GCMS Notes Comprehensive Guide | Understand, Interpret, Sample, Rea..

GCMS Notes Comprehensive Guide: Understand, Interpret, Sample [2021]

In this article, we’ll answer all your GCMS notes questions, from how to understand and read GCMS notes to how to interpret GCMS notes and how to order GCMS Notes! We also added a sample GCMS notes so you can familiarize yourself and know what to expect from your IRCC (CIC previously) GCMS notes. Let’s get on with it.


Table Of Contents


So you’ve applied for Canada immigration, and now you have to wait (the difficult part) for the decision. Weeks can run into months and months into years before you get a decision. During this long wait, it can be frustrating not to know how your application is progressing or if there is an issue with it.

Maybe you received a refusal on your application after the long waiting period and what’s worse is you cannot say for sure what led to that decision by the IRCC visa officer. 

Well, this is where your GCMS notes come in. Ordering GCMS notes is the one way you can get detailed information on your application and address any problem.

On the other hand, GCMS notes can be complex to decipher. This brings us to three common questions we often get asked: How to understand GCMS notes? How to read GCMS notes? How to interpret GCMS notes? Is there a sample GCMS notes? This comprehensive guide will answer these questions and show you what sample GCMS notes look like in the corresponding section to ease your learning process.

Read on!    


What Exactly are GCMS Notes?

The first step in knowing how to understand GCMS notes is knowing what GCMS is.

GCMS stands for Global Case Management System. Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) use this system to process citizenship and immigration applications.

It contains detailed information of each applicant’s file, documents received by the IRCC, correspondence to and from IRCC, comprehensive notes made by the officers reviewing the file, and other vital information.

GCMS notes are the go-to for applicants looking for an accurate and all-inclusive outlook of their IRCC file. With your GCMS notes, you can get an explicit knowledge of your Canada visa/immigration application and turn this knowledge into practical steps to increase your immigration/visa approval chances. 

The notes a visa officer makes when processing applicant files depend on the individual application’s issues, type of visa applied, and the visa office in charge of the application.

For instance, skilled worker applications will be appropriately checked to ensure that they possess the education and experience they need for their chosen profession. This process can involve checking educational transcripts and confirming employment references.  

The official list of codes that the IRCC (Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada) uses when processing GCMS files is The Codes List. The immigration officer enters these codes in the GCMS system in the English language (or French for Quebec immigrants).

Some of the codes used in the GCMS file may be difficult to interpret. Not to worry, we’ll cover it in this article.


Who Can Apply for GCMS Notes?

If you answer “Yes” to any of the following questions, then you should order your GCMS notes:

  • Was your Canada immigration application (visitor/tourist visa, study permit, express entry, etc) rejected and you want to be sure of what went wrong before you reapply?
  • Perhaps you just want to confirm the documents or information submitted for your visa application or your visa status?
  • Has IRCC invited you for an interview or requested more papers, and you want to know why?
  • Maybe your visa/immigration application is delayed? 

If you fall into any of the categories above, then you need your GCMS notes. Good thing you are on the right track!

Immigration applications can be:

  • Temporary residence applications: Work Permit, Study Permit, Tourist or Visitor Visa, etc.
  • Permanent residence applications: Atlantic Immigration Pilot, Family Sponsorship, Express Entry, Start-up visa, etc.

Basically, if you’ve ever applied to IRCC in the past, then IRCC indeed has a GCMS file on you that you can ask for.


How do You Apply for GCMS Notes?

You have to be a Canadian Citizen, Permanent Resident (PR) or an individual or company in Canada to apply for GCMS notes. If you are not, you have to go through a Permanent Resident or a Canadian Citizen representative, such as CanadaWiz. We will help you apply for an Access to Information Act GCMS notes request. This is done online in 3 simple steps.

How-to-Order-GCMS-Notes-from-Canada-IRCC-Pin

The Access to Information Act is a federal law that allows individuals to access their information from the federal government. Your GCMS notes will be issued under this Act. 

LEARN MORE -> How to Order GCMS Notes from IRCC (formerly CIC) – 3 Simple Steps!


What do You Need to Apply for GCMS Notes?

To apply for GCMS notes, you need these two numbers: 

  • Your application number – You must provide this when applying for your GCMS notes.
  • Your UCI (Unique Client Identifier) number – Not mandatory, but you need it for more accurate processing of your request. 

Now let’s explain how you can find these two numbers: 


The Application Number 

As soon as you apply with IRCC, your application number will be created. You could have multiple application numbers if you filed several immigration applications. Your application number begins with one letter and then some digits. They are categorized this way: 

  • If they begin with E or B or F or EP (e.g., E01234566, B01234566, F01234566, EP01234566), they are permanent residence applications.
  • If they begin with S (e.g., S01234566), they are study permit applications.
  • If they begin with W (e.g., W01234566), they are work permit applications.
  • If they begin with V (e.g., V01234566), they are visitor visa applications.

