Permanent Residency: The Final Stage?

Nearly four months have passed since the trauma of undergoing my immigration medical for my Permanent Residency application, and it seems that the end is now in sight! At the end of February I received an email from my new best friend, Citizenship & Immigration Canada (CiC), letting me know that ‘The processing of my application for permanent residence in Canada is almost complete.’ YEY!

A very welcome email...

After reading the email all the way through, I was so excited to see that only five relatively small tasks were standing between me and my illustrious Permanent Resident card:

  • Family Composition – “Has your family composition changed since our last correspondence?” i.e. Am I still in a common-law relationship with the person listed in my application? This was an easy one to evaluate (yes I am!), and as this means that no action is required, 1.5 seconds later I was ready to move onto the next step.
  • Right of Permanent Residence Fee – “Every principal applicant and his/her accompanying spouse/common law partner are required to pay a Right of Permanent Residence Fee (RPRF) in the amount of 490 Canadian dollars. The RPRF is a separate fee that must be paid in addition to the processing fees that you have already paid.” Yes, this means paying ANOTHER $980 total (for two of us), though as this is the final fee it’s one I’m more than willing to pay! The payment was easy to make by credit card through the CiC website, and I emailed the proof of payment to them immediately.
  • Passport Scan – “You are exempted from obtaining a visa to visit Canada under Regulation 190 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act; therefore you do not need to submit original passports to finalize your application.” Good news! Instead, we just had to print off a scanned copy of each of our passport photo pages, which we have  a stock of after so many visa applications.

  • Height and Eye Colour – “We require confirmation of this information for yourself and each accompanying family member. Please complete the attached form  “Biodata” and return it to us.”  The email didn’t say what this was for, but I’m making an educated (and hopefully correct) guess that this information will be printed on our PR card, just like it is on BC Drivers Licenses. Completed in a little under two minutes.
  • Photographs – “You must submit two (2) recent photographs of yourself and of each accompanying family member that meet the requirements stated on this webpage.” Again, I’m assuming this is for the PR card, and luckily we had many, many spares of passport photos for various visa related reasons. It took around 20 minutes to locate them all, but after searching the apartment we found them in the end!

My documents needed to be submitted by mail rather than email, as hard copy passport photographs were required. It didn’t take long to package this together and send it Express Mail to the “Case Processing Pilot – Ottawa (CPP-O)”. I had 60 days to collect the documents and mail them, but it took me just two weeks, and one of those was spent in Hawaii….but that’s another blog post. The total shipping cost for all the documents was $15 (postage has turned out to be a much larger chunk of the overall PR cost than I thought it would be).

So now we’re back to playing the waiting game, but hopefully for the final time! If all goes well in Ottawa we could have our Permanent Resident card in just a few months. Then the summer would really be worth celebrating. Stay tuned…


Application Timeline


Tags: , , , ,

About MarmitetoMaple

I'm originally from the UK and have been working and living the dream in Vancouver, BC, since January 2011. I am a firm believer in travel, good cheese, volunteering and community engagement.

76 responses to “Permanent Residency: The Final Stage?”

  1. joehoover says :

    Good luck, I’ve been checking out places to holiday (are you calling it vacation yet?) if we move there. From taking most trips to Europe and SE Asia, it opens up another part of the world, and Hawaii was one that leapt out.

    How do you decide your eye colour, my partner thinks theirs are blue, but I would have said dishwater grey.

    On the holidays, is it really two weeks, do companies not offer more? Are can you generally take unpaid time off if needed. Seems the biggest shock would be dropping from 5 weeks a year to two, especially if moving abroad and so many new places to discover.

    • marmitetomaple says :

      Haha, I am definitely calling it vacation; holiday was one of the first words to go! Hawaii was amazing, my next post will be about my trip!

      Generally it really is two weeks, though it depends how flexible the organization is. I have three weeks and a very flexible overtime policy so I haven’t been short of time. Others I know have struggled a little, especially if you want to fit in a trip home. But don’t forget we have a stat holiday almost every month so plenty of long weekends to work with!

      • joehoover says :

        Just something I’ll have to work around, I wouldn’t plan on coming back home often if I am only out there a couple of years.

        Look forward to reading about Hawaii, always been on my to do list

      • roveena says :


        do i need to submit my original passport copy for stamping in canada as im in india and my husband is in canada? or just scanned copies are fine?


