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Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How long will it take IRCC (formerly known as CIC) to process my Permanent Resident Card application?

A: It currently takes IRCC (formerly known as CIC) up to six months to process applications for a renewal or replacement Permanent Resident Card (for existing permanent residents).

The IRCC (formerly known as CIC) estimates that first time Permanent Resident Card applications will take approximately one and a half months to process.

Q: Can I apply for a new or replacement Permanent Resident Card from outside Canada?

A: Generally you must be physically present in Canada to apply for a new or replacement Permanent Resident Card. If you lose your card or it expires while you are outside Canada, you should contact the Canadian Embassy, Consulate or High Commission closest to you.

Q: What is the difference between a Permanent Resident and a Landed Immigrant?

A: The terms "Permanent Resident" and "Landed Immigrant" both refer to individuals who have been granted authorization to live and work in Canada on a permanent basis. Historically these individuals were referred to as "Landed Immigrants," but that term was replaced by "Permanent Resident" when IRCC (formerly known as CIC) introduced the Permanent Resident Card in 2002.

Q: Why do I need to replace my expired Permanent Resident Card?

A: Permanent Resident Cards are a required to re-enter Canada after international travel. In addition, Permanent Resident Cards serve as proof of status and may be requested by government agencies in Canada to show authorization to live and work, or to establish eligibility for a benefit reserved for Permanent Residents.

Q: What are the eligibility requirements to apply for a Permanent Resident Card?

A: In order to apply for a Permanent Resident Card, you must have been granted Permanent Resident Status by IRCC (formerly known as CIC). Individuals who have not already been granted Permanent Resident Status must file an application based on family sponsorship, or through an approved business program.

Q: Will I lose Permanent Resident Status if I don't replace my expired Permanent Resident Card?

A: No. The only way that you can lose Permanent Resident Status is by failing to meet the residency requirement, or committing a serious crime. Your Permanent Resident Card is proof of your valid status and should be replaced so that you maintain the ability to travel.

Q: What is the Residence Requirement to maintain Permanent Resident status?

A: To keep your status as a permanent resident, you must live in Canada for at least two years within a five-year period.

Q: How can I correct my name on my Permanent Resident Card?

A: If your Permanent Resident Card contains an error in your name, complete and submit a Request to Amend the Immigration Record of Landing or Confirmation of Permanent Residence (IMM 5218) before you apply for a replacement Permanent Resident card.

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