The UCI Number

You can only get your UCI number after the processing of your application has commenced. Unlike the application number, you only get one UCI number even if you file more than one application.

The UCI number is either an eight-digit number separated by one hyphen (1234-5678) or a ten-digit number separated by two hyphens (12-3456-7890).

The difference between the application number and the UCI number is that the application number is application-specific, while the UCI number is client-specific. 

For instance, you can get your application number for express entry application immediately you enter into the applicants’ pool. You can find it easily on IRCC’s correspondence and your online IRCC profile.

On the other hand, for the UCI number, you will get it in your online profile around 30 days after your Express Entry application’s processing has commenced.


When Should You Order GCMS Notes?

You can order GCMS notes any time you want, for any reason whatsoever. You actually do not need any reason to order your GCMS notes. If you are as curious as myself, you may simply just want to have a look at your file.

You can also order your GCMS notes after applying for permanent residence or after processing a temporary residence visa (TRV), and IRCC has reached a positive or negative decision. If IRCC’s decision is unfavourable, your GCMS notes will explain in details why the immigration officer refused your application.  

For permanent residence applications (PR) such as Express Entry, a good time to order your GCMS notes is after the R10 completeness checks stage. R10 means Regulation 10 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act.

It is the phase where IRCC checks and confirms that all your information and documentation are complete when processing your application. 

Usually, this stage gets completed within 30 days of your application to IRCC. The best time to order your GCMS notes for PR applications would be around the second to third month after your application.  

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When Do You Receive Your GCMS Notes?

The Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) respond to an Access to Information Act request within 30 days. However, IRCC may extend this period for limited and specific reasons, which are listed in Section 9 of the Access to Information Act and Section 15 of the Privacy Act. For example, if:

  • the request is for many records, or
  • the request requires them to search through many documents, and meeting the initial time limit would interfere with the government institution’s operations.
  • Consultations are needed to ensure compliance with the request and thus it wouldn’t be realistic for the request to be completd within the original time limit.

IRCC will notify you if the time extension exceeds 30 days. You should generally get your GCMS notes within 30 to 40 days, but it may take up to another 30 to 60 days in some situations. There is no way to hasten the processing time, not even by hiring a lawyer or consultant.

Now that you know the basics, let’s move on to how to understand GCMS notes and show you how to interpret GCMS notes when you get them.


How to Understand, Read, and Interpret GCMS Notes

DO-IT-YOURSELF (D.I.Y)

Are you wanting to read and understand your GCMS notes but not sure where to start? Read on! We have made everything simple so you can easily do it yourself.

DONE-FOR-YOU (D.F.Y)

Want an expert to help interpret your GCMS notes?

When you get your GCMS notes in the form of a PDF file, begin reading it from the last page. The most recent comments from Canada immigration officers are usually located at the end of the GCMS notes document.

Therefore, you’ll be able to see the latest update on your file first. After reading the comment, you can then proceed in reverse order by reading the notes from the bottom to the top.

For instance, if you’ve been invited for an interview with an immigration officer, you’d see it in the recent comment. When you scroll up, you may find a reason for the invitation. 

Another example is in the case of visa applications refusal; you can always find the reasons for the refusal at the bottom of the document. Studying these reasons would assist you in preparing for a re-submission or an appeal.   

GCMS notes are full of abbreviations, acronyms, and specific terminologies, and many of them are not obvious. For instance, it is typically clear that PA represents principal applicant, but most people wouldn’t know COR means country of residence. This is one of the aspects that makes how to understand GCMS notes a little tricky, but you can get past them.

To help you know how to interpret your GCMS notes, we’ll cover what the GCMS notes contain page by page and interpret them.

GCMS notes can cover more than 200 pages, depending on how complex or long the application processing was. The notes can be divided into 17 sections. You can’t know how to understand GCMS notes without a detailed interpretation of each of these sections.

Let’s get into them!


#1. How to Understand GCMS Notes – Application Section 

APPLICATION: This section covers the summary of the application

Created Date: The date IRCC received the application.

Created by:    Immigration officer’s code name, for instance MC23456. 

Updated Date: The date or time the application was last updated. 

Updated by: Immigration officer’s code name, for instance MC23456. 

Primary Office: This is the office that will issue your PPR (passport request). It’s the local embassy if you’re applying outside Canada.            

Secondary Office:  This is the office that will evaluate your application.

App#: Immigration application file number. It begins with a letter and then 9 numbers.

App Status: Application status, either closed or open. 

App Status Reason: The reason for the above status, either In-Progress, Approved, or Refused.

Received Date: Date when the primary office received the application.

Received Via: On-line or Mail (How the Primary Office got the application). 

Lock-In Date: Date when IRCC opened the application. 

