Canada with DUI

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DUI Canada entry

Canadian immigration lawyer focused on Canada DUI entry from USA. We offer free comprehensive consultations (unlike most companies who demand a retainer before assessing your options).

Border Requirements for Entering Canada from United States

There are many requirements that must be met by an American visitor for them to be permitted to cross the border into Canada. They must have proper identification, such as a valid US passport or an enhanced driver's license if going by land, enough funds to adequately support themselves for the duration of their trip, and sufficient ties to the United States to support the narrative that he or she will be visiting impermanently. He or she must also not be inadmissible to Canada due to criminality.

For Americans that have a criminal record, if the equivalent crime in Canada is potentially an indictable offense (similar to a felony in the United States), the individual may be criminally inadmissible to the country and denied entry when attempting to cross the border. Almost all drunk driving related offenses in the United States, including DUI, DWI, OVI, OWI, DWAI, wet reckless driving, and even Physical Control DWI, can equate to a Canadian hybrid offense which can be prosecuted as indictable. Consequently, many people with a past impaired driving conviction can be ineligible to travel to Canada without special permission.

Even if the offense was considered a traffic violation (civil ticket) not a criminal conviction, such as a New York DWAI or Wisconsin OWI, it can still equate to a full DUI in Canada which is punishable by up to ten years in jail. Some driving offenses that do not involve alcohol, such as dangerous driving, dry reckless driving, and leaving the scene of an accident (hit & run), can also result in a US citizen being stopped at the Canadian border and sent home. Possession of marijuana under 30 grams does not typically cause issues, but the border requirements for traveling to Canada can exclude visitors who were found in possession of larger quantities of the drug.

Admission permission for Canada can be granted to travelers with a criminal history via a Temporary Resident Permit or Criminal Rehabilitation. If an American has a single misdemeanor impaired driving offense that occurred before Canada strengthened their DUI laws, he or she may be grandfathered in under the old laws and considered "deemed rehabilitated" after ten years and allowed to enter Canada. Intoxicated driving is now a serious criminal offense in Canada, however, and as a result visitors with a single DUI can now be denied entry even after ten years so a Canadian immigration lawyer should always be consulted to determine your admissibility. Other types of criminal offenses, such as domestic violence, possession of a controlled substance, assault or battery, and theft, can also render a person criminally inadmissible to Canada forever.

Have a DUI and worry that the border requirements to enter Canada from USA will result in you being denied entry? Contact us now for a free evaluation.

United States DUI Entering Canada

Many Americans are astonished that a first offense DWI can result in them being denied entry to Canada. Since there is no presumption of innocence when it comes to the Canadian border, even a drinking and driving arrest can make someone instantly inadmissible regardless of the fact that no conviction has yet taken place. Canada's border requirements are designed to keep their society safe by keeping out potentially dangerous foreigners with criminal records for things such as assault and robbery. Because the country treats DUIs as major crimes, however, individuals with alcohol-related driving convictions on their record can also be excluded from traveling north of the border.

Foreign nationals that are criminally inadmissible to Canada can receive a border denial even if they have already flown into the country since you do not clear Canadian customs until you land at an airport in Canada. Even if you do not plan to stay in Canada for long, such as those boarding an Alaskan cruise in Vancouver for example, you must still meet all of Canada's border requirements to avoid the risk of being refused entry.

To avoid problems when crossing the Canadian border, it is always best to follow all the border requirements for entering Canada from the United States. Whether you are visiting for a short vacation or you will be studying at a Canadian university, Canada's border security personnel require foreign nationals to meet all immigration requirements to be granted successful entrance.

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If you have a DUI arrest or conviction on your record and need to enter Canada, call us now or fill out this form! 24 Hour Response Time!