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Can you return to Canada after committing a crime in Canada?

Criminally inadmissible status occurs immediately once a charge is filed for crimes done outside of Canada, but not for offences committed inside of Canada.

If you were convicted of a crime in Canada, not before, you will no longer be allowed to enter the country. This is possible because of the language in the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act that distinguishes between “committing an act” that constitutes a crime and being found guilty of that act.

Someone may be rendered immediately inadmissible if they are accused of committing an offence while they are outside of Canada.

You can still travel to Canada while a charge is pending, but if found guilty you might not be able to. Fortunately, people have options for overcoming criminal inadmissibility.

How to overcome inadmissibility permanently in Canada

Although the application to pursue to address inadmissibility for an offence committed outside of Canada is criminal rehabilitation, a separate process must be followed when the offence occurs within Canada.

Candidates in this situation may submit an application for a record suspension, which follows a procedure akin to rehabilitation for criminal offences.

Officials review both applications to determine how the applicant has improved since the offence. The authorities must be persuaded that the offender is unlikely to commit another crime. The eligibility window is slightly different, though, since one can apply for a record suspension five years after serving a sentence for a crime with a summary conviction or ten years after serving a sentence for a crime with an indictable offence.

Criminal rehabilitation does not fall within this category. In every circumstance, the applicant is qualified to submit an application five years after serving their sentence.

How to overcome inadmissibility temporarily

Regardless of whether the offence occurred inside or outside of Canada, a Temporary Resident Permit (TRP) is possible. TRPs provide you with the option to remain in or come back to Canada before you are qualified for a record suspension.

TRPs are granted for the duration of the stay (up to three years) in Canada and may be extended from within Canada.

You must convince the Canadian government that the benefits of letting you stay outweigh the risks in order to qualify for a TRP. You can submit a strong application for a TRP with the aid of an accomplished Canadian immigration attorney.

Balwinder Kaur
Author: Balwinder Kaur

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