      • MarmitetoMaple says :

        Hi there, thank you for your comment! It will depend on what instructions you are given, but from what I’ve heard in the other comments often people are asked to submit their original passport instead. Make sure you double check your instructions just to be sure. Best of luck with the rest of your application!

  2. Nicola says :

    We are currently waiting to hear if we have been accepted to do our first year in Canada, I cant wait!! Ive been enjoying reading your blog, its been quite helpful and you’ll have to give me some tips sometime haha

  3. Michelle says :


    I’ve just found your blog and found it very helpful.

    I’m moving to Vancouver in July with my boyfriend (through IEC) and reading your blog is making me look forward to it even more! Good luck with your PR application…it seems like a distant dream to me… !

    • marmitetomaple says :

      Hey Michelle, thank you so much for the comment! Congrats on getting your IEC visa and good luck for the big move out here in July. You’ll be here for the BEST time of year!

  4. dhansu singh says :

    Hi..thanks its a really nice article.
    I wanted to ask you this question: I had been granted FSW visa in 1996..then I went to canada after paying “Right of Canada Permanent Residency Fee “. Then I came back to my home country and never went till next 10 years.So my visa residency lapsed.
    Then I reapplied as Provincial Nominee and got mail from high commision to pay residency fee.

    Now my question is “Do I Have to pay this Right to Permanent Residency Fee again / second time”?

  5. Jenny says :

    Me and my boyfriend are from the UK we are going through the same process. We have sent our medical and right of perm res fee away about 2 months ago so I am hoping the next step is not too far away.

  6. clayallison says :

    Hay Congratulation, Now i’m waiting for Citizenship & Immigration Canada i love to stay Canada, Thanks for your Information.

  7. Shuai Liang says :

    Thank you for the sharing. I got a pretty much the same email today. However, when they saying “Please complete the attached form Biodata and return it to us”, they did not attached a form. In your email, did you receive a Biodata form, or I misunderstand them?

  8. Subodh Singh says :

    Hi Thanks for sharing your information and the application time line. I live in Vancouver too and received the email 2 weeks ago. Sent my passport using Canada Post xpress mail as directed in the email. I might have to travel soon to US and was wondering how long did it take them to get back to you? In your case, you are visa exempt so they didnt need your passport.


    • marmitetomaple says :

      Hi Subodh, I waited a couple of months between sending off the forms and receiving the ultimate approval, though as you say, I didn’t need to send my passport. Someone just commented on another post of mine (A Trip Around The Flagpole) to say they received their passport back in the express envelope after 3 days (but not their confirmation of Residency), so I’m sure yours can’t be far behind!

    • tara says :

      Hi Subodh,
      I am in the same boat – I sent in my passport, and need to travel to the US soon. How long before you got your passport?
      I’m in Quebec and my passport is at the Ottawa office though – but any information is helpful right now.

  9. Sharron Cristobal says :

    Hi! Congratulations. Just like you, me and my fam just received the request for visa letter. They asked us to submit the filled BIODATA form but I can’t find any attachment. Is it possible that you email me a copy of the form. Thanks so much.

    • marmitetomaple says :

      Hi Sharron, congratulations to you too! A few people have asked me the same question, but unfortunately I don’t have a copy of it anymore. I recommend contacting CIC and letting them know that nothing was attached. Good luck with the final stage! Lizzie

  10. Martin says :

    I got receipt ”Right of permanent residence” just two days ago. They asked me only to pay 490 CAD fee. I guess they will notice to send other documents if they need to. Or do you think they changed rules?

    I would like to thank you for this blog. I find it very usefull for people who are stuck in paperwork and dont know what to expect. I had simmilar problems and now I am happy that everything is going so well.

    I wish I would find this blog sooner.

    Thank you.

    • MarmitetoMaple says :

      Hi Martin,

      Thanks for the comment, I’m glad you find my blog useful! Yes they will definitely let you know if they need any more paperwork, it seems like the rules have now changed and you might not have to do the biodata form.

      Best of luck with the rest of your application!

