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Author Archive - Henry J. Chang, Blaney McMurtry LLP

Henry J. Chang is a partner in the business immigration group of Blaney McMurtry LLP. A recognized authority in the field of United States and Canadian immigration law, Mr. Chang lectures extensively on the subject in both the United States and Canada. His written works have appeared in numerous nationally and internationally recognized legal publications, including Immigration Law and Procedure, which has been cited in over 300 federal court decisions. Read more

A review of U.S. border crossing issues one month after cannabis legalization

As we are now at the one-month anniversary of cannabis legalization in Canada, it would be an appropriate time to revisit the issue of U.S. border crossings, in the context of cannabis.

 

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Canadian companies should educate their employees prior to marijuana legalization

In order to minimize the risk of employees being barred from the United States, Canadian employers should educate their workforce on the above issues prior to (or soon after) October 17, 2018.

 

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Does the Canada Border Services Agency have the authority to search your electronic devices?

Travellers may feel that searches of their electronic devices at border crossings are an unreasonable violation of their privacy rights. However, they need to be aware that refusing to provide their password can have serious consequences.

 

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Recent changes to impaired driving offenses and their effect on Canada’s immigration laws

Once Bill C-46 becomes effective, even impaired driving offences not involving bodily harm or death will be considered serious criminality under IRPA 36(1).

 

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How the legalization of marijuana will affect your ability to travel to the United States

The legalization of marijuana (both in Canada and in some US states) has created considerable uncertainty for Canadian citizens, Canadian permanent residents, and other foreign nationals.

 

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USCBP updates policy on border searches of electronic devices

Canada USA border crossing

On January 4, 2018, United States Customs and Border Protection (“USCBP”) updated its official policy on border searches of electronic devices. The new policy directive[1] (the “New Directive”) supersedes its prior policy directive (the “Prior Directive), which was issued on August 20, 2009[2]. The New Directive addresses some, but not all, of the issues that arise in relation to border searches of electronic devices.

 

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President Trump’s latest travel ban and its effect on Canadian citizens and permanent residents

On December 4, 2017, in a 7-2 decision the United States Supreme Court lifted the temporary restraining order that had initially blocked President Trump’s latest travel ban.

 

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CETA offers enhanced labour mobility for EU nationals entering Canada

Canada and the European Union (“EU”) commenced their provisional application of the Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (“CETA”) on September 21, 2017.

 

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Notice to TIFF attendees: Watch out for Canada’s immigration laws

As in previous years, the Toronto International Film Festival (“TIFF”) is expected to receive thousands of visitors from around the World. However, many of these visitors are not aware that relatively minor offences can prevent them from entering Canada.

 

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Update on express entry

Since Express Entry began on January 1, 2015, it has been necessary for prospective permanent residents to first receive an Invitation to Apply (“ITA”) before submitting an application for permanent residence under one of the following categories:

 

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How foreign nationals can legally avoid Ontario’s foreign buyer tax

There is no doubt that the NRST (and other Ontario Government initiatives) has caused a significant drop in residential real estate sales. However, it may not have as significant an impact on many foreign nationals.

 

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Government of Canada amends the Citizenship Act

Bill C-6 received royal assent on June 19, 2017 and eases many of the key eligibility requirements for citizenship, including the physical presence requirement and the requirement to demonstrate knowledge of Canada and its official languages. Bill C-6 also eliminates some of the more controversial elements of the Strengthening Canadian Citizenship Act, including the ability to revoke the Canadian citizenship of dual nationals based on national security grounds.

 

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IRCC announces details of global skills strategy

On June 12, 2017, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) announced details of its Global Skills Strategy. First announced in November 2016, the Global Skills Strategy is intended to help promote global investment in Canada and support the Government of Canada’s Innovation and Skills Plan.

 

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Important corporate immigration updates

The following are important corporate immigration changes that have been announced in Canada: Cut-off age for dependent children raised; traveling visa-free to Canada for eligible Bulgarians, Romanians, Brazilians; and conditional permanent residence for spouses and partners eliminated.

 

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Update on Express Entry

As of May 17, 2017, IRCC had issued a total of 62 rounds of ITAs under Express Entry. A summary of these rounds are as follows…

 

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