Released on July 12, 2017, this operational bulletin states that the International Organization for Migration (IOM) service fee that is charged to foreign nationals, Convention refugees and members of the humanitarian and protected persons abroad classes who utilize IOM's assistance in relocating to Canada is being increased to $240 per person (from $180), effective March 1, 2017.
This service charge is passed onto refugees, and there is no limit on the number of service fees per loan. The $10,000 loan cap remains in place, which means that any transportation loan amount in excess of $10,000 will continue to be paid by IOM rather than be billed to the refugee.
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) and IOM are parties to a Memorandum of Understanding on Migration Programs. The Memorandum of Understanding outlines the services that IOM will provide to assist in the movement of refugees, as well as the process for reimbursement to IOM. The services provided by IOM include booking transportation for refugees, obtaining travel documents, conducting medical exams and providing other services as required. A service fee, payable by the refugee, is added to each family's transportation loan to cover IOM's administrative costs associated with the delivery of its services.
Role of Visa Officers
Visa officers will have a role in communicating these changes when they discuss the immigration loan program with resettled refugees at the time of their selection interviews. Should they agree and sign for an immigration loan, the refugees will need to understand that these service fees will be added to their loan, along with other costs related to travelling to Canada. The loan is to be repaid by the family over time once they settle in Canada.