Category: Immigration category’s code (SW1-FED for Federal Skilled Worker, FC1 for Family Class, TRV for Temporary Residence Visa, etc).

Sub-Category: This space is usually left blank

Group Name:  This space is usually left blank

Group#: This space is usually left blank

Special Program(s): This space is usually left blank

Correspond Lang: Correspondence language, either English or another language.

Interview Lang: English or other language. It could be left blank if no interview is needed.

Cost Recovery: Deferred, Complete, etc. 

RPRF:  (Right of Permanent Residence Fee) Complete, Not Applicable, Outstanding, Deferred, etc.

Overpayment: Yes or No

Loan Warrant#:  Usually left blank 

Restricted Notes:  Yes or No

Prospective App Delete Date:  Date application was withdrawn, if applicable.

Preferred Correspondence Channel: Mail or Online

Name: Principal applicant’s name

DOB: Principal applicant’s date of birth (yyyy/mm/dd)

# of Client: Number of applicants (includes dependents and principal applicant). 

# of Potential Visas: Number of visas that will be issued (depends on the number of clients).

Province of Destination: The landing destination declared in the application

City of Destination:  As stated in the application. 

CSQ File#: CSQ i.e. Certificat de Sélection du Québec file number (if applicable).

FOSS Doc#:

Associated App:

Travel Doc Expiry: The date travel document will stop being valid (yyyy/mm/dd)

# of Entries: Number of times a temporary visa holder is allowed to enter the country within the given time frame.

Stay/Program – From date:

Stay/Program – To date:

Travel Itinerary:

FAMILY CLASS SPONSORSHIP

SPR Correspond Lang: The correspondence language with Sponsor. Could be English, or another language 

CSC Date:

If eligible:

Misrepresentation:

Family Size:

SA’s Met for:

Status:

REFUGEE

Processing Priority:

Financial Support:

Access Via:

Referral #:

ECONOMIC

HRSDC File#:

Available Funds (CAD):  funds you stated in your application

Net Worth (CAD):

Sub Eval:

Facilitator:

Ministerial Instruction Criteria:

Ministerial Instruction:

PNC INFORMATION

PNC#:  Your Provincial Nomination Letter Number, if relevant

Issuance Date: Date provincial nomination letter was issued, if relevant

Valid To:  Date provincial nomination letter expires, if relevant 

Stream:  Your nominated provincial stream, if relevant

Other Stream Description:

ASSESSMENTS

Eligibility: This is the application summary. Could be Not Started, Calculation In Progress, Calculate, Review Required, Met, or Passed.

Security:  Not Started, Passed, or just left blank.  

HIRV:  Not Started, Passed, In Progress, or just left blank

Criminality:  Not Started, In Progress, Passed, or Cancelled

Org Crime:  Not Started, In Progress, Passed or left blank

Medical:  Passed, Failed, Complete, Cancelled, or Not Started

Misrepresentation: Started, Not Started, Complete

Info Sharing:  Complete or Not Started

Other Reqs:

Final: The general assessment decision, whether Refused, Approved, or left blank

PAPER FILE

Office:

#:

Location: Immigration office

APPLICATION ASSIGNMENT

Assigned To: Immigration officer’s code name

Assigned By: Immigration officer’s code name

Due Date:

Usually, there are three other sub-sections where you can find important information about, SPECIAL PROGRAM, and MINISTERIAL INSTRUCTIONS, GROUP NAME, SECONDARY OFFICE(S), LOAN WARRANT#, if relevant. However, they are usually blank. 


#2. How to Read GCMS Notes – Client Details Section

CLIENT DETAILS: This section has each applicant’s details. 

CLIENT DETAILS: 1 – For sponsored person or Principal Applicant

Created Date: Date IRCC received the application|

Create By: Immigration officer’s code name, for instance, BA23456 

Updated Date: Date when the file was updated

Updated By: Immigration officer’s code, for instance BA23456

Client/Party: Principal Applicant (PA)

UCI/Party ID: Unique Client Identifier (UCI) number or Party ID

Relationship: Relationship to Principal Applicant such as Spouse, Common-law partner, Parent, Child, etc.  

Other Relationship Desc:

Acc: Accompanying common-law partner or spouse, whether Yes, No, or N/A

Name:  Principal Applicant or Sponsored Person’s name

Gender: Male or Female

DOB: Principal Applicant’s date of birth

DEP Type:

Dep Type Other Desc:

Effective Date: Date IRCC opened the application

Expiry Date:

Disassoc Reason:  

Other Disassoc Desc:   

Counterfoil Required: Yes or No

Security: In Progress, Not Started, Passed or left blank 

HIRV: In Progress, Not Started, Passed or left blank 

Criminality: In Progress, Not Started, Passed 

Medical: Not Started, Failed, or Passed

Misrepresentation:  

Min Relief – Security:   

Min Relief – HIRV:   

Min Relief – Org Crime:   

