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Criminal Rehabilitation

Criminal rehabilitation is one of the ways a person can overcome their criminal inadmissibility to Canada. Criminal rehabilitation essentially wipes a criminal record clean for Canadian immigration purposes. Rehabilitation shows the Canadian government that a person has changed since the time of their criminal conviction and the chances of that person committing a crime in Canada are very low. They are seen as no longer posing a risk to Canadian citizens or society.

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Deemed Rehabilitation

People who are inadmissible to Canada because of a non-serious conviction (i.e. one that has a maximum sentence of less than 10 years in prison) are eligible to be deemed rehabilitated. A person will be deemed rehabilitated automatically 10 years after the completion of their sentence for non-serious criminality only. In order to qualify to be deemed rehabilitated, the crime committed must not have hurt anyone, destroyed any property, or involved a weapon.

If you believe that you qualify to be deemed rehabilitated, it’s a good idea to have all documents relating to your conviction with you when you come to Canada. This will allow a border officer to see that you meet all the requirements. If you do not live in the United States, you can also send your documents to a Canadian visa office where they will be reviewed for confirmation that you qualify for deemed criminal rehabilitation.

You can also have a legal opinion letter drafted by a Canadian immigration attorney that can help facilitate an easier crossing at the Canadian point of entry.

Individual Rehabilitation

For those who do not qualify for deemed criminal rehabilitation, there is another way to permanently overcome inadmissibility. Starting five years after the completion of their sentence, a person can apply for individual rehabilitation. The result is the same as deemed rehabilitation, however individual rehabilitation requires a person to fill out an application and provide the Canadian government with adequate documentation to prove that they are eligible for criminal rehabilitation.

Inadmissibility due to crimes committed in Canada cannot be overcome with criminal rehabilitation, either deemed or individual. Inadmissibility of that nature can be overcome with a record suspension from the Parole Board of Canada.

Application Procedure

Applying for individual rehabilitation can be quite complicated. An application form must be filled out and send to a Canadian visa office. Documentation on all previous criminal convictions must be included with an application. In addition, the Canadian government charges application fees for criminal rehabilitation applications. The fees are $200CAD for non-serious criminality and $1000 for serious criminality.

How Canadim Can Help

Hiring a representative to help you with your rehabilitation application can save a lot of hassle and make the process much easier. Fill out this form for a free confidential consultation with one of our associates:

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If you have questions or concerns relating to criminal rehabilitation please contact us and a member of the Canadim Team will be happy to discuss your options.

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