Is your PR card about to expire or has it already? Are you travelling outside of Canada soon and it will expire during that time? Continue reading for your options to renew your PR card
What is Permanent Residency in Canada?
Permanent residency refers to the status given to individuals who have immigrated to Canada and are here to stay permanently. They are not Canadian Citizens (yet) but are citizens of another country. Permanent residents are afforded most of the same benefits and privileges that Canadian citizens have. Some of these include:
- Social benefits ( health care coverage)
- Ability to apply for Citizenship once eligible
- Protection under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms
- The ability to study, work and live anywhere in Canada
There are some privileges not afforded to Permanent Residents that are to Canadian citizens such as being able to run for political positions, allowed to vote or hold some jobs that require high security clearance.
How do you maintain permanent resident status?
There are certain requirements a person must meet to retain their permanent resident status in Canada. These are:
- Residency obligations: 730 days inside of Canada in the last 5 years.
- Must not receive a removal order
- Must not renounce permanent resident status
- Not receive a judicial sentence that states you are no longer a permanent resident.
You lose permanent resident status in Canada once you become a Canadian Citizen, but it is no longer needed than.
My card has expired. Am I still a permanent resident?
Even if your permanent resident card has expired, you are still a Canadian permanent resident. This just means that you need to renew your card as soon as possible.
Steps to renewing your permanent resident card
In order to renew your permanent resident card, there are several steps you must take. You must:
- Have valid permanent resident status
- Meet residency obligations( have been in Canada for a minimum of 730 days within the last 5 years
- Be physically in Canada during the process
- Provide a copy of your old permanent resident card
- Fill out all required forms completely and truthfully
- Include a copy of a valid travel document ( such as a passport)
- Pay the application fee and include a copy of the receipt
- Provide 2 photos that follow the dimension specifications
- Provide all other documents that are asked for
Once you have everything together, the application needs to mailed to the processing office in Sydney Nova Scotia
What is the processing time for renewing my PR card?
The processing time is typically 2-4 months but delays can arise.
Why do I need a permanent resident card?
A permanent residency card confirms your status as a permanent resident of Canada. When traveling outside of Canada, upon your return your PR card is what grants you entrance back into the country.
What happens if my card expires while I’m outside of Canada?
If you are outside of Canada and your PR card expires, you need to apply for a Permanent Resident Travel Document. This is the only document that will guarantee you access back into the country.
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