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Our immigration lawyers at Boghossian Morais LLP have experience in assisting foreign nationals who have might been considered criminally inadmissible, who want entry into Canada, or who are currently in the country and want to stay. Criminal inadmissibility is an application stemmed from Canadian law and designed for individuals applying to enter and/or remain in Canada as permanent residents workers, students, or visitors (as the case may be), if they have been previously involved in criminal activity. It does not apply to people who are already permanent residents of Canada or Canadian citizens.


In order to overcome criminal inadmissibility, a foreign national must apply for criminal rehabilitation – and this is where our team of qualified immigration lawyers may assist them.

Criminal Rehabilitation Application: Determining Inadmissibility

A foreign national might be considered criminally inadmissible if they have:

  • been convicted of a criminal offence in Canada;

  • been convicted of a criminal offence outside of Canada, which is also a considered a crime in Canada; and,

  • committed a criminal act(s) in a foreign country that is/are considered to be a crime in that country and which, if committed in Canada, would also be punishable by Canadian law(s).

* Broadly, in order to determine inadmissibility in case(s) of criminal offence and/or act(s) committed outside of Canada, a finding of equivalency of the foreign law(s) to the Canadian law(s) must be previously established. In other words, the criminal offence and/or act(s) outside of Canada must bear the essential elements, based on facts and evidence, so as to constitute criminal offence and/or act(s) in Canada, under Canadian law(s), should they have occurred in Canada.


Convictions / offences in Canada

If a foreign national has been convicted of a criminal offence in Canada, then in order to be admissible to Canada they will need to apply for a record suspension (previously referred to as ‘pardon’) to the Parole Board of Canada.

Convictions / offences outside Canada

Criminal inadmissibility for foreign nationals who committed act(s) or were convicted of a crime outside of Canada may be overcome by applying for criminal rehabilitation.

Foreign nationals may be eligible to apply for criminal rehabilitation if at least five years have passed since they committed a crime (for cases where they were not charged) or since they were convicted of a crime and the sentence imposed ended.

In the case where more than ten years have passed since a foreign national committed a crime outside Canada (for cases where they were not charged) or since they completed the sentence imposed upon them, and the offence is one which, if committed in Canada, would be an indictable offence, punishable by a maximum term of imprisonment of less than ten years, then the foreign national may be deemed to have been rehabilitated.

Regardless of where the conviction or offense occurred – within or outside of Canada, our team of immigration lawyers at Boghossian Morais LLP will work diligently to ensure that your application contains the adequate submissions and the correct documentation and citations which would increase your chances of having your criminal rehabilitation granted.

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