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Enter Canada With A DUI
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Entry to Canada can be Precluded by DUI

If you have a DUI, or other drinking & driving-related conviction, on your record you may be criminally inadmissible to Canada.  Entry to Canada with a DUI is possible, but you will need to jump through some hoops first.  Those who are criminally inadmissible to Canada may not enter Canada as a visitor, business visitor, temporary foreign worker, or apply for immigration status without special permission.

Drinking and driving charges are prosecuted under a variety of designations around the world. Below is a list of charges that can result from the operation of a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol.

  • Driving Under the Influence (DUI)
  • Driving While Intoxicated (DWI)
  • Driving While Impaired (DWI)
  • Driving While Ability Impaired (DWAI)
  • Operating While Intoxicated (OWI)
  • Operating a Motor Vehicle While Intoxicated (OMVI)
  • Wet Reckless

According to Canadian immigration law, any indictment relating to the operation of a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol will render the person criminally inadmissible to Canada.  Even before a verdict has been rendered on the accused, Canadian immigration law dictates certain requirements for entry to Canada with DUI.  The criminal inadmissibility of a dependent or accompanying family member can also have significant implications on your ability to travel or apply for immigration to Canada.

In the United States DUI charges may be plead down to misdemeanor status, however Canadian border agents will still only assess your inadmissibility according to Canadian law. An American citizen who has been convicted of a misdemeanor level drunk driving offense will still find him or herself criminally inadmissible to Canada until the issue has been rectified.

DUI Canada Entry Solutions

It is routine for border agents to ask about your prior criminal history when crossing the border. Electronic passports also make it increasingly easy for Canadian border authorities to access your entire criminal profile. There are different ways to help you enter Canada with DUI depending on the circumstances:

A short-term solution is to gain entry to Canada with DUI as a visitor via TRP.  Temporary Resident Permits can be granted for up to three years, although it is rare that applicants are approved to visit that long.

A Temporary Resident Permit is just that – temporary. If you are looking to permanently rectify your inadmissibility status, you can apply for criminal rehabilitation – a process that vacates prior criminal infractions that may be affecting your entry to Canada, for example DUI.  In order to qualify for criminal rehabilitation five years must have elapsed since the completion of all sentences, probationary periods, and fines.

A third option is to qualify for deemed rehabilitation status. If more than 10 years have elapsed since the completion of all sentences, probationary periods, and fines, relating to a singular DUI; Canadian immigration authorities may disregard the DUI.

Choosing the Best Option for Canada DUI Entry

Drinking & driving offences can affect your ability to travel to Canada as a visitor, and render you ineligible for Canadian immigration.  Our Canadian immigration lawyers can help you enter Canada with a DUI.

To determine which strategy is right for you, contact an experienced Canada DUI entry lawyer for a free consultation.