COVID-19: Get updates on the law and legal services on Steps to Justice

Change font size:


  • Increase
  • Decrease
  • Normal

Current Zoom: 100%

Making a humanitarian and compassionate (H&C) application

Step 1: Choose language Step 2: Choose from available formats and options
Available formats and options


In many cases, an H&C application is based on the hardship the applicant would face if they had to leave Canada.

Examples of hardship or difficulties that an applicant might face in their own country could include:

  • a lack of adequate health care
  • poverty
  • discrimination based on religion, gender, or something else
  • laws, practices or customs in a woman's home country that might put her at risk of abuse or social stigma

IRCC cannot look at risks in the same way the Immigration and Refugee Board does when it decides a refugee claim. But the same situation that puts someone at risk may also be a reason for a successful H&C application.

For example, a woman who is at risk because of an abusive spouse in her home country may also be able to show H&C reasons she should not be forced to return to that country.

An immigration lawyer may be able to present her case in a way that shows H&C reasons rather than risk.