Joel Sandaluk interviewed by iPolitics about the increase of interest in immigration to Canada by post-election Americans

It was something of a running gag throughout the presidential election cycle that a Donald Trump win could spur a mass political exodus to Canada, America’s comparatively moderate and liberal hinterland to the north — but immigration lawyers seem to be split at this point over whether there will be a Trump-bump in immigration.

Immigration firms’ phones were ringing off the hook after the GOP nominee trumped expectations and won, and Citizenship and Immigration’s website went down election night around 11 p.m. once it became clear Trump was leading.

Toronto immigration lawyer Joel Sandaluk, from Mamann, Sandaluk & Kingwell, said that while there’s always an uptick of immigration interest after every American election cycle, this one has been more substantial — and it might last.

“It really transcends what happened before,” Sandaluk said, adding they’re likely getting “four to five times” the volume of inquiries from the U.S. than after past elections.

“I actually do think some of it will turn into business. People are … not calling up with random questions. People are booking consultations and paying legal fees to seriously examine their options. It’s not random telephone calls.”

Julie Taub, an immigration lawyer in Ottawa, also dealt with an influx of calls and emails related to the Trump win — including a small number of requests for political asylum she had to turn down.

She said that left ultimately about “half a dozen serious” inquiries from Americans looking for work permits or “those who discovered their Canadian spouses are very useful right now.”

But she thinks that was it.

“It was a knee-jerk reaction,” she said. “Trump is sounding more and more reasonable.”

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