  11. Niaz says :

    I have got passport request for permanent residency visa from CPP-Ottawa but they did not ask for any photos and also no biodata form is attached. So my question is should I send 2 copies photos or not… Please advise. Thanks

  12. Radha says :

    HI I got my passport request as well and was asked for two passport size pics. What were the dimensions of the pics you sent? It seems canadian passport pics and PR card pics are different sizes. Thanks

    • MarmitetoMaple says :

      Hi Radha, unfortunately I can’t remember the dimensions, but I remember taking the instructions into a drugstore to get the pictures and the people at the photo department let me know which size I needed for a PR card. Best of luck with the rest of your application!

  13. Michely says :

    Hi I sponsored my husband. From the time we got the PPR to when we submitted It to when we received his CPR and entry visa, a span if 15 days occurred. I was quite surprised how quick it was. The advantage we had was that he lived in Mexico DF and was able to drop it off at the Canadian immigration office, and pick it up in person. Also, we paid the right of permanent resident fee when we first submitted our application. My friend is in the same boat as I only her husband lives in Chile, he submitted his passport by mail and ROPRF over a month ago and they haven’t herd back. Is there generally different wait times for each visa office abroad?

  14. Raj says :

    Hi i paid my landing fee and medical done in april but still i did not get any email or information from CIC but my work permit expire in august, what should i do now? should i wait or apply for next work permit? how long its gonna take for my PR?

    • MarmitetoMaple says :

      Hi Raj, hopefully you don’t have long to wait now! If it’s getting close to your work permit expiring you can call CIC and they will advise you about what will happen when it does. Typically, you’ll move into Implied Status and will be able to continue working etc. Good luck with the application!

  15. niran says :

    How long after sending off permanent resident application should it take before I hear from them

  16. s dunny says :

    Hi. I am on a temp work permit and took medical on march also finger print search and pr processing fees. Now ive been told to send updated heights for my children and 2photos each which i think are for the pr cards. i sent these 2weeks ago to the high commission in london. Uk. How long for my visa to be issued as i want my family to join me in october in canada as i have been here since april 2012 alone. My wife and children are all accompying me on my application but im not sure if i book flights in october if they can come and attend school or if they need to wait on our pr visas first.
    Thanks in advance

    • MarmitetoMaple says :

      Hi there, thanks for your comment! It sounds like you’re near the end of the process, good luck! I don’t know for sure how long it will take but hopefully just a few weeks now. As I understand it your children can attend school if they are attending kindergarten, but if they are older you need to have a temporary work permit or your PR. Further information is here so I recommend giving them a call to find out more: Good luck!

  17. Jason says :

    Hello, i am Jason from the Philippines,we just finished medical,me,my wife and four kids, last july 17 2014,do i have to wait for the notice from cic on when to pay for the residence fee or i can pay it right away …thank you.

    • MarmitetoMaple says :

      Hi Jason, great news that you’re done your medical! It’s best to wait for the notice from CIC to make sure your payment doesn’t get lost, and that you have the right reference number. It shouldn’t be too long now! Best of luck, Lizzie

  18. Akin says :

    Hello, I did my medicals in May 2014 and yet to hear from them regarding paying the residence fees!

  19. Michely says :

    Hi again!
    Thanks for all you advice it has been really helpful. I wanted to know if you knew approximately how long it takes to receive the permanent residency card? My husband landed on the 21st of June and the officer explained to us that we would get the card in the mail. We called last week to change our address and CIC said they had not sent the card out yet. What are your thoughts? Thanks again for your help

    • MarmitetoMaple says :

      Hi there, for me it did take about 8 weeks I think, I’d almost forgotten about it by the time it finally arrives! Fingers crossed you don’t have much longer to wait!

  20. Leonardo De Leon says :

    Hi there, I applied PR June 5, 2012 to CIO-Nova Scotia, Medical done September 2012, RPRF fee September 2013, File transfered to CPP-Ottawa September 3, 2012. They ask me to do another medical test as well as my family in the Philippines because they said our medicals has expired and we done May 2014, Medicals reached to Ottawa June 30 2014. Until then, there’s no update anymore I don’t know what happen to my application now. I tried sending CPP-O an email but its very difficult to get a reply from them. I am sick of waiting. Please help

    • MarmitetoMaple says :

      Hi Leonardo, thanks for your comment! Unfortunately I can’t advise on anything else other than to try calling CIC, they should be able to let you know what’s happening with your application: Best of luck!

