All about the new GCMS report

New GCMS report

IRCC and CBSA have been working together to implement a new GCMS format with the goal of reducing the number of pages generated all while still providing key information to applicants.

The new condensed format of the GCMS report will cut down on the number of pages involved, particularly for Express Entry applications which can run into several hundred pages. This new format is gradually being rolled out and it will eventually become the default format. The new format will look like how the immigration officers view the GCMS software today.

IRCC is making Express Entry visa applications a priority for the new GCMS report because Express Entry applications usually have the most number of pages in a GCMS file. On the other hand CBSA intends to provide the new GCMS report for all visa types.

Despite the new look and format of the GCMS report IRCC and CBSA both intend to make key information available to applicants in the new report. It will include a section that summarizes the status of the application, there will be several pages with the details for each stage of the application as well as a section for the immigration officers notes.

The new report is expected to greatly improve efficiency at both IRCC and CBSA; it will increase the processing capacity and hopefully reduce processing delays as well.

CBSA has already started to issue the new GCMS report since early June 2021 and IRCC is expected to follow soon. The new report will likely undergo changes and improvements will be made as time passes. We will update this section as more information becomes available.

[Updated October 15th, 2021] IRCC is gradually making the new format of the GCMS report more widely available. Over time more applicants will receive their GCMS file in the new format.

[Updated May 11th, 2022] The Office of the Information Commissioner of Canada submitted a Special Report to Parliament on May 25, 2021 titled “Access at Issue: Challenging the status quo“. This report stated that since most requesters are seeking information about the “Eligibility” of an immigration/citizenship application and the application’s “Officer’s Notes”, IRCC ATIP should work towards providing that information in a more concise format. IRCC ATIP accepted the recommendation and has created a streamlined GCMS ATIP Report that reflects those recommendations. This new report is more targeted and is shorter but still provides information about the eligibility and the officer’s notes of the requested application. This new GCMS ATIP Report is currently being piloted on requests for economic Permanent Residence applications (ie. Express Entry, Provincial Nominees, TR to PR Pathway).

[Updated Fall, 2022] IRCC concluded the pilot of the new GCMS ATIP Report on requests for economic Permanent Residence applications in Fall of 2022 and based on its own analysis of the pilot IRCC made the decision to make the new GCMS ATIP Report the default format for all requests. Since Fall of 2022 all files from IRCC are provided in the new format only – which is the old format but with fewer pages while still providing key information to applicants.

Structure of the new GCMS report

The new report will be organized in the below mentioned order, with a page for each category. Depending on the type of your visa application one or more of the below categories may not apply to your situation. If a category does not apply to your situation then you may not receive the related page in the report.

  1. Case Status
  2. Persons
  3. Client Details
  4. Security
  5. HIRV
  6. Criminality
  7. Criminality Sub Activity 
  8. Organized Crime
  9. Medical
  10. Medical – IME
  11. Info Sharing
  12. Matched Records Misrepresentation
  13. Other Requests
  14. Notes
  15. Finalized application – Approved 
  16. Finalized application – Refused Payments
  17. Fees 

Sample pages from the new GCMS report

Page 1 of the new GCMS report
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Canada Visa Status - The only way to know the most detailed information of an application is by requesting GCMS Notes. GCMS is the most comprehensive and up-to-date information that can be obtained to understand the status of a visa application or to learn the details about a visa refusal.  It offers far more detail than IRCC’s online system and you can order your GCMS Notes online
Disclaimer - Material contained within this website is intended for informational purposes only and is provided as a service to the Canada visa applicant community. These materials do not, and are not, intended to constitute legal advice.