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Am I a Refugee If I Have Already Left My Home Country?

A person who was not a refugee when he left his or her country, but who becomes a refugee due to circumstances arising in his or her country of origin during their absence is called a refugee ‘sur place’.

The fact that the individual’s departure from his or her homeland may have been perfectly legal is not relevant. What is required is an assessment of the situation in the country of origin after the individual left it.

Further, a person may become a refugee ‘sur place’ as a result of his own actions, such as associating with refugees already recognized, or expressing his political views in his country of residence.

Even if the Refugee Protection Division determines your account of experiences in your home country, your refugee ‘sur place’ must be considered separately on the evidence relating to the claim.

If there are emerging issues in your home country that cause you fear or danger to return to your country of origin, you may have a refugee ‘sur place’ claim available to you.

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