If you notice something is amiss with your Express Entry profile after you get your ITA, you have options to avoid losing your chance at permanent residency.
If you were issued an invitation through the Express Entry system, and you find some missing or out-of-date information on your profile, you might have to make a difficult decision in order to stay in good standing with the Canadian government.
Before you get your Invitation to Apply (ITA) you can make changes to your Express Entry profile without explanation. So, it goes without saying it is in your best interest to update your profile as soon as changes happen in your life that would affect your Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score, or eligibility for one of the Express Entry-managed programs.
Once you receive your ITA, your Express Entry profile automatically gets recorded in the Global Case Management System (GCMS). It is up to you, the applicant, to ensure that the information is still correct before you submit your application for permanent residence. Failure to do so may cause significant consequences that affect your plans to move to Canada. If IRCC finds that you have misrepresented yourself, you may be banned from applying for Canadian immigration for five years.
When reviewing your application, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) officers assess all the documents you have submitted in support of your application and issue a decision on your immigration application. The Canadian immigration authorities will verify the completeness of your application, as we as the content of the documents you have provided. If your application is incomplete, there is a high risk that IRCC will return your application, which is not the same as being refused.
Consult an Attorney Before Declining your ITA.
In the event that you cannot provide all the supporting documents needed on your application, you have the option to decline the ITA. There is a difference between declining an ITA and not responding.
When you decline, your profile is still active in the Express Entry pool for as long as it is valid. You can still get an ITA as long as you continue to be eligible for an Express Entry-managed program and should a draw cover your CRS score. In this case you also will maintain the maturity of your profile in the pool. This is import in case more than one candidate has the lowest score in a given Express Entry draw. In such a case the cut-off will be based on the date and time of Express Entry profile submission.
However, if you do not respond in 90 days, your ITA will expire and you will no longer be in the Express Entry pool. If this happens, you can re-enter the pool but you need to submit a new profile, granted you are still eligible for an Express Entry-managed program.
Sometimes, it is not possible to get all of the required documents. In this case, you have the option to send a letter of explanation (LOE) to the government, explaining that you did everything you could to get the documents in time but it was impossible. The government will assess LOEs on a case-by-case basis, and the outcome will be fully at the immigration officer’s discretion.
It can be stressful to decline an ITA because it means going back into the Express Entry pool and waiting to be invited again. There is always the option to try and improve your CRS score to make it more likely that you will be selected again. You could do this in a number of ways, some people try improving their score on their language test, for example, or trying for a Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) nomination, which automatically gets them an additional 600 points.
At the end of the day, it is just important to keep your profile as complete and accurate as you can.