Can You Travel to Canada with OVI?
OVI stands for operating a vehicle under the influence or operating a vehicle
impaired. The Ohio General Assembly began using the acronym instead of DUI or
OMVI to better reflect the nature of the criminal offense which does not
necessarily require the offender to be "driving a motorized vehicle." Anyone who has been arrested
or convicted of an OVI in Ohio may be criminally inadmissible to Canada if they
do not have permission from the Canadian government. The government gives
permission to OVI offenders to cross the border via a Canada Temporary Resident
Permit (TRP) or Criminal Rehabilitation (CR). Without being approved for a TRP
or CR, individuals with an OVI on their record may be stopped at the border and
denied entry to Canada.
The United States and Canada share criminal databases, allowing the Canadian
border to see your OVI arrest as soon as it happens. When it comes to Canada
immigration, there is no presumption of innocence after a person is arrested
for a crime. This means that an individual may be criminally inadmissible to
Canada as soon as they are arrested for OVI even though no court disposition
has yet been reached. Until someone charged with operating a vehicle under the
influence can demonstrate to immigration officials at the Canada border that a
favorable outcome was reached, they may not be permitted entry to the country
without special permission. If the accused is convicted of the offense in court, they
may not be allowed Canada OVI entry until ten years have passed since the
completion of their sentence unless they are issued a Temporary Resident Permit
or Criminal Rehabilitation.
Have an Ohio OVI arrest or conviction and want to go to Canada? Phone us today
for a free extensive consultation with a Canadian immigration lawyer.
Ohio OVI Penalties
A first offense OVI typically involves three days to six months in jail, a fine of $250 to $1000,
and a license suspension of six months to three years. In lieu of jail, first-time offenders may be given the option to participate in a 72 hour Ohio Driver Intervention Program (DIP). A second offense OVI often involves ten
days to one year in jail, a fine of $350 to $1500, and a license suspension of one
year to five years. The penalty for a third offense is usually 30 days to one year of
imprisonment, a government fine of $350 to $1500, installation of a breath
alcohol Ignition Interlock Device (IID), as well as a minimum one year of jail
and a maximum of ten years hard time. A fourth offense for OVI typically leads to 60 days to
one year incarceration, installment of an IID, a minimum fine of $800 but as
large as $10k, and a suspended driver's license for a minimum of three years but
possibly permanently. In Ohio, the sentencing package often offered to first time OVI offenders by the prosecutor is called "community control" and consists
of a suspended sentence and two years of probation.
Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) for an OVI in Ohio
An under 21 DUI, also called an underage DUI, only requires a blood alcohol
content of .02% due to Ohio's strict no tolerance laws. Anyone less than 21
years old found to be operating a motor vehicle with a BAC between 0.02 and
0.08 will be charged with operating a vehicle after underage consumption
(OVAUC). If you are less than 21 but have a BAC above .08 percent, you will be
charged with a full blown adult OVI. Anyone charged with an OVAUC may be refused entry at Canada's border similar to OVI offenders. If you have a
commercial driver's license, such as a taxi driver, bus driver, or truck driver, you can be charged with an O.V.I. with a BAC of 0.04%. For
everyone else that is 21 or older, you can be arrested for OVI with a BAC of 0.08%. You can also be charged for refusing to submit to a
chemical test due to the state's implied consent law.
Our Canada immigration lawyer is licensed to help residents of every state in the US enter Canada with an OVI. If you have received an OVI in Columbus, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Toledo, Akron, Dayton, Parma, Canton, Youngstown, Lorain, Hamilton, Springfield, Kettering, Elyria, Lakewood, or any other area of Ohio
and are interested in traveling to Canada, contact us today for a free consultation.