Citizenship: Principal Applicant’s country of citizenship

CoR:Principal: Applicant’s  country of origin

Place of Birth (City/Town): Principal Applicant’s birth city

Country of Birth: Principal Applicant’s birth country

Marital Status: Married, Conjugal, Common law, Single/Never married

Country of Refuge:

Sponsor Length (months):

Searched By: Immigration officer’s code

Searched Date:

Travel Doc #: Principal Applicant’s passport number 

Travel Doc Expiry Date: Principal Applicant’s passport expiry date

Travel Doc Country of Issue: Country where Principal Applicant’s passport was issued

Official Language: English or another language 

Can Communicate English: Yes/No

Can Communicate French: Yes/No

Official Language Proficiency Test: Yes/No

# of Years of Education: Number of years of postsecondary education 

Level of Education:  

NOC: National Occupational Classification(NOC) code

Occupation: Principal applicant’s occupation

Telephone #:

Fax #:

E-mail:

BIOMETRICS

IRCC #: Your biometrics number 

Assessment: Required, Complete

Other Description:

Info: Received

Review:

REFUGEE DETERMINATION

Determination Decision:

Determined by:

Determination Date:

Reference #:

IRB Office:

CSQ INFORMATION- For applicants with Québec Selection certificate (Certificat de Sélection du Québec)

Individual Ref#:

Issuance Date:

Valid To:

ADDRESS

Type: Address Type (Mailing)

Country:

Apt/Unit#:

Street #:

Street Address:

Street Address2:

PO Box:

City/Town:

Province/State:

District:

Postal Code:

N.B: CLIENT DETAILS: 2 is for sponsors and dependents. It has the exact sub-sections as CLIENT DETAILS 1. The number of CLIENT DETAILS subsections depends on the number of sponsors or dependents.


#3. How to Interpret GCMS Notes – Party Details Section 

PARTY DETAILS This section contains details of your representative or immigration consultant if any.

Created Date:

Created By:

Updated Date:

Updated By:

Client/Party:

UCI/Party ID:

Relationship:

Other Relationship Desc:

Acc:

Name:

Gener:

DOB:

Effective Date:

Expiry Date:

Disassoc Reason:

Other Disassoc Descrip:

AUTHORIZED REPRESENTATIVE

Status:

Province/Territory:

Membership #:

Expiry Date:

ADDRESS

Type:

Country:

Apt/Unit #:

Street #:

Street Address:

Street Address 2:

PO Box:

City/Town:

Province/State:

District:

Postal Code:

Telephone #:

Fax #:

E-mail:


#4. How to Understand GCMS Notes – Eligibility Section 

ELIGIBILITY This section has details on the eligibility assessment status 

ELIGIBILITY ASSESSMENT: 1 (For Express Entry applicants, this part will be blank)

Created Date: Date the file was created 

Created By: Immigration officer’s code, (e.g BA23456)

Update Date: Date the file was updated

Updated By: Immigration officer’s code, (e.g BA23456)

UCI: Unique Client Identifier (UCI) number 

Family Name: Principal Applicant’s surname

Given Name: Principal Applicant/Sponsored person’s given name. 

Type: Selection, Eligibility, etc.

Status: In Progress, Not Started, Passed

Status Updated by: Immigration officer’s code (e.g., BA23456) 

Status Date: The date of the status update

Updated By: Immigration officer’s code, (e.g., BA23456)

Due Date: Bring forward date (the date the immigration officer will look at the file again) 

Assigned To:   Immigration officer’s code (e.g., BA23456) 

Assigned Date: The date the immigration officer was assigned the file

Assigned By: Immigration officer’s code (e.g., BA23456)

Activity #:

Total Points:

This section usually has these six sub-sections, i.e., WORK EXPERIENCE, PNC DETAILS (i.e., provincial nomination), PROVINCIAL ENDORSEMENT LETTER, LANGUAGE(S), EDUCATION, and JOB OFFER. However, for express entry candidates, they are usually left blank. The only exception is PNC DETAILS for applicants who are Provincial Nominees.


#5. How to Understand GCMS Notes – EE Eligibility Section 

EE ELIGIBILITY – This section is only applicable to Express Entry applicants

Language(s)

Languages: 1

UCI: The Unique Client Identifier (UCI) number 

Relationship: Common-law Partner or Spouse (if it’s language results of a common-law partner or spouse). It’s left blank if it’s the language results of Principal Applicant. 

Test Type: Type of test taken (IELTS, TCF, TEF, CELPIP)

Test Version:

Test Result Date:  Date of the test results

Test Date: Test date

Test Official Language:  First or Second Official Language

Speaking: Speaking ability score

Listening: Listening ability score

Reading: Reading ability score

Writing: Writing ability score

Certificate #: Certificate number of test results 

Test PIN:  

Status: Received or Obsolete

Source: e-app

Status Updated by: Usually “EAIEAPP.” System update (not manual update by an immigration officer

Status Updated Date:  Date of Status update 

Languages: 2 (etc.)

