Your Options When You Are Refused Entry To Canada

Many people who want to visit Canada are often surprised to learn that one can be denied entry to Canada because of something like a criminal record, even for a non-violent crime. If you have a criminal record for a crime like a DUI or a criminal record from decades ago, you could still be deemed inadmissible to Canada.

Do I have any options when I am refused entry to Canada?

You have two main options if you are refused entry to Canada. However, we recommend determining if you will be refused entry before it actually happens. After all, when you are denied entry to Canada it is very disruptive and frustrating. All of your travel or vacation expenses will be wasted as they are often non-refundable, and you may be forced to miss an important business meeting or a special visit with your family members in Canada.

If you are able to sort out your inadmissibility issues in advance, you have a better chance of a smooth, inconvenience-free trip.

So, when you are denied entry to Canada – or will be denied entry to Canada if you try and enter – you can either:

1. Apply for criminal rehabilitation. You may make an application for criminal rehabilitation at the closest Canadian consulate. You may only be eligible to apply for criminal rehabilitation for a conviction over five years old. If you are approved for criminal rehabilitation, your inadmissibility to Canada (the reason you were denied entry) will be wiped away.

2. The most common avenue for people who are denied entry to Canada is a temporary resident permit. This is like applying for special permission to enter Canada despite your inadmissibility, and a temporary resident permit is sometimes called a visitor visa. You will need to effectively demonstrate that you will not overstay your temporary resident permit, which will generally be valid for six months. In order to prove you will not overstay, you may need to provide immigration authorities with information about your life in your home country. In addition you will need to show that you have enough money to pay for your trip in Canada and provide details about your criminal case.

Do you think you will be denied entry to Canada?

Please call us for a comprehensive assessment so we can determine which option is right for you.

Any information provided here does not constitute legal advice and is intended for general information only. Should you require legal advise, you are encouraged to contact a lawyer directly. All blog postings are public and are not subject to solicitor/client confidentially. Case results depend on a variety of factors unique to each case, and case results do not guarantee or predict a similar result in any further case undertaken by the lawyer.

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About Michael Niren

Michael is a graduate of Osgoode Hall Law School in Toronto. He is a member of the Law Society of Upper Canada, the Canadian Bar Association’s Citizenship and Immigration Section and the American Bar Association. He is frequently called upon to appear in the media to discuss Canadian and US immigration issues effecting North Americans. He has been interviewed by Canada AM, CTV, Canada News Net, the Globe and Mail and the Toronto Star and has given lectures on immigration topics overseas.

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