File number or UCI?
People are often confused by several identifiers present on their immigration/visa papers. We have a brief guide on file numbers here, but there is one more thing you should be aware about.
Unique Client Identifier
Every application submitted to CIC receives its unique file number. Similarly, applicant applying to CIC may also receive his or her unique number. This number is called UCI, or Unique Client Identifier. Clearly, one client can have several applications with CIC; as such, several file numbers can be associated with just one UCI. This is the reason why a file number must not be confused with an UCI: if an applicant has submitted two or more applications, submitting a GCMS request with UCI instead of file number may result in receiving wrong file – the one that is outdated or not of interest, for example. You must always provide your file number, not your client number when requesting GCMS via www.visafile.info.
While file number is mandatory, UCI is not. It means that every application has a number, but not every applicant has an UCI.
How to tell UCI from a file number
We already explained how you can find a file number in your CIC correspondence. UCI is different – it always consists of eight digits, often written in series of four with dash in between. Here are examples of an unique client identifier:
In other words, if you see two or more ID’s, use the one which is longer and begins with a letter.