Same data as Language(s): Follows the same format as 1 above but contains other language test results or updates.

EMPLOYMENT HISTORY

Employment History: 1

​UCI: Unique Client Identifier (UCI) number 

Relationship: Common-law Partner or Spouse if it’s the work experience of a common-law partner or spouse. It’s left blank if it’s work experience of Principal Applicant 

Primary Occupation NOC: National Classification Occupation (NOC) code

From: Date work experience began

To: Date work experience ended if it’s not current 

Ongoing: N (no), or Y (yes)

Country:  Country you got work experience 

NOC: NOC code (National Occupation Classification)

Employer: Employer’s name

Job Title: The job title

Status: Received or Obsolete

Source: e-app

Status Updated by: Usually EAIEAPP. System update (not manual update by an immigration officer)

Status Update Date: Date of status update

Province/Territory:  Canadian province or territory if the work experience was in Canada

City/Town: City or town work experience was gained

Hours per Week: Number of hours spent working per week 

Working Legally: Yes, or No. It’s left blank if work experience is outside Canada

Work Permit Category: Work permit type if work experience is inside Canada 

Self Employed: No, or Yes

Studying Full Time at Same Time: No, or Yes

Primary Occupation NOC: NOC i.e., National Occupation Classification  code

Employment History: 2 (etc.)

Same data as Employment History:  Follows the same format as 1 above but contains other work experience or updates.

EDUCATION

Education: 1

UCI: Unique Client Identifier (UCI) number

Relationship: Spouse or “Common-law Partner if it’s spouse or common-law partner’s education. It’ll be blank if it’s Principal Applicant’s education.

From: Date of commencement of studies

To: Date of conclusion of studies

Country: Country of study

Canadian Level of Education: Level of education. It’s left blank if studies weren’t in Canada

School:  School’s name

Result:   Not completed, Diploma, Certificate, or Degree

Canadian Credential: Yes or No

Full Time/Part Time: Either Full-Time or Part-Time

Status:   Received or Obsolete

Source:  e-app

ECA Level of Education: Bachelor’s or 3yr post-sec, Masters or 1st prof degree, or Doctorate etc.

Status Updated By:  Usually EAIEAPP.  System update (not manual update by an immigration officer)

Status Updated Date: Date of status update

Ongoing: N (no), or Y (yes) 

Completed Years of Study: Years of study

Field of Study: Arts/Humanities/Social Science, Business/Mgmt/Marketing, etc. 

Foreign Level of Education: Bachelor’s or 3yr post-sec, Masters or 1st prof degree, Doctorate etc. 

City/Town:  City or town of study

Province/State:  Canadian province or territory of studies, if applicable

ECA #:   ECA i.e. Education Credential Assessment number

ECA Issuing Organization: Organization issuing the ECA i.e. World Education Services, etc.

ECA Issue Date: The date the Education Credential Assessment (ECA) was issued.

DLI Name: Name of Designated Learning Institution (DLI) if studies was in Canada. If not, space will be blank 

ESL or FSL Study: “Yes” if English is the Second Language i.e. ESL, or if French is the Second Language i.e. FSL. “No,” if neither.

Recognized Institution: Yes or No

Studying Under Award:  Yes or No

Education: 2 (etc.)

Same data as Education:  Follows the same format as 1 above but contains other education credentials or updates.

EE ELIGIBILITY Section also contains these four other sub-sections:

  • JOB OFFERS
  • OTHER CANDIDATE INFO: Details about family members in Canada. 
  • PNC DETAILS: Information about provincial nomination.
  • RESEARCH: Answers provided to voluntary research questions asked while creating the Express Entry profile.

#6. How to Interpret GCMS Notes – Admissibilities Section

 ADMISSIBILITIES – This section goes into security, criminality, biometrics and medical checks.

Security – Your background check. It involves several agencies like the INTERPOL, CSIS etc.

Security: 1

Created Date: The date the file was created

Created By: Immigration officer’s code e.g. BA12345

Update Date: The date the file was updated

Updated By: Immigration officer’s code, e.g., BA12345

UCI:  Unique Client Identifier (UCI) number 

Family Name:  Family name/Surname of Principal Applicant, Spouse, etc.

Given Name: Name of Principal Applicant/Sponsored Person, Spouse, etc. 

Type: Security

Status: In Progress, Not Started, or Passed

Validity Date: blank space

Status Updated by: Immigration officer’s code, e.g., BA12345

Status Updated Date: The date of status update

Assigned By: Immigration officer’s code, e.g., BA12345

Assigned To:  Immigration officer’s code e.g. BA12345

Due Date:  Bring forward date (date the immigration officer will look at the file again) 

Activity #:  

Security: 2 (etc.)

