Prevention of Marriage Fraud in Canada

Foreign marriage in Canada has led to many cases of fraud earlier and the government is taking strict measures to keep a check on this now. As the Canadian government has taken strong measures to validate a number of foreign nationals for work and thereby grant them permanent residency, people are taking the easier step of getting married to Canadian residents. However, this is exactly where the fraudulent cases are accruing. There are two main kinds of fraud marriages – one where only one party is aware of the fraudulence and the other where both parents are aware of it.

There are men and women who get married to Canadian nationals with the only purpose of getting an entry in to the country. The Canadian is left in mystery about the fraudulence being conducted and is left regretting the marriage since his or her spouse exploited them. The other case is a marriage of convenience where both the man and woman are aware that they are conducting a fake marriage and the marriage is broken right after they get permanent residence certification. The Canadian government is taking stern measures to prevent the occurrence of both types of marriages. The Canadian immigration office rejects applications for permanent residence if the applicant has only a spouse in the country.

The authenticity of a marriage is tested by Canadian officials on the basis of the answers received to a set of questions pre-determined by them. A round of questions and answers determine the nature of the marriage. Marriage and relationship details about the person such as how many times, if at all, he or she has been married earlier, are checked. Other aspects of the marriage are also checked such as the guests at the wedding, etc. Apart from this, some basic study is done about the individuals such as their social and educational backgrounds, etc. Engaging in a marriage purely for the purpose of getting citizenship of Canada is considered a criminal offence.

The Canadian government has also taken steps to increase awareness regarding marriage fraudulence. The refreshed rules have made it essential for the couple to spend a time of at least 2 years in the marriage from the time of the grant of permanent residence to the foreigner. The reason behind this is the fact that those who have entered into fake marriages will want to walk out immediately after receiving their residence certificate. Canadian governmental authorities thus do not rely solely on foreign authorisation systems but enforce their own checks for ensuring the validity of a marriage.

To know more about foreign marriage in Canada, contact Victor Opara at 416-782-5926.

How Much Should You Charge as a Notary Public?

The services of a notary public are often required to authenticate documents needed for official purposes. The notary public’s signature carries a lot of value and its presence on a document means that the document has been verified and is authentic to the best of his knowledge. Notary service cost is not fixed everywhere nonetheless. Each country has its own set of rules controlling the ideal compensation for notaries. Here are the factors which control notarization costs.

  • State Regulations – This is the highest determining factor as notaries cannot go beyond the legal fees set by the state, at least not if their practice is legal and he or she has a license. Authorities usually have a high amount as notarization cost so that they cannot charge anything beyond that. This leads to some problems for the common man as authentication and verification of documents becomes an expensive process but it protects them from getting cheated. Any notary public who charges more than the state approved amount risks the possibility of having his or her license canceled and facing heavy fines. Information about state fixed notary prices is available at the secretary of state’s office. However, in Ontario and most Canadian provinces, fees of notaries are not regulated by the province or state.
  • Other Services – Other services offered by a notary public are administering of oaths and acknowledgments of the same. For acknowledgments, notaries have to check the document submitted and verify it with the person submitting it and authenticate it by providing their signature and stamp. During oaths, a notary public remains the prime witness and ensures that the person taking the oath is speaking the truth. There are fixed, maximum amounts, decided by the state, which can be charged by the state for these services of the notary public.
  • How to Increase Income – Since there is a limit to notary service cost set by the state laws, notaries public can expect only fixed income per service. However, there is no limit to how many services they can provide. Those keen on making more money from this work should try to get associated and build rapport with companies and individuals who are in need of notary services quite frequently. For example, real estate companies.


There are some calculations which you need to make before asking for a fee or taking up projects of notarization. In order to earn a profit from your work, you need to be calculative as you will need to pay a certain amount to the state before you begin to work. This amount is considered as ramification expense to protect your clients in case of any misconduct. However, this does not apply in the countries where notaries do not provide legal advice. For example, in Canada and the United States, notaries do not provide legal advice.

To know more about notarization cost in Canada, contact Victor Opara at 416-782-5926.