    • Michely says :

      Hi Leo, as someone who went trough this, you really have no choice but to wait. When it come to immigration, they have a due process. All cases are important to the applicant but unfortunately there are about 2000 other applicants who’s file need to be reviewed each day. Sooner or later they will respond. You can also call 1-888-242-2100 hopefully an agent may help you further

  21. Keiden says :

    Hi i got a request to pay permanent residence fee,sent the receipt to manila embassy. Do u know how much longer i have to wait or what is the next step?are they gonna request to send my passport in and how long do i have to wait after sending it to get my visa?hope to hear from u. Thank you

    • MarmitetoMaple says :

      Hi Keiden, thanks for the comment. Unfortunately I’m not sure how long you’ll have to wait before you will hear anything, or what your specific next steps be. CIC will be going through applications on a first come first served basis and will get to you as soon as they can. I waited a couple of months before I received my final confirmation of Permanent Residence. I didn’t have to send my passport in as a UK citizen but you may need to do so, CIC will let you know the next step. Others have shared that their passport was returned very quickly, within a couple of weeks. You can check over processing times here and can also call 1-888-242-2100 to speak with an agent directly. Good luck!

  22. laurenmrae says :

    Hi! I applied for a work permit through IEC and was approved a few days ago, i am looking to cross the border to receive my work permit sometime this week and am just wondering what documents i need to show for them to hand me my permit, do i need a letter of offer from an employer? and do i need to have health insurance? Im only working here for a year so i don’t want to have to spend too much on insurance. Can i get my SIN number at the border crossing? and lastly did you have to show that you have sufficient funds ($2500)? thanks so much for your help! Lauren

    • MarmitetoMaple says :

      Hi Lauren, congrats on the work permit, that’s awesome! You don’t need an offer of employment, but you DO need your letter of approval, proof of $2,500 savings and proof of insurance that lasts a year. I wasn’t even asked for the proof of savings or insurance when I crossed the border, but it is a condition of the visa and they might ask for it so definitely make sure you have it. You can’t get your SIN number at the border but it’s easy to do at Service Canada, there are offices all over Canada. You don’t need to make an appointment, just turn up and get in the line and it shouldn’t take long. Good luck!!

      • laurenmrae says :

        Thanks so much for your help! May i ask what health insurance you went with? Im trying to set it up online but most companies want a health card number which i dont have, i just want a cheap, basic insurance as im only here for a year.

  23. MarmitetoMaple says :

    You’re so welcome! I went with Ace for my first two years as they were the cheapest, but then the prices went up so I went with Outbacker insurance – Most insurance companies say you must be a UK resident to use it but technically you are a UK resident still and when I emailed Ace previously about this they said it was fine. Always worth ringing to check just to make sure. Also, I know people who have found a loophole in that they have bought insurance to cross the border then cancelled it as soon as they were through to get a refund. Technically this voids the visa and means you have no coverage in case of emergency so I don’t recommend it at all. But….I know it’s been done.

  24. Ferdinand jalocon says :

    Hello Lizzie! how are you? it’s me again Jason,we already paid the RPRF ,OCT 3,2014,never heard anything yet from the CIC till now,are we already on the Passport request stage ? Please let me know …Thank you for your time….

    • MarmitetoMaple says :

      Hi Jason, congrats on paying the RPRF, almost there! If you are required to send in your passport you’ll likely be asked to send it in soon. I didn’t have to as a UK citizen and received my confirmation of PR about 2 months after paying the fee. But if you do have to send it in, it should still be quite quick from here. Fingers crossed!

  25. Jason says :

    Hello Lizzie!! how are things goin?hope you had a great holiday….. it’s me again Jason from the Philippines. it’s almost near end of 4 months after it say’s on my e-cas status

    We started processing your application on September 23,2014

    3rd Line says..

    Medical results have been received

    this 3rd line pop-up after i received e-mail from CIC that i need to pay the RPRF and pay it off and send the receipt in Nova Scotia Cost Recovery

    since after this events, never heard anything back from CIC ,any view on this?
    Wish you can somehow explain what’s next we have to expect….or heard back from CIC Manila Philippines

    Thank you very much Lizzie….., and i appreciate any body that can ease my situation ….

  26. MarmitetoMaple says :

    Hi Jason, great to hear from you! When I went through the process I was also asked to pay my RPFR just after my medical results were received, and then I waited a couple of months. It’s quite normal to have to wait a few months and the waiting time varies quite a lot depending which office it was submitted to. You can check the processing times here:

    Best of luck!

