If you do not go to your refugee protection hearing, the Board will hold a special hearing. You can find the date of your special hearing on the Notice to Appear for a Hearing that you were given at your eligibility interview. The date will be no later than 5 working days after your refugee protection hearing date.
At the special hearing, you should explain why you did not come to your refugee protection hearing. You should try to bring evidence that supports your explanation — for example, hospital records. You should also be prepared to proceed with your refugee protection hearing right away. The Board can either:
- allow you to proceed with your claim, or
- decide that you "abandoned" your claim. This means you lose the right to make a refugee claim.
If the Board finds that you abandoned your claim, get legal help right away. You might be able to reopen the claim or ask the Federal Court to review the decision.
Getting legal help
Applying for refugee status in Canada is complicated. It is easy to make a serious mistake. It is important to try to get legal help. For more information visit: http://refugeehearing.cleo.on.ca/legal-help/