Applying for a Passport in Canada

Applying for a passport in Canada requires you to have at least two months’ time in hand for completion of the entire procedure. Here are the steps you need to follow for successfully completing your Canada passport applications:

  • Search for the passport Canada website on the internet and get hold of an application. Those of you who are 16 years or older will need a PPTC 153 form while those under 16 will need the PPTC 155 form. If you are looking for a passport renewal, then you can download the PPTC 054 form from the same website.
  • You next need to fil up the form completely by following the directions given on the website. Here, you need to give your personal details such as name, address, phone number, place of birth, state if you have any Canadian travel documents and sign the declaration of guarantor. There are three pages of which all need to be filled and signed within a year of submission.
  • You will need photos to submit along with the application so it is best to hire a professional for the purpose. The photos will be accepted only if they show your face in uniform lighting, are printed on photographic paper, with a size of 2-3/4 inches height and 2 inches width. The name, address and the date of taking the photograph must also be mentioned at the back.
  • Those born in Canada need to furnish their Canadian citizenship and Birth Certificate. You need to write the date of issue and the registration or certificate number of this one on your passport application form. Those born outside Canada need to provide the certificate number and date of issue of their Canadian citizenship, the naturalization and retention of Canadian citizenship.
  • There has to be an additional document which supports your identity with the application. The name you write on the application, with the spelling, must be the same as the one on the document you submit. Commonly used documents include health care cards, driving license, etc. You need to submit original documents but they will surely be returned intact.
  • If you have received any Canadian travel document in the past five years, you should include the same.
  • The application form mentions a fee which you need to submit through credit or debit card or certified cheque or money order. This is a non-refundable fee.


Finally, you need to submit the application, either through post or by delivering it in person to the passport office.

To know more about passport applications in Canada, contact Victor Opara at 416-782-5926.

All About Travel Permission Letter for Minors

A child under the age of 18, traveling outside Canada or from the U.S. or elsewhere to Canada, must be accompanied by a travel permission letter for minors. This is applicable to any child traveling with one parent or both, grandparent/s or other guardian and other family member or friends. The permission letter must be issued by both parents of the child where the child is travelling without both parents. However, if one of the parents is travelling with the child, only the non-accompanying parent needs to issue the letter. The Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade states that foreign officials keep a strict eye on children who are crossing international borders. Adults traveling with the child need to carry proper identification documents which will be required when entering Canada or other countries where they are going. These documents will also be checked by Canadian authorities when you return to the country with the child.

The main purpose of this travel consent letter Canada is to increase safety of children during traveling and more awareness regarding children’s rights which was raised by the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction. This treaty is still in effect when it comes to prevention of child abduction in over 80 countries which includes Canada, Mexico and the United States of America.

Stories of child abduction have not yet diminished from the news and this is why Canadian travelers have been asked to carry their travel permission letter for minors when departing Canada or returning to Canada from elsewhere. Another factor which calls for the need of these documents is health. Medical professionals have been prevented from providing health care facilities to travellers unless presented with proper documents.

Teenage groups leaving Canada for leisure trips and tours also need to furnish the same documents, even if they are going with a school or institute. It applies to sports teams travelling for matches and students going abroad to attend academic programs. The need for such letters is not just limited to land or air travel but apply to cruise journeys as well. Such concerns apply not only to air and land travel, but to cruise travel as well. Canadian Tourism Commission officials, including Canadian customs officers, responsible for inspection of visitors, may ask for a notarized statement from both parents if and when they see that a child under the age of 18 is travelling alone or with adults. In fact, carriers which take children without these papers will be fined.

To know more about travel permission letter for minors in Canada, contact Victor Opara at 416-782-5926.

All About Statutory Declaration of Identity

Known as ‘statdec’ in short, a statutory declaration of identity is required when there are not adequate documents for proving the identity of refugee or immigrant claimants. The process evolved from the Aden Agreement of 2000 and was codified in the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act.

The statutory documents which will help you to confirm your identity are:

  • A guideline to use the statutory declaration
  • The client form
  • The individual or third-party form


A statutory declaration of confirming identity can also be created with help from a reliable organization which will vouch for having prior knowledge about the refugee claimant and will be able to verify his or her identity.

A statutory declaration of identity is a sworn statement. To put it in simple words, it is a statement related to the identity of undocumented refuges who are applying for permanent residency certificates in Canada. The Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA) or The Immigration Act requires two sworn declarations for every applicant who is bereft of documents proving his or her identity. One of these has to be from the applicant himself or herself, that is the client. The other one should be from someone who was aware of the applicant’s identity before he or she came to Canada or can be from a reliable organisation who can swear about the applicant’s identity.

However, it does not have to be as complicated as it appears to be. The statutory declaration forms are quite self-explanatory. You can also make a statutory declaration of identity in a way other than this but your documents must fulfil all the requirements mentioned in the Aden judgement. These declarations have to be signed by someone who is authorised by law to administer an oath, such as a notary public, a lawyer or a legal clinic. The IRPA also lists some credible organisations which can sign statutory declarations. If you are feeling nervous, you can simply seek the help of a lawyer and ask for his advice. The papers of statutory declaration of identity do not have to be very formal but should simply convey your story, although it is advisable to have it done professionally. Forms for these declarations are available at legal clinics and also on the internet as PDF files. You can look up samples of filled up forms and papers on the internet before starting to work on yours.

To Know more about statutory declaration of identity, contact Victor Opara at 416-782-5926.