What is a letter of explanation?
An explanation letter is used to explain particulars of your application that may raise questions or concerns from an immigration officer from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC, formerly CIC). Letters of explanation (LoE) can be used to help immigration officers understand your circumstances to leave the guesswork out of your application. Letters of explanation are important tools at your disposal because it is your responsibility to prove that you are eligible to immigrate through the program of choice.
Is a letter of explanation necessary?
No, a letter of explanation is not a requirement to submit applications to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada. However, just because it isn't a requirement doesn't mean it isn't helpful to your application. Read below about when to use a letter of explanation.
When to use a letter of explanation?
If you understand the qualifying criteria for your applications and the program objectives, you may be able to identify weaknesses in your application that may raise questions or concerns from the officer. Keep in mind that providing an explanation does not guarantee acceptance by the immigration officer. You will still need to meet all the qualifying criteria of your immigration program and satisfy the officer with supporting evidence. There are various instances when you should submit an LoE but here are 3 common examples:
Note: Attach additional documents if necessary to help support your explanation.
Considerations when writing a Letter of Explanation
How do I write a letter of explanation?
Writing a letter of explanation for IRCC is simple. Keep in mind that you are trying to explain your situation as accurately and concisely as possible. There is no reason to mention irrelevant facts or information as it will not benefit your application. We've created a sample letter or explanation (LoE) template that you can download at the top of this page.