  27. christine says :

    hi lizzie! my husband already paid the rprf feb 07,2015.. do u have any ideas how many months the cic will request our passport? thank u:)

    • MarmitetoMaple says :

      Hi Christine, thanks for the comment and congrats on paying the RFP! Good news is you’re nearly there! It could still be a few months depending where you’re applying from, but hang on in there, you’re close to the end! 🙂

  28. ferdinand jalocon says :

    Hello Lizz…how’s things?…. got an update on my e-cas sometime last week and it says on the fourth line Decision Made. still wondering what’s next, some say’s passport request, if it is a passport request ,,any idea where will cic notify me, will it be in the regular mail? or will also received notification thru e-mail….will it go directly on my representative’s e-mail or mailbox?

    please respond as soon as you are free,just give me peace of mind….

    Thank you very much….


    • MarmitetoMaple says :

      Hi Jason, congrats, that’s great news! I didn’t have to send my passport so I got a letter in the mail about 2 weeks after I saw the Decision Made status online. I’m not sure whether they contact you by mail or email for the passport, but I expect it will be within the next couple of weeks. If you used a representative, it may go to them.

      Whatever happens, it should hopefully happen in the next few weeks so fingers crossed! 🙂

  29. kc says :

    @MarmitetoMaple hello:) i’m just wondering how long did u wait till they sent u ur file number, im going nuts already it’s been four months now since i submitted my CIC application but i dont have any update from them yet T_T

  30. Dee says :

    If spouse doesn’t want to travel to Canada can primary applicant pays only his RPRF fee?????? N include a letter to VO stating reason

    • MarmitetoMaple says :

      Hi Dee, that’s a good question! From what I understand, if your spouse isn’t travelling to Canada they will still have to pay for medicals, background check etc. along with you, and you can identify them as ‘non-accompanying’ which means they won’t be included in your Confirmation of PR and you won’t have to pay the fee for them. There should be somewhere on the application forms to indicate this, but if you can’t find it (or have only just decided the spouse will not be accompanying you) I would call/email your visa office to make sure you follow the right process. Good luck!

  31. Nour says :

    Hi Lizzie,

    I found some good answers here, so I think that you would help me with my question too.
    I received a request for passport for CPC Ottawa, and in this e-mail they simply asked to confirm that my family and maritual statues are not changed from my application, and for step 2 to send my passport to the VO.

    The problem is that I am not in North America, and I replied to their e-mail from 2 weeks ago mentioning that I am not in NA, so that CPC-Ottawa would arrange my visa to be sent to another VO, I didn’t get any response from them for 2 weeks, and they stated a duration of 30 days in their e-mail to send passport

    Should I send it directly to CPC-Ottawa by DHL, and provide a friend’s address in Canada to return the passport to, since they don’t send passports internationally?
    or what should I do now??

    Thanks in advance



    • MarmitetoMaple says :

      Hi Nour,

      Thanks for your comment, I’m glad that this post has helped you through the application process! Unfortunately I’m not sure on this one, and it sounds like time is running out for you to meet the deadline. I would definitely call them to ask. If you can’t get hold of them in time, sending it directly to Ottawa and providing a friend’s address for the return is probably something I would do just to be safe. You don’t want your passport getting lost in the mail!

      Best of luck,


  32. Bipin Mistry says :

    Hi @marmitetomaole
    My timeline is as under
    Applied as a nominated by Nova Scotia for PR,
    Application Received: 29th April 2015 by CIO
    Visa Office: New Delhi India
    Job Offer: Yes
    Job Offer for Spouse: Yes
    Received AOR: 16th June 2015
    Advance Medical Done: 24th July 2015
    Medical Request: 26th August 2015
    RPRF Request: 26th August 2015
    PPR: Waiting
    Do you know how long I have to wait for it?

  33. Eddie says :

    I sent in my application to sponsor my wife on the 26 of October 2015 and I got approved as a sponsor on Dec 31 2016 they started to process her application Feb 16 2016 and I got an email today marc 29th 2016 saying they need the 490$ fee to be paid which I will do tomorrow morning how far along am I ..please any advice or opinions welcome thanks

    • MarmitetoMaple says :

      Hi Eddie, it sounds like things are going great with your application! If you’re paying the fee that’s a really good sign that everything is going well and hopefully coming near the end of the process. Best of luck, hopefully not long now!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: