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Immigration Blog about US & Canadian Immigration matters.

Immigration Blog about US & Canadian Immigration matters. If you would like to learn about US and Canadian immigration matters you have came to the right place to read blogs.
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Criminal Rehabilitation Eligibility


If you have a criminal history, you may not be allowed to enter Canada. It is a major deciding factor on whether you are allowed entry. This is called criminal inadmissibility. You will find yourself refused at the port of entry if you attempt to enter without the legal and necessary steps and precautions taken. In this blog, we will discuss who is eligible for criminal rehabilitation in order to be admissible to Canada.

Qualifications for Criminal Rehabilitation

To be deemed eligible for Criminal Rehabilitation the application must be able to prove the following:

  • Not a threat to Canada or Canadian Citizens/residents
  • 5 years have passed since the completion of the sentence, including probation/parole, fines paid etc
  • The “need” of the individuals outweighs the risks
  • Can show that they are not likely to re-offend
  • Can demonstrate remorse and regret

If the applicant has multiple offences on their record, there is a possibility that the waiting period may be increased to 10 years. Eligibility for criminal rehabilitation is based on the severity of the offence (s), the number of offences and the purpose of travel.

What is deemed rehabilitated?  

Deemed Rehabilitated means that the amount of time that has passed since the criminal act is suffice to say that you no longer pose a threat to Canadian society. The process to being deemed rehabilitated all depends on the severity of the crime, type and the amount of offences committed. A lot of applicants have been turned away at the border for crimes that were committed 25+ years ago, therefore making it very important to avoid this problem it is best to take care of the offences on the Canadian side as well. Canadian Border officers are extremely diligent in checking backgrounds so go prepared so you do not face the risk of being turned away.

I only have a misdemeanor charge. Will that make me inadmissible to Canada?

Crimes committed in a foreign country will be judged based on the Canadian criminal code. Meaning that a misdemeanor in a country may be considered a serious crime in Canada based on the Canadian criminal code, thus making you inadmissible to Canada. Some examples of misdemeanor charges may include:

  • Driving under the influence
  • Theft
  • Fraud
  • Trafficking controlled substances

Serious Crimes and Rehabilitation

According to the Canadian criminal code, a serious crime in Canada would receive a maximum jail sentence of 10 years. Serious crimes may include:

  • Sexual assault
  • Attempted murder
  • Weapons charges
  • Manslaughter

More effort is required to process these applications to enter Canada, making processing fees higher and wait times longer.

Rehabilitation Factor

The job of the immigration officer processing your application is to assess that the applicant is no longer a danger to Canadian society and is highly unlikely to reoffend. The officer is looking for evidence that you have learned your lesson. First step in this is a clean criminal record since the original offence. The officer will also look to see how much stability you have in your life, which may include employment, family ties, academic achievements, volunteering etc. Any supporting documentation submitted should explain why you should be deemed rehabilitated and will pose zero threat to Canada upon entry.

Application for Criminal Rehabilitation

Applying for criminal rehabilitation will allow for your past criminal convictions to be “forgiven, therefore allowing you entry into Canada. The application must be submitted at a Canadian Consulate and will not be processed at a port of entry. Most applicants face a wait time of around 8-12 months depending on if your application gets sent for a secondary review.

Akrami and Associates

It is highly inadvisable to attempt to complete a criminal rehabilitation application on your own. The application are long, detailed, and can be rather expensive depending on the severity of the crimes.  Every conviction must be converted into the Canadian criminal code, which its unique statute number and designation. It is highly recommended to seek legal assistance such as Akrami and Associates. The legal representatives are highly experienced with criminal rehabilitation applications. If you have further questions or are looking to get started call us today. 416-477-2545 or email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

With Akrami and Associates, there is always a way!

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