Are you headed to Canada? Well, you better think twice, especially if you have a DUI history. The restrictions at border control don’t stop with a DUI, DWI and reckless driving will also deny you entry into the country.
It doesn’t matter your country of origin, immigration officers will stop you from entering Canada. This is because you pose a danger to the public if you got into the country.
This is also called inadmissibility. For this law to be effective, there must be a similar law in Canada. For DWI and DUIs, the law is Section 253 of the Criminal Code of Canada. You can find more about DUI in Canada at nationalpardon.org
Will You Ever Step Foot in Canada?
Does this mean you’ll never get into Canada? Fortunately, there’s a way around this temporary ban. One is by obtaining a Temporary Resident Permit (TRP). This is suitable for persons who have more than one DUI convictions or it’s been no more than 5 years since you served all sentences related to DUI.
This permit will grant you temporary access to Canada, but for a limited period. In addition, you have to convince the authorities, via the TRP application, that you have more benefits than the risks they say you pose. Therefore, you can see this permit only benefits those on business which will benefit Canadians.
Criminal rehabilitation is a more lenient option. In this option, your criminal records will be wiped, but only for your stay in Canada so the authorities don’t bother you. However, you must have completed all sentences and the terms attached to them. This means convincing the immigration officials that you’ve transformed.
However, you don’t need to make a formal application. If you have more than 10 years under your belt after completing your sentence and have a single DUI conviction, then you may receive “deemed rehabilitation”.
This means the time has wiped away your records. Nevertheless, it’s advisable to seek an opinion letter issued by a lawyer working for the Canadian immigration to show you aren’t inadmissible. The main advantage this option provides is that you don’t have to show that your trip will bring benefits to Canadians.
Updated DUI Laws in Canada
New DUI laws took effect after December 18th and they carry severe consequences for those convicted of impaired driving. This means impaired driving is now a serious offense in Canada which carries a maximum sentence of 5 to 10 years.
As such, anyone who commits a DUI offense after the law takes effect will not qualify for a deemed rehabilitation. However, you can still gain entry by using a TRP.
In Canada, a DUI offense is serious and can deny you entry, especially after the introduction of the new laws. Nevertheless, you can follow the laid-out procedures to gain entry and avoid confrontations with authorities.
Also, don’t lie to the officials or else you’ll reduce your chances of accessing the country. In fact, Canadian officials can ban you for life just by lying.