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Are You Inadmissible to Come to Canada?

Under Canadian immigration law, some persons are inadmissible to Canada for public safety or other reasons. Before you apply for immigration status, a work permit, or even book a ticket to visit Canada, you will want to determine whether you can enter the country. If you are inadmissible, you may be denied entry at the border and your application for immigration will be denied.

Am I Inadmissible Under Canadian Immigration Law?

You may be inadmissible if:

  • You have committed acts which would be a crime in Canada. If the crime would carry a prison term of at least ten years or if you have committed drug-related crimes and other offenses, you are generally inadmissible for serious criminality.
  • You have certain medical conditions. Changes to medical inadmissibility regulations were made in August 2018, and under these new rules, you may not be admitted to Canada if your medical condition exceeds an annual threshold for expected treatment costs. In 2017, that threshold was $6,655 annually.
  • You have a criminal record. If you have a past criminal record inside of Canada or outside of it, you may still be admissible if you seek a record suspension or if you have been rehabilitated for immigration purposes. For some minor offenses, such as minor mischief, you may be able to enter Canada without any additional fees for a temporary resident permit as long as you did not commit any more serious offenses and as long as you did not serve time in jail.
  • You were dishonest in an immigration interview or application.
  • You are considered a security risk by border authorities or the Canadian government. This may be the case if you have been convicted of espionage, terrorism, or other acts.
  • You have committed violations of international or human rights. This can include war crimes, being a senior government official of a country accused of serious rights violations, and other related actions.
  • You have significant financial difficulties. If you cannot prove you can support yourself and your dependents while in Canada, you will generally be considered inadmissible.
  • You have links to organized criminal activity.
  • You do not meet the requirements of Canadian immigration law.
  • One or more members of your family is inadmissible to Canada.

What to Do if You Are Inadmissible?

In some cases, even if you are inadmissible, you may be able to seek entry into Canada. For example, if you have committed a crime, you may be able to prove you should still be admitted into Canada if enough time has passed since your conviction that you can be deemed to be rehabilitated by Canadian immigration or if you have taken other steps towards rehabilitation. You may also gain entry by securing a record suspension or a temporary resident permit.

In fact, for many grounds of inadmissibility, you may be able to secure a temporary resident permit to temporarily travel to Canada. To secure this permit, you must apply and generally pay the $200 application fee. As part of your application, you must be able to prove that your stay in Canada outweighs any risk you pose to Canadians or to the country. There is no guarantee you will be granted a permit, but if you have been told you are inadmissible, this is one option to pursue.

Would You Like to Live in Canada?

If you are admissible and would like to apply for Express Entry or for permits or permanent resident status, Immigration Direct has resources to help you start applying from the comfort of your home today. We also have a free blog and other useful resources to help you understand the immigration process.


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