Same data as Security: It follows the same format as 1 above but it’s for the other family members added in the application.

Criminality – Checks for criminal records done with the PPC(Police Clearance Certificates) 

Criminality: 1

Created Date:  The date the file was created 

Created By:  Immigration officer’s code e.g. BA12345 

Update Date:  The date the file was updated

Updated By: Immigration officer’s code e.g., BA23456

UCI: Unique Client Identifier (UCI) number 

Family Name:  Surname/Family name of Principal Applicant, Spouse, etc.

Given Name: Principal Applicant or Sponsored person’s given name

Type: Criminality

Status: In Progress, Not Started, or Passed

Validity Date: 2 years post Created Date 

Status Updated by:  Immigration officer’s code e.g. BA12345

Status Updated Date: The date of status update

Assigned By: Immigration officer’s code e.g., BA23456

Assigned To: Immigration officer’s code e.g. BA23456

Due Date:  Bring forward date (the date an immigration officer will look at the file again)

Criminality: 2 (etc.)

Same data as Criminality: The same trend as in 1 above, but it’s for other family members in the application.

MEDICAL –

Results gotten from the medical exam

Medical: 1

​Created Date: The date the file was created

Created By:  Immigration officer’s code e.g., BA23456

Update Date:  Date of file update 

Updated By:   Immigration officer’s code e.g. BA12345

UCI: Unique Client Identifier (UCI) number 

Family Name: Principal Applicant or Sponsored person’s Surname

Given Name:  Principal Applicant or  Sponsored person’s given name

Type:  Medical

Status: In Progress, Not Started, or Passed

Validity Date:  1 year post medical exam date 

Status Updated by:  Immigration officer’s code, e.g., BA12345

Status Updated Date:  The date of status update

Assigned By:   Immigration officer’s code e.g. BA12345

Assigned To:   Immigration officer’s code, e.g., BA12345

Due Date: Bring forward date (the date an immigration officer will look at the file again)

Activity #:  

IME #:  IME i.e., Immigration Medical Exam number 

UMI:  UMI i.e., Upfront Medical Identification number

Assessed For:  All

IME Status:  Assessed

IME Status Reason:  Granted

RMO:  Regional Medical Office (It’s usually left blank)

M Profile:  Medical code assigned after your medical exam was assessed 

Description:  Description of medical code description

S Profile: Surveillance code assigned after your medical exam was assessed 

Description:  Description of surveillance code 

MOF Rationale Exists: Yes or No (MOF = Medical Observations & Furtherance)

MOF Review:  This is left blank if the above answer is No

Valid Until: 1 year after date of medical exam

IMM Type:  This is the application EDE i.e. Excessive Demand Exempt. It’s either “ EDE” or “Non-EDE.” 

UMI Type: Worker etc. 

Expected Date of Delivery:  Expected delivery date if Principal Applicant or Spouse is pregnant. [Read more about delivering in Canada here].

Medical: 2 (etc.)

Same data as Medical: Follows the same trend as 1 above but for other family members in the application.

Info Sharing – Request made to a country that is part of bilateral agreements to give any relevant information on the applicant

Info Sharing: 1

Created Date:  The date the file was created 

Created By:  Immigration officer’s code e.g. BA12345

Update Date:  Date of file update |

Updated By:  Immigration officer’s code e.g. BA12345

UCI:   Unique Client Identifier (UCI) number 

Family Name:  Principal Applicant or Sponsored person’s Surname

Given Name:  Principal Applicant or Sponsored person’s given name

Client/Party:   Principal Applicant (PA) or Dependent (DEP)

Relationship:  Spouse or Common-law Partner if it’s info-sharing of a spouse or common-law partner. If it’s info-sharing of Principal Applicant, it’ll be left blank.

Type: Biometric – FCC or Biographic

Partner:  AUS, GBR, USA, NZL

Status:  No Record Trace (NRT),  Exempt – Member – Partner CIT, Complete, or Complete – Not Reviewed

Validity Date:  

Status Updated by:    Immigration officer’s code e.g. BA12345 

Status Updated Date: The date of status update

Assigned To: Immigration officer’s code e.g. BA23456 

Assigned By:  Immigration officer’s code e.g. BA12345 

Due Date: Bring forward date (the date an immigration officer will look at the file again)

Activity #:  

Correction Ref #:  Usually left blank

Correction Date:  Usually left blank 

Urgent:  yes (Y) or no (N)

Info Sharing: 2 (etc.)

Same data as Info Sharing: Follows the same trend as 1 above but for other family members of the family in the application and other types of info sharing.

The ADMISSIBILITIES also contain these 4 subsections: HIRV ( Human and International Rights Violation), ORGANIZED CRIME, MISREPRESENTATION, MINISTERIAL RELIEF. They are usually left blank, but if applicable, they can contain information.


