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Are You Inadmissible To Enter Canada? A TRP May Let You Legally Cross The Border

Blog posted on by Evelyn Ackah in Inadmissibility Issues and Waivers and Criminal Inadmissibility

Are You Inadmissible To Enter Canada? A TRP May Let You Legally Cross The Border

If you are inadmissible to enter Canada due to a past criminal, security, health and other reason but want to visit Canada for business, holiday or a family reason, a Temporary Resident Permit (TRP) may be a solution to allow you to temporarily visit Canada. To be eligible for a TRP, your need to enter or stay in Canada must outweigh the health or safety risks to Canadian society, as determined by an immigration or a Canadian Border Service officer.

If you are refused entry to Canada because of criminal inadmissibility due to a criminal charge such as a DUI or conviction incident such as marijuana possession in your past, there may still be ways to enter the country.


One of the most stressful issues for people travelling to Canada is criminal inadmissibility. DUIs, an assault, possession of marijuana convictions even 30 or 40 years old can cause you to be deemed inadmissible to enter at the border.

  • Do you want to travel to Canada for vacation?
  • Does your job require you to travel to Canada?
  • Have you ever been charged with a crime, fingerprinted or convicted?

Criminal records today are digital. Canadian and U.S. immigration agencies are sharing electronic criminal data. If you're an American trying to enter Canada, your file can be flagged at the border, even if you haven't been charged yet or have not been convicted.

At Ackah Law, our practice receives calls every day from Americans and Canadians who have been stopped while trying to cross the border:

  • I'm a retired American who vacations every year in Canada and this year I can't enter due to a DUI in my 20s.
  • I travel to the U.S. several times a year and this time I was not allowed to cross the border.
  • I have a conviction for marijuana use in my history, but now it is legal. Will I have a problem at the border?

Who Can Apply For A Temporary Resident Permit?

If you have a valid reason to travel to Canada, but you are inadmissible, you may be eligible to qualify for a Temporary Resident Permit.

Valid reasons to apply for entry to Canada even if you are inadmissible may include:

  • travel for work
  • to visit an unwell family member
  • attendance at a family wedding

If you are criminally inadmissible to enter Canada, you must have been convicted of a criminal offence and:

  • have had less than 5 years pass since the completion of the sentence (including jail time, community service hours, probation and fee payment), OR
  • have had more than 5 years pass since the completion of the sentence, AND you have not applied for, or have yet to receive a decision on an application for criminal rehabilitation.

Temporary Resident Permits are issued for fixed periods of time, and you must leave Canada by the expiry date or get a new one before the original document expires. Obtaining a Temporary Resident Permit requires an application to be submitted. As with all IRCC immigration applications, there are fees to apply for a Temporary Resident Permit.

Book A Consultation

Do You Have A Canada Inadmissibility Issue?

Don't risk getting turned away at the border. Ackah Law can help you find out if you are inadmissible to enter Canada and how to overcome an inadmissibility issue.

Contact Ackah Law at (403) 452‑9515 or contact@ackahlaw.com.

Evelyn L. Ackah, BA, LL.B.

Founder/Managing Lawyer

Ms. Ackah is passionate about immigration law because it focuses on people and relationships, which are at the core of her personal values. Starting her legal career as a corporate/commercial ...

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Morgan Campbell
Managing Partner, Boyden Canada

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