Renewing PR Card While Outside of Canada

Posted in PR Card Renewal

Typically permanent residence status can only be maintained if the permanent resident is physically present in Canada for 730 days (two years) in the most recent five year period. Now if the residency requirements are not met then you are at the risk of losing your status.

Many of our clients call us and inform us that they have an expired PR card and need to re-enter Canada. They did not meet the residency requirements because they had to exist Canada for either employment reasons or because of a family emergency.

If this is your situation, please keep reading.

If you have an expired PR card and left Canada for the following below reasons you may still be eligible to renew your PR card with Humanitarian and Compassionate Arguments:

  1. Employment reason
  2. Family Emergency

Of course there are other reasons which can be considered as well. The above two are mentioned as they are the main reasons many have to leave Canada and do not meet the residency requirements.

How we can help is apply for a PR card renewal with H&C arguments and inform the officer as to why you could not meet the residency requirements.

Employment Reason

Many PR Card holders are forced to leave Canada as they were not able to find employment in Canada. Many find employment outside of Canada.

We can file a PR Card renewal and demonstrate that after several unsuccessful attempts in finding employment in Canada, you left Canada. However, your permenant resident is still Canada. That you still have significant ties to Canada and your intentions were always to return to Canada. The more ties you have to Canada the better.

Family Emergency

Many PR Card holders are forced to leave Canada as they have family members that need them to take care of them. For example, many cultures require sons/daughters to take care of their elders. Especially if the elders are ill and there is no one else to take care of them. Another example would be exiting Canada as there is an immediate family member who is severely ill and requires your daily assistance. In situations such as these, you are forced to exit Canada and perhaps return to Canada years later. As a result your PR card expired and you do not meet the residency requirements.

Do I Need the PR Card to Enter Canada?

A permanent resident does not need a PR card to travel to Canada if they are in a private vehicle. Of course, travel by private vehicle is pretty much limited to car travel across the US border. Permanent residents who present themselves to Canada Border Services (as they are now called) at a land border may or may not be asked questions about their residence history. If they are asked questions the officer may determine that the person is no longer a permanent resident if the officer believes that the necessary requirements are not met.

Individuals who hold a PR card are presumed to be permanent residents. Of course individuals who do not hold PR cards are presumed not to be permanent residents. Usually this means that a person arriving at a border in a private vehicle without a PR card is more likely to be asked questions that someone who crosses with a PR card. However, it does not make it automatic that a traveller will be questioned at all, beyond the standard routine questions that we all get asked.

Having said that, if you do not show your PR card at the onset, it is possible that you will not be able to enter without further questioning.

Loss of PR Status

Loss of permanent residence status is not automatic. It requires a determination by an officer. If no officer makes a decision that PR status is lost, then the person is still a permanent resident. This is very important for those persons who have an expired PR card and still wish to enter Canada.

Now, those who remain outside of Canada for too long risk being exposed to uncomfortable questioning, and losing their status as a result.

Making a proper presentation at the border is crucial. If this is not done, then you can risk losing your PR status.

At Akrami & Associates, we prepare you for the border crossing. We prepare you for the interview questioning and how to properly answer these questions. We also prepare an Entry Package for you to carry with you so that the officer is clear as to why you left, why you are seeking entry again and what your legal rights are.

Many of our clients have successfully entered Canada on an expired PR card with our Entry Package.

In essence, it does happen that people who were not able to meet the 730 day rule were still able to enter Canada. Thankfully the 730 day rule is not completely inflexible. The officer reviewing the case is allowed to consider Humanitarian and Compassionate factors. But Humanitarian and Compassionate factors are not clearly defined, and so no one should simply assume that they will qualify for this kind of flexibility.

Loss of PR Status at the Border

Loss of permanent resident status can be a very serious matter. At Akrami & Associates, we can help you understand your situation and inform you of the best route to re-enter Canada.

Contact Akrami & Associates Immigration Law firm


For further information with respect your Canadian immigration we invite you to contact our experienced immigration representatives.

Tags: PR Card Renewal Canadian Immigration Renewing PR Card While Outside of Canada

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