Rehabilitation for Criminality Outside Canada

When a person is convicted of an offense outside Canada, it is necessary to compare the elements of Canadian law with those of the foreign jurisdiction to determine whether the person is inadmissible. The particular law under which the person was convicted in the foreign country is not relevant. Rather, what matters is the Canadian offense that matches the criminal act committed.

If you have committed an offense outside of Canada, then you may be inadmissible if:

  • You were convicted of an offense that, if committed in Canada, would constitute an offense punishable by a maximum term of imprisonment of at least ten years.
  • You committed an act that, if committed in Canada, would constitute an offense punishable by a maximum term of imprisonment of at least ten years, and is also an offense in the country where you committed it.
  • You were convicted of an offense that, if committed in Canada, would constitute an indictable offense, or of two summary convictions offenses not arising out of a single occurrence that, if committed in Canada, would constitute offenses.
  • You committed an offense that is an offense in the place where it was committed and that, if committed in Canada, would constitute an indictable offense.

An exception is if the offense(s) was pardoned in a manner that is equivalent to a pardon in Canada, or if there was an acquittal.

Our Service – Rehabilitation Applications

If you are concerned that you might be inadmissible to Canada because of a criminality issue, then you should consult a lawyer or a trained consultant.  We have the experience to determine if there is a problem, and also to apply for what is called “rehabilitation”.

A person whose conviction occurred outside Canada is deemed to be rehabilitated (no longer inadmissible) if he/she can show that:

  • At least ten years have passed since the completion of the sentence;
  • The conviction is not considered serious in Canada;
  • The conviction did not involve any serious property damage, physical harm to any person, or any type of weapon; and
  • The offense committed would be punishable in Canada by a maximum term of imprisonment of ten years.

If you cannot be deemed to be rehabilitated, then you may still apply for individual rehabilitation.  You will generally be eligible for rehabilitation once five years have passed since the sentence for an offense has been completed, and the conviction is a hybrid or indictable offense in Canada. The embassy will consider all relevant factors of the offense.  Finally, you may also apply for a Temporary Resident Permit.

We routinely act for people who do not need help with their application, and only retain us to address a criminal inadmissibility.

Please e-mail steven.meurrens@larlee.com or call 1-604-681-9887 if you have any questions about overcoming your inadmissibility.