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#7. How to Understand GCMS Notes – Finalize Application Section 

 FINALIZE APPLICATION

Document Issuance

This sub-section will contain with any document sent after the applicant’s approval. If the application is still being processed, it will be left blank. 

Refusal Grounds

This sub-section will contain any information and reasoning concerning your application’s refusal.  If your application is still being processed, it will be left blank. 


#8. How to Read GCMS Notes – Correspondence Section 

CORRESPONDENCE

Outgoing

This sub-section contains comprehensive information on any request, document, or communication, coming from IRCC to the applicant.

OUTGOING: 1

Created Date:

Created By:

Updated Date:

Updated By:

Create Office: The local embassy

UCI #:

Request to Issue: Letter

Document Type: Acknowledgement of Receipt (AOR)

Status: Sent

Assigned To: Immigration officer’s code 

Assigned By: Immigration officer’s code 

Due Date:

All Rec’d: Yes or No

Via:

Via Details:

Name: Name of Principal applicant or Sponsored person

Status Updated by: Immigration officer’s code 

Status Updated Date:

Sent By: Immigration officer’s code

Sent Date:

Printed By:

Printed Date:

ITEM(S) REQUESTED

ITEM(S) REQUESTED: 0

ATTACHMENTS

ATTACHMENTS: 0

Incoming

This sub-section contains comprehensive information on any request, document, or communication, that IRCC receives from the applicant.

INCOMING: 1

Created Date:

Created By:

Updated Date:

Updated By:

Create Office: The local embassy

Item: Travel Documents/Passport

Item For: PA i.e. Primary applicant

Comments:

Due Date:

Status: Started or Not started

Via:

Via Details:

Received By:

Received Date:

Replied By:

Replied Date:

Status Updated By: Immigration officer’s code 

Status Updated Date:

Letter ID:

#9. Appeals and Litigation Section 

APPEALS AND LITIGATION

Immigration Appeal Division (IAD)

This sub-section only contains information on any immigration appeal application. 

Litigation

This sub-section will only contain details of any litigation the applicant brings forward against IRCC. 

#10. Other Reqs Section 

OTHERS REQS

Humanitarian & Compassionate (H&C)

This sub-section contains information on any H&C application.

A39-A41

This sub-section only contains information on any inadmissibility grounds under Financial grounds (A39), and Non-compliance with the Act or the Regulations (A41).

#11. Event Section 

EVENTS

​Most times, this section is left blank.

#12. Payment Section 

PAYMENTS

Details of payments made for the fees in the following section below will be in this sub-section. If the fees were paid online, it’ll be left blank.  

#13. Fees Section 

FEES

This section will contain information or details of the fees paid to IRCC such as FPC for Processing Fee, Right of Permanent Residence Fee (RPRF), Biometrics, Visitor, etc.

#14. ESDC Section 

ESDC

This section will contain information concerning the Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA). It is issued by ESDC i.e. Employment and Social Development Canada.


#15. How to Interpret GCMS Notes – Associations Section 

ASSOCIATIONS – This section contains details or information on verifications done by third parties.

Organization and Entities: 1

​Created Date:  The date the file was created

Created By:  Immigration officer’s code of e.g MC23456 

Update Date:  Date of file update

Updated By:  Immigration officer’s code of e.g MC23456

Amount Invested (CAD):  Left blank if it’s not to verify business funds 

Org/Entity ID:   IRCC internal ID code for the entity/organization undergoing a verification

Name: CIO – EE – 11.2 Decision ( eligibility), Triage criteria – (admissibility), CEC COMPLETE FILES, etc. 

Type:  The organization

Sub Type: Other

Other Sub Type Descrip:  CIO – EE – 11.2 ( eligibility), Triage criteria – (admissibility), CEC COMPLETE FILES, etc. 

Contact Family Name: This will be blank to avoid revealing  the organization being verified 

Contact Given Name(s): This will be left blank to avoid revealing  the organization being verified

Reason:  | “Other” |

Other Reason Description:  11.2 ( eligibility), Triage criteria – (admissibility), CEC COMPLETE FILES, etc. 

Effective Date:  Typically around the date R10 checks are carried out

Expiry Date:  This will be left blank to avoid revealing  the organization being verified

Disassociation Reason:  Left blank

Other Disassociation Description:  This will be left blank to avoid revealing  the organization being verified

Registration #: This will be left blank to avoid revealing  the organization being verified

Place of Registry: This will be left blank to avoid revealing  the organization being verified

Status:  Active

Third Party ID#: This will be left blank to avoid revealing  the organization being verified

Place of Registry:  This will be left blank to avoid revealing  the organization being verified

Organization and Entities: 2 (etc.)

Same data as Organization and Entities: It follows the same trend as above but it’s for other verified organization and entities.

