • an intellectual disability; or

  • a significant behaviour or psychiatric disorder that could make being placed in a regular classroom setting a danger to them or others.

In August 2016, a well documented case of medical inadmissibility presented itself when a York University professor, Felipe Montoya, was denied permanent residence based on his son living with Down Syndrome. In this case, the Montoya family was denied permanent residence after years of Prof. Montoya living in Canada employed as a tenured professor. Following pressure on the Federal Government to reconsider this decision, it was overturned through “Ministerial Intervention” based on compassionate grounds.

Cases like these can become a thing of the past depending on the Federal Government response to the plan submitted by Hussen this past week. The deadline for the Federal Government’s response to the plan is April 12. While details of the plan have not been released, Hussen has suggested that it recommends a full repeal of the excessive demand policy and full government action is anticipated.

For further information on the different programs available to immigrate to Canada contact us at​


Desloges Law Group is a Toronto law firm specializing in all types of Canadian immigration law, administrative law and civil litigation.

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