Case No. 21-013

​The complaint relates to information about the member on the web site of their former immigration consulting firm, which is now owned by the member’s adult child. The impugned information was removed from the web site on or about August 5, 2021, after the member received notice of the complaint.

After reviewing the complaint, the Chairperson decided to refer the allegations for investigation by the Ombudsperson as per the Procedures for Making a Complaint about a Member (the Procedures) as the allegations were within scope of the Procedures. This decision was consistent with the recommendation of the Ombudsperson.

The investigation report concluded that:

  1. The Member was not in a real conflict of interest. This conclusion is based on the following considerations:
    • The member confirmed that they did not receive any monetary or non-monetary benefit from the firm since their appointment to the RPD
    • The firm’s website did not indicate that the member was or is serving as a member of the IRB
    • A search of IRB records indicates that the member did not preside over a matter involving the member’s former immigration consulting firm
  2. The Member was in an apparent conflict of interest. This conclusion is based on the following considerations:
    • A reasonably informed person, believing that a sitting IRB member was serving as a member of the team or as a special advisor at an immigration consulting firm, would have perceived that there was, or is, a conflict of interest
    • The member did not exercise a reasonable degree of due diligence to ensure that all information suggesting that they had an ongoing relationship with the firm had been removed from the website

The investigation report was provided to the Chairperson who accepted the conclusions in the report and found that there was a breach of the Code of Conduct for Members of the Immigration and Refugee Board.

The following factors contributed to a decision not to take any corrective or disciplinary measures:

  • The member demonstrated remorse
  • The information remained on the website due to an oversight and there is no evidence of an intent to mislead
  • The website no longer has any reference to the member​

The complaint was founded, and the file was closed