There are usually two more sub-sections in the ASSOCIATIONS section: APPLICATIONS AND CASES, and PAPER FILE.  They are usually left blank, but they can contain relevant information when applicable: 


#16. How to Interpret GCMS Notes’ History

HISTORY –  It contains every status update the application underwent 

Application Status

Application Status: 1

Created Date:   usually left blank 

Created By:   usually left blank

Updated Date:   usually left blank

Updated By:   Immigration officer’s code

App / Case Status:  Open, Close

App Status Reason:  Open, Invitation Sent, Application Received, Invitation Pending, etc.  

Other Reason Description:  usually left blank 

Leave Decision:  usually left blank 

Leave Decision Date:  usually left blank 

Decision:  usually left blank 

Decision Date:  usually left blank 

Office: Centralized Intake Office, GCMS-System, etc

Accepted Date: Date the application was accepted and  received 

Application Status: 2

Same data as Application Status: Follows this same pattern above but it contains updates.

Application

Application: 1

Created Date:  usually left blank 

Created By:  usually left blank 

Updated Date:  Immigration officer’s code 

Updated By:  usually left blank |

Field Name:  Medical, Eligibility, Security, Criminality, Primary Office, “Secondary Office, etc. 

New Value: In Progress, Not Started, Complete, Passed,  etc. 

Old Value: In Progress, Not Started, Complete, Passed, etc. 

Office: GCMS-System, Immigration office

Application : 2

It follows same format as Application 1 above but for other application types, with updates on each.

Fees

Fees:1

Created Date:  usually left blank 

Created By:  usually left blank

Updated Date:  Immigration officer’s code

Updated By:  Immigration office

Fee Id: ID  code of fee

Name:  Applicant or dependent’s full name 

Field Name: Status of fee 

New Value: Paid or Exempt

Old Value: Outstanding, or blank space

Fees: 2

Same data as Fees1 above: It follows the same format, but for other fee IDs, and updates on each.

Activity

Activity: 1

Created Date:  usually left blank 

Created By:  usually left blank 

Updated Date:  usually left blank |

Updated By:  usually left blank 

UCI:   Unique Client Identifier (UCI) number 

Name:   Principal Applicant or Dependent’s full name 

Sub-Activity / Activity Type:  Medical, Candidate Assessment, Biometrics, Eligibility, Criminality,  Security, Medical, etc. 

Field Name: Status

New Value: | “Not Started”, “In Progress”, “Passed”, “Complete”, etc. |

Old Value: | “Not Started”, “In Progress”, “Passed”, “Complete”, etc. |

Activity: 2

Same data as Activity 1 above, but it’s for other family members included in the application, other types of activities, and updates on each of them.


#17. How to Interpret GCMS Notes’ Edocs

EDOCS – This section will cover a list of the details of all documents sent to IRCC and received from the applicant or created by IRCC.

Edocs: 1

Document #:  The document number 

eDoc #:  The document number if it’s uploaded online

Attachment Name:  Document name

Document Type:  Admissibility, Form, Relationship, Incoming Correspondence

Document Sub Type:  Passport/Travel Doc, IMM5786, Marriage Certificate / Licence, Medical, National ID, Police Certificate, etc. 

Country of Issue:  if it’s applicable 

Issue Date:  if it’s applicable 

Expiry Date:  if it’s applicable 

Uploaded Date: The date the document was uploaded

Uploaded By:  Typically, a system 

Uploaded Office:  If it’s not applicant 

Uploaded Source:  

Edocs: 2 (etc.)

It contains the same data as Edocs1 above but for other documents.

#18. Notes Section

NOTES – This section contains notes written by immigration officers, arranged chronologically from the most recent 

Notes: 1

​Created Date:   The date the note was created

Created By:  Immigration officer’s code e.g. BA12345

Update Date:  Date the note was picked up

Updated By: Immigration officer’s code e.g. BA12345

Restricted:  Either Yes or No

Label: EE Eligibility, General, Client Enquiry, Adm/Criminality etc. 

Office:  Centralized Intake Office, GCMS-System, Montreal Call Centre, etc. 

Text:  Notes by immigration officer 

Notes: 2 (etc.)

Same data as Notes 1 above but it’s for other family members in the application, other activities types, and updates on each.


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FAQs on Sample GCMS Notes and How to Understand and Interpret GCMS Notes


Final Thoughts

As explained earlier, the only accurate way you can track your Canada visa and/or immigration application; and even take corrective steps is through requesting your GCMS notes from IRCC. But it’s one thing to request your GCMS notes and another to be able to interpret the content of your GCMS notes.

We hope this comprehensive GCMS notes guide and the sample GCMS notes provided have answered all your questions on “How to interpret GCMS notes?” and “How to understand GCMS notes?”. Have this guide by your side while going through your GCMS notes for more clarity.

What if you still need further help after reading your GCMS notes? We are glad to step in and give you expert help to solve your GCMS notes interpretation challenge. Get Started ->

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