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).

Can a Green Card Holder Go to Canada with a DUI?

A United States Permanent Resident (Green Card Holder) can travel to Canada without the need for a Visitor Visa. Even if Canada normally requires individuals of your nationality to give biometrics in order to get a Canadian Visa, as long as you present your US Green Card at the border along with your passport you should not need a travel visa to gain entry to the country. If you have a criminal record, however, including a single DUI or DWI arrest or conviction, you may be criminally inadmissible to Canada and denied entry by border security unless you have been issued special entrance permission. Green Card holders who are inadmissible to Canada may also be denied an eTA preventing them from flying to a Canadian airport.

For individuals with an alcohol-related impaired driving charge or another criminal record, this Canadian entry permission is available as Criminal Rehabilitation or a Temporary Resident Permit. Criminal Rehabilitation is a long term solution that permanently overcomes a person's criminal inadmissibility to Canada, but is only available to people who finished probation greater than five years ago. A Temporary Resident Permit can enable a US resident with a criminal record to go to Canada for a short amount of time (can be valid for multiple entries up to three years), but requires a specific reason to visit Canada such as a business trip to Vancouver or family in Toronto.

It does not matter if your drunk driving offense occurred in the United States or your native country, even with US residency you may be inadmissible to Canada either way without permission since it is the equivalent Canadian law that matters. Being inadmissible to Canada because of criminality can also impede eligibility across all of the country's immigration programs, which means that a person could require a TRP or Rehabilitation to obtain a Canada Work Permit with a DWI.

The Canadian border has full access to FBI criminal databases, which means that Green Card holders who have a criminal history may be detected when crossing the border regardless of their country of origin. Whether a person is a computer engineer from India working for a tech startup in the Bay Area or a wealthy businessman or businesswoman from China who obtained a Green Card by investment through the EB-5 investor immigration program, a criminal record can disqualify US residents from being able to travel to Canada unless they attain adequate entrance permission. Since an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) is required for most Green Holders to fly to Canada, and a DWI, wet reckless, careless driving, and many other offenses including Domestic Violence can cause a Canada eTA to get refused, many Green Card holders will need to fix their inadmissibility through a consulate before being allowed to fly into Canada. Even an arrest without a conviction can prevent an American resident from getting approved for an eTA Canada.

Drunk driving is now a serious crime in Canada that can result in up to a ten years of jail time, so even non-criminal impaired driving offenses such as DWAI and OWI can block a person with an American Green Card from going to Canada. Basically, in Canada driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is treated like a felony. While Criminal Rehabilitation is the ideal solution since it is a permanent fix, Green Card holders with a recent offense must often avoid Canada or apply for a temporary waiver.

If you live in the United States as a permanent resident but have a DUI, contact us now for a free consultation about entering Canada with a Green Card.

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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!