What is Criminal Rehabilitation?
Individuals with past convictions or criminal record which is hindering them from entering Canada have the chance to permanently waive off their inadmissibility by the process of Criminal Rehabilitation. Once the individual has succeeded in achieving criminal rehabilitation, he/she can travel to Canada. To obtain criminal rehabilitation the individual who had committed an offense in the past has to take permission from the Canadian Government to come to Canada by showing redeemed behavior and remorse towards his past behavior or offense. The individual must be able to prove he/she will not be a threat to Canadian society and has improved became an improved individual.
Who needs to apply for Criminal Rehabilitation?
The ability to apply for criminal rehabilitation depends upon the nature of offenses committed by the applicant. Any individual who has past criminal convictions and five years have passed since the sentence has been completed, is eligible to apply for criminal rehabilitation. If five years have not passed then the individual is ineligible to apply for criminal rehabilitation but may able to get a Temporary Resident Permit (TRP). The inadmissibility of an individual can be related to any offense that occurred in or outside of Canada against which he/she had sentencing. Few types of sentencing include but not limited to:
- Prison time
- Paying all fines
- Probation time
- Community service time, etc.
Minimum Requirements for Criminal Rehabilitation
Immigration officers will consider several factors while assessing the applicant’s application for criminal rehabilitation. The immigration officer may take into consideration the type of offense committed and the number of convictions encountered. The living style, behavior, and present demeanor will also be scrutinized by the officer. The following requisites are to be met for an individual to apply for criminal rehabilitation:
- A complete five years have passed since the completion of the sentence.
- The offense was committed outside the borders of Canada.
- The misdemeanor is recognized as an offense in Canada.
- The individual was convicted of the offense.
The officer will closely look into the applicant’s lifestyle and activities ever since the conviction. The types of improvements made on part of the applicant will be judged along with whether any further offenses were committed making sure there is no further risk of criminal activity by the applicant.
How to apply and important documents for Criminal Rehabilitation application:
To apply for Criminal Rehabilitation, the applicant must fill out a criminal rehabilitation application and attach the following documents along with the application:
- A proper application form for Criminal Rehabilitation i.e. Application for Criminal Rehabilitation (IMM1444); can be downloaded online.
- A statement explaining the circumstances under which the applicant was convicted. This statement should list the offenses committed, why they were committed, and how the applicant has improved ever since the sentencing. The statement should be convincing as if the officer feels a lack of remorse, he/she may reject the application. This is like a personal statement that should highlight the following elements:
- The applicant’s activities before the offense and after
- The applicant’s lifestyle and changes in it (if any)
- Genuine remorse insinuating re-offending unlikely to happen.
- A statement addressing the need for rehabilitation will give the officer an idea of how the applicant plans to re-integrate into society. The statement should include the community service the applicant had done, employment, social activities, volunteering, etc. The officer will take this statement well into consideration before granting criminal rehabilitation.
- Legal documents serving records for conviction describing the type of offense and sentence given. The documents should also prove the sentence has been completed.
- A letter of reference can be written by friends or colleagues who have known the applicant for a considerable amount of time and understand the applicant well.
- Criminal History Reports, the applicant must submit two criminal reports one being the FBI Criminal History Report and the other being the State Criminal History Report. The FBI criminal report will be highly considered by the officer as sometimes conviction is absent on the state clearances however present on the FBI report. The State criminal history reports show criminal activity in a particular state thus the applicant has to provide state reports of all states he/she has lived in until 18 years of age.
- Passport Copies
- Biometrics and photographs.
Offenses inside of Canada
Criminal rehabilitation is only for applicants who have been convicted for an offense outside of Canada preventing him/her from entering Canada. In case an applicant has committed an offense within Canada and has no foreign conviction the applicant can contact the Parole board of Canada for a record of suspension.
Processing Times & Costs for Criminal Rehabilitation Application
The time required to process an application depends purely on the complexity of the application. This means the reviewing officer will take time to scrutinize the complexity of the convictions, sentences, and verdicts. A minor conviction may take lesser time compared to major convictions. Thus, it completely depends upon the nature of the application and immigration officer.
The processing fee for Canadian Criminal Rehabilitation depends on how severe the conviction is. Minor convictions and non-serious crimes are CAD 200. Major convictions and serious crimes have a fee of CAD 1,000.
Successful Criminal Rehabilitation Applications
If the Criminal Rehabilitation application is successful, the individual will no longer be inadmissible to Canada. However, only if there is no re-offense. Criminal rehabilitation is important for individuals who intend to apply for Permanent Residence in Canada, either through Express Entry, Business Immigration, Provincial Nominee Program, or just want to visit Canada on Business Visit and do business or settle in Canada.
If past convictions and criminal records are hindering your way to Canada then let us help you, you may be eligible to apply for a Criminal Rehabilitation application.