In Canada, a person can make a claim for refugee protection on a well-founded fear of persecution based on race, religion, nationality, political opinion, membership of a particular social group and those at risk of torture or cruel/unusual punishment.
Initially, an officer interviews an individual making a refugee claim, and then the claimant must attend a hearing with a public servant. The claimant will then have 15 days to file his/her Basis of Claim Form. If unsuccessful at the hearing, the claimant will have 15 days to make an appeal to the Refugee Appeal Division and will have 30 days to file an Appellant’s Record. It is important to seek counsel at an early stage in order to build the best case possible.
If an individual is unsuccessful at the Refugee Appeal Division, they must file an Application for Leave and Judicial Review within 15 days of receiving the negative decision or 60 days if received from a Canadian visa post abroad.