Do You Lose Your Visa If Arrested In Canada?

June 26, 2019

Losing your visa if you get arrested in Canada can affect a large group of people. At any given time, people staying in Canada on visas make up a significant amount of people in the country. In the 5 years since Canada began the 10-year visa program, over 3 million people have gotten them. That’s equivalent to about 8.1% of Canada’s population, and that doesn’t even include shorter visas.

Whether you’re on a visa for work, education, or travel, getting arrested can have serious implications. Today, we look at the consequences of being arrested while in Canada on a visa.

Visa Expectations

When you are staying in Canada on a visa you are expected to obey the laws of the local laws. If you are arrested, you will be tried in Canada and there is a possibility of losing your visa. As such, you should contact a criminal law firm as soon as possible.

Will I be Deported?

An arrest does not always mean that you will face deportation. Generally, it depends on a few factors. For instance, it’s fairly common for people to overstay their visa. If you are arrested and convicted after your visa expires, deportation is much more likely. And it will likely be difficult to regain entry.

Another important consideration is the type and severity of the crime and conviction. For instance, indictable offences are generally more severe and can have more intense consequences.

However, it’s not just indictable offences that can cause problems. Crimes of moral turpitude have a higher likelihood of deportation. As well, they can make it difficult to gain re-entry if you leave the country and may prevent you from extending your visa.

A few crimes of moral turpitude in Canada include:

Crimes of moral turpitude can make you inadmissible to Canada. For some minor crimes, like shoplifting theft under 5000, it’s possible to be allowed back into Canada 10 years after completing all sentencing.

Where is the Case Tried

If you are arrested in Canada you will face trial there. So if you are arrested in Toronto, you should hire a Toronto criminal law firm. Until the case is decided you are unable to leave the country.

Consular officials from our home country can offer a range of services, such as notifying family and providing a list of local lawyers. However, they are not able to interfere in judicial affairs, overrule decisions, or ask for special treatment.

Once you receive your sentence what happens next depends on your country of origin. For instance, Canada has treaties with over 100 countries that allow a transfer of offenders. If you’re coming from one of these countries, you may have the option to serve your sentence in your home country.

Other Consequences

Although may not lose your visa or face deportation as a result of a conviction, there are a number of consequences you may face if arrested abroad.

Depending on the crime, there is a real possibility of being denied entry to Canada in the future. As well, you may be unable to renew an existing visa which could result in losing access to your job or education.

If you are a student on a visa it’s especially important to get a criminal lawyer involved as soon as possible. It’s not uncommon for schools to suspend or expel a student, even before a conviction. Expulsion has the potential to lead to losing your student visa.

Hire a Toronto Criminal Law Firm

William Jaksa is a criminal defence lawyer with experience defending Americans arrested in Canada. He understands that you are more than your charges, as well as the unique challenges facing those arrested abroad.

Contact Jaksa today for a consultation.

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