FAQ – Criminally Inadmissible Foreign Nationals
In this article, I will address a few popular questions and answers for Criminally Inadmissible Foreign Nationals to Canada and some important information to consider if you are one of these individuals. To be criminally inadmissible to Canada as a foreign national means that you have a criminal record or criminal convictions or charges that impede on your entry into Canada. Immigration Canada is extremely strict with criminal inadmissibility and will deny the entry of a foreign national that has a criminal past in order to avoid any threats to Canadian society. If you are a foreign national that has criminal inadmissibility to Canada, I suggest you read this article for more information pertaining to your particular circumstance. The intention of this article is meant to clarify any misunderstanding or confusion with regards to criminal inadmissibility to Canada.
Q: How do Immigration Officers assess my criminal inadmissibility to Canada?
A: This is a very good question to ask and a very good starting point to ultimately understanding your criminal inadmissibility issues to Canada. When an Immigration officer is assessing your admissibility to Canada they equate any foreign offences made outside of Canada to Canadian Acts of Parliament such as the Canadian Criminal Code. Once they are equated, a decision is made by the Immigration officer on whether the offence results in the foreign national being inadmissible to Canada under Canada’s Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA). An example of this is if a foreign national is charged with driving under the influence of alcohol and they have a blood alcohol level that is over 0.08%, they would be criminally inadmissible under A36(2)(b) of IRPA. The offence would be equivalent to S253 of Canada’s Criminal Code, which is also punishable under S255(1)(b) by way of indictment.
Q: What are common convictions that result in criminal inadmissibility to Canada?
A: One of the most common convictions that many foreign nationals have that result in criminal inadmissibility to Canada is drunk driving or driving under the influence. There are many different designations for driving under the influence, depending on where the conviction was given and the severity of the offence. For more information on common convictions that result in criminal inadmissibility to Canada, please read our article: “Common Offences that result in Criminal Inadmissibility.”
Q: What happens if I was charged with an offence but the court determined that there was no conviction record? Am I still inadmissible to Canada?
A: This entirely depends on a variety of things. It is best to retrieve the court documents and FBI records to determine if you have any criminal charges on your record or not. If you do not have any, then you will be admissible to Canada and may enter as a visitor. However, when entering as a visitor, it is advisable to carry these documents with you to prove your admissibility, just in case the Immigration officer probes for further information. This is the case if you are entering Canada through a port of entry.
Q: If I am criminally inadmissible to Canada, may I enter as a visitor?
A: Unfortunately, no, you will not be able to enter Canada as a visitor. Any foreign national that has criminal inadmissibility to Canada may not be permitted entry into the country, unless otherwise authorized. The foreign national must apply for the appropriate application, such as a Temporary Resident Permit or a Criminal Rehabilitation, in order to obtain authorization to enter Canada with inadmissibility issues.
Q: What is a sentence defined as and how do I know what my rehabilitation date is?
A: A sentence is defined as a penalty enforced by a Court for an offence and can be administered in a variety of forms. For instance, a sentence can be in the form of a monetary fine, a license suspension, or an imprisonment term. With regards to a rehabilitation date, you will be eligible to apply for a Criminal Rehabilitation so long as five years have passed since the completion of the sentence imposed. For example, when you completely paid for the fine or the license suspension ended. In order to apply for a Criminal Rehabilitation, you must provide these documents and proof of completion.
Q: If my conviction occurred over ten years ago, am I still inadmissible to Canada?
A: If your conviction occurred over ten years ago, your inadmissibility to Canada depends on whether the ten years have passed since the completion of the sentence imposed. If ten years have elapsed since the completion of the sentence imposed, then you may be deemed rehabilitated. This rehabilitation is pursuant to R18(2) of Canada’s Immigration Regulations. Therefore, if this is the case, you do not have to apply for a Temporary Resident Permit or a Criminal Rehabilitation because you have been deemed rehabilitated and are no longer criminally inadmissible to Canada. However, if you have more than one offence on your criminal record, then you may not be deemed rehabilitated and you will need to be authorized to enter Canada with the appropriate application.
Contact Akrami & Associates
Should you have any further questions or feel confused or unclear about your criminal inadmissibility to Canada, it is important to talk about any questions you may have and discuss your concerns. By talking to immigration professionals about your concerns, this will ease your worries and assist with the application process. Many immigration applications are difficult to pursue on your own and it is highly recommended that you seek out professional and experienced help before attempting to apply. Here, at Akrami & Associates, we work and have experience with many different immigration issues. We have helped many of our clients obtain authorization to enter Canada through a Temporary Resident Permit or a Criminal Rehabilitation. If you believe that you may be eligible, please feel free to contact Akrami & Associates at our office at 416-477-2545 for more information or if you would like to book a consultation with an immigration professional for more advice.
With Akrami & Associates, there is always a way!