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Temporary Resident Permit (TRP) Rules, Legislation and Impact Regulation


What is a TRP

Usually, when an individual does not meet the requirements of the IRPA (Immigration and Refugee Protection Act), they are:

  • Denied temporary resident or permanent resident visas abroad
  • Refused entry at a port of entry
  • Denied Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA)
  • Denied processing within Canada.

That said, there are some instances where there are compelling reasons for the immigration officer to issue a Temporary Resident Permit (TRP) so an individual who does not satisfy the requirements of the Act can enter or stay in Canada.

The IRPA subsection 24(1) permits designated officers to issue TRPs to certain inadmissible foreign nationals when their “circumstances are justified”.

As such, TRPs are only awarded in exceptional cases, where the officers feel that the circumstances of granting the individual access into Canada meet the country’s social, economic, and humanitarian commitments without compromising the health and security of its people.

The officer who issues the permit must leave a record of the decision to allow access, which is why you need a compelling reason to get into Canada if you’re inadmissible. Accountability and clear record keeping is critical for the preparation of the Annual Report to Parliament.

The TRP holder is then free to enter or remain in Canada for the period of the TRP, during which the foreign national has been awarded temporary resident status in the country. For permits longer than six months, the foreign national is allowed to apply for a study and/or work permit.

Upon expiry or cancellation of the TRP, the foreign national is expected to leave the country or renew their permit – if applicable.

What Are the Rules/Laws

A delegated authority can issue a TRP to a foreign national who is inadmissible if they determine that the need for the individual to enter or stay in the country is compelling; and that the need for the individual’s presence in Canada outweighs any risk posed to the citizens and country.

Officers typically become aware that a foreign national is admissible when:

  • Reviewing applications under the IRPA
  • The foreign national is aware of their inadmissible status and requests a TRP
  • The foreign national gets reported under A44(1) for inadmissibility under IRPA

In the second scenario, where the foreign national approaches the officer for consideration for a TRP, the officer should consult a designated decision maker in order to:

  • Evaluate if the individual meets the eligibility criteria for a TRP
  • Evaluate the appropriate risk factors
  • Consider whether the individual is under a warrant or removal order

The individual is not eligible for a TRP if less than one year has passed since their claim for refugee protection was denied (or abandoned or withdrawn as indicated under subsection A24(4)). This 12-month ban does not, however, prevent the officer from considering a TRP for a human trafficking victim.

Besides being ineligible for TRP consideration, these permits should not be issued if there is no compelling need, even if the risks and inadmissibility are minor. For instance, a TRP should not be considered for persons under a removal order without consulting with the Case Management Branch; or for reasons of administrative convenience.

Are You Eligible?

A TRP allows you and your family to temporarily enter Canada. However, there are restrictions on your TRP, and there are some conditions that will affect your eligibility, such as:

  • Incompliance with conditions imposed on your TRP
  • Overstaying your welcome in Canada
  • Leaving and re-entering Canada without prior authorization
  • You are inadmissible to Canada on grounds other than those for which the initial TRP was issued
  • You worked or studied without the required permits
  • You submitted an expired or soon to expire passport
  • Situations that make you inadmissible have not been resolved, despite counselling my CIC

TRP Conditions

Conditions associated with your TRP can change, and you’ll need to comply with any of these conditions. You can have your TRP for a maximum of three years, and conditions imposed might include:

  • A work or study permit is required to do either of these things
  • You can’t leave and re-enter Canada without prior-authorization
  • You can not stay longer than your authorized period of stay

Why Should I Apply for a TRP

Some people don’t realize the usefulness of a TRP and believe they can enter Canada – even with a criminal record – by simply not mentioning it at the Canadian border. This is not possible for any U.S. citizen or resident because the two North American countries have been sharing criminal databases since 2010.

For instance, the instant an American is arrested and convicted of a crime, such as a DUI, assault, or drug trafficking, that person’s file is added to the FBI criminal database that is then shared with the RCMP’s criminal database in Canada, giving the officers at the Canadian border full access to the person’s criminal history.

A TRP can enable someone who is inadmissible to Canada to temporarily enter Canada with a DUI. Anyone with a criminal record outside of Canada looking to enter int Canada is strongly advised to contact Pardon Canada prior to attempting to cross the border. If an applicant is not adequately prepared prior to entering Canada with a DUI, they may not be able to travel to Canada.  

If you purposefully lie to the border agents, you will not only be caught and denied entry, but also face severe consequences for breaking the law. You could, for instance, get banned from crossing the international border for a number of years. Moreover, an individual cannot be deemed admissible to Canada until 10 years have passed following the completion of their full sentence.

This can be devastating, considering that you will be kept from entering Canada until you have served all of your jail term, paid all fines or other restitution, completed all probation, and completed any rehabilitation mandated by the court, and then waited for ten years.

Considering the severe consequences of trying to cheat and force your way into Canada without seeking a TRP, it is not a worthwhile endeavor. While the rules for granting TRPs may be strict, any inadmissible person with a compelling reason to be in Canada cannot be denied access.

The Positive Impact On Your Life With a TRP

If you have been deemed inadmissible to Canada due to a criminal record, you may still be let into the country if you’re eligible for a TRP.

Immigration officers only issue a TRP under exceptional circumstances where the benefits of the person entering Canada are greater than the potential risks of permitting the foreigner into the country.

The decision to allow an inadmissible person into Canada via a TRP must be made with consideration of Canada’s social, economic, and humanitarian policies, while taking into account the health and security of the population.

There are many benefits of obtaining a TRP. For instance:

  • A criminally inadmissible person can cross the border to attend a family event or business conference
  • A person likely to benefit the Canadian economy can also be permitted, like a famous musician or athlete to perform in a concert or participate a sporting event

You should note that inadmissible persons originating from a country whose citizens are required to have a visa to enter Canada must obtain both the visa and a TRP to get into the country.

Successful TRP Applications

An applicant who has successfully applied and obtained a TRP must have proven that he/she does not pose a threat to Canada, and that he/she will not burden the country’s welfare system. Any kind of proof that supports these two aspects can increase your chances of success.

You are also more likely to obtain a TRP if you are trying to get into the country for a limited amount of time, like to participate in an event that is widely known, which makes it easy to prove how long you intend to be in the country.

In some cases, a TRP holder who is let into the country for a period of more than 6 months can be issued with a study or work permit. In this case, the TRP will be valid for a period equal to the validity of the other permit(s). Being able to get these permits allows you study and/or work in Canada.

Having a TRP comes with certain conditions for the foreigner:

  • The TRP holder must leave the country if the TRP is cancelled or expires
  • You must not study or work without getting the proper visa
  • The initial TRP cannot be extended once it expire
  • You are not allowed to leave and re-enter Canada with your TRP, except in certain cases where the Canadian government permits it
  • You must apply for a subsequent TRP to remain as a temporary resident in the country

Subsequent TRPs

One of the best things about obtaining a TRP is the ability to apply for a subsequent TRP before the initial one expires, allowing you to stay in the country further to continue with your endeavors. That said, any subsequent TRP can only be granted if the reasons under which you were granted the initial TRP have not changed, and if you complied with all the requirements of the initial TRP.

One other benefit of a TRP is that it makes you eligible to apply for Canadian permanent residence. However, if you try to re-enter Canada but are not authorized to do so, and your TRP gets cancelled, you lose that privilege.

“If you want to travel to Canada with a DUI or any criminal record, contact the professionals at Pardon Canada toll free at 1-866-922-8159. We can help ensure a hassle free travel across the Canadian border”

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