Ackah Business Immigration Law obtained expedited Canadian Citizenship application processing so our client could participate in the Kendo World Championships as a member of Team Canada.
Our client is a South Korean citizen who came to Canada to study. He began doing Kendo in Korea when he was 10 years old. When he came to Canada in 2006 he immediately joined a Kendo team at the University of Toronto where he was able to meet many of the coaches, players mentors on Team Canada’s Kendo team. While practicing with Team Canada, he earned a fifth-degree black belt and has placed at many different national and international championship events over the years. He is highly regarded and an incredibly skilled Kendo player. As a permanent resident of Canada he is not allowed to compete for Team Canada, as regulations allow only Canadian citizens to compete. The Kendo World Championships are held every 3 years and he was not eligible to compete for Team Canada in 2018. The deadline for the final roster submissions was April 2018.
Our client came to Ackah Law in November 2017, after the Canadian government made changes to the Canadian Citizenship Act, Bill C-6. Previously, applicants for permanent residence had to be physically present in Canada for 4 out of 6 years to be eligible. In October 2017, IRCC changed the permanent resident physical presence regulation to 'you must be physically present in Canada for 3 out of the last 5 years with no minimum number of days per year before applying for citizenship.' This change meant our client became eligible a whole year earlier: under the old rules he would not have been eligible and not been allowed to compete for Team Canada in 2018 and would have had to wait another 3 years to compete at the Kendo World Championships.
As soon as he became eligible to apply for citizenship we submitted the application with a request for urgent expedited processing. We continuously followed up with IRCC: calling IRCC daily, submitting a Case Specific Enquiry as our client's representatives, contacting his MP, and contacting the Minister of Immigration and Citizenship. Our strategy and diligent oversight resulted in the government processing his application very quickly. Normally, citizenship applications take up to 12 months; we were able to have his application expedited and processed in just under 6 months.
As a result of our intervention, our client was able to meet the deadline and become a Canadian citizen one week before the roster deadline and now will compete for Team Canada in September 2018 at the Kendo World Championships.
We are all very excited and thrilled that he received citizenship based on our efforts lobbying on his behalf and our client is over the moon to represent Canada at the World Championships.