Last Updated on November 7, 2016
Basic information on TRPs
A person who has been deemed inadmissible to Canada for criminal reasons may still enter the country if they are issued a TRP.
Federal immigration authorities will generally only issue a TRP in exceptional cases where the benefits of a person entering Canada outweigh the risks of allowing the person to enter Canada. Any decision to allow an inadmissible person to enter Canada with a TRP must be made in line with Canada’s social, humanitarian and economic policies. These decisions must also take into account the health and security of all Canadian citizens.
TRPs will sometimes be issued to allow criminally inadmissible people to attend family events and business visits. TRPs will also be issued to people who are likely to bring benefits to Canada by entering the country. These kinds of people include famous musicians or athletes with prior convictions who are entering Canada to perform in a concert or sporting event.
Note: If you are from a country whose citizens are required to obtain a visitor visa in order to enter Canada, you must obtain this visa along with a TRP in order to enter Canada. For a list of countries whose citizens are required to obtain a visitor visa in order to enter Canada, click here.
Eligibility for a Temporary Resident Permit
A person must have been declared inadmissible to Canada in order to be eligible to receive a TRP. The decision on whether or not to issue a TRP is at the full discretion of CIC and will take into the following factors:
- Whether the need for the inadmissible person to enter Canada is compelling.
- Whether the benefits of the inadmissible person’s presence in Canada outweigh the risks that he or she poses to Canadian society.
- Whether the person went to jail for his or her crime. Usually, if a person served a jail term, he or she will not be eligible for a TRP.
Successful TRP applicants will usually be those who can prove that they do not pose a risk to Canada and that they will not burden Canada’s welfare system. Any evidence that can help prove these two qualities will increase a person’s chances of success.
A person will also be more likely to obtain a TRP if they are trying to enter Canada for a short time to participate in a specific event whose existence can easily be proven with evidence, such as a business conference.
When deciding whether or not to grant a TRP, immigration officers are allowed to use their discretion. However, officers are still bound by law to make TRP decisions that are fair and take account of all relevant factors. With regards to TRP decisions, these relevant factors include:
- The severity of the original crime.
- The likelihood that the person will commit another crime.
If an officer is found by the court to have made a TRP-related decision that did not take crucial factors into account or was unfair, the decision will be overturned and sent to a new officer to be re-evaluated.
Usually, a person can apply for a TRP from abroad or at a Canadian port of entry. A person who was convicted of participating in organized crime, however, has to apply for a TRP from abroad.
Note: Individuals will not be eligible to obtain a TRP if less than 12 months have passed since they failed to obtain refugee protection in Canada.
Validity of a Temporary Resident Permit
A TRP can be valid for a period of between one day and three years. When deciding how long the validity period of a TRP will be, authorities will consider the following factors:
- The length of the person’s visit to Canada. For example, if an inadmissible person is seeking to visit Canada to attend a week-long conference, the TRP will be issued with a validity period of one week.
- Whether there is a compelling need for the TRP to be issued.
- Whether there are risks involved in issuing the TRP and, if so, whether the compelling need outweighs these risks.
- If the person is applying for a second TRP, whether any new admissibility issues have arisen since the issuing of the first TRP.
- The fact that, after a certain period of time, TRP holders can become permanent residents of Canada. For more information on Applying for Additional Permits as a Temporary Resident Permit Holder, click here.
In cases where a TRP holder has also been issued a work permit or a study permit, the TRP will have a validity period equal to the validity period of the other permit.
Note: A TRP holder must obtain a study or work permit in order to study or work in Canada.
Conditions and Obligations of TRP Holders
All TRP holders:
- Must leave Canada if the TRP expires or is cancelled.
- Must apply for an additional TRP if they wish to maintain temporary residence in Canada.
- Must not work or study without a proper visa.
Those who do not fulfill these conditions may:
- Have their TRP cancelled.
- Be deemed inadmissible to Canada.
- Be removed from Canada.
TRPs do not normally allow their holders to leave and then re-enter Canada. In certain cases, though, the Canadian government can allow a TRP holder to leave and re-enter Canada. Allowing a TRP holder to leave and re-enter Canada is at the discretion of Canadian immigration officials and will depend on the following factors:
- Whether the TRP holder possesses a valid travel document or passport when attempting to re-enter Canada. Note: A TRP does not, by itself, count as a valid travel document.
- Whether the TRP holder is from a country whose citizens are required to have a temporary visa to enter Canada. If the holder is from one of these countries, he or she will have to acquire a temporary visa counterfoil in order to re-enter Canada. To find out if your country is one whose citizens are required to have a temporary visa, click here.
- Whether the TRP holder violated any of Canada’s border crossing laws. Even if a TRP holder has been pre-authorized to re-enter Canada, he or she will not be allowed to enter the country if he or she violates any of Canada’s border crossing laws.
If a TRP holder attempts to re-enter Canada but is unauthorized to do so, the TRP will immediately be cancelled and the holder will have to re-apply for a new TRP.
Immigration authorities also have the authority to cancel a TRP at any time that it deems appropriate. A person who has had their TRP cancelled will lose the ability to apply for Canadian permanent residence.
Once a TRP is cancelled, the permit holder will have to leave Canada immediately. If the person fails to leave Canada, they will be deemed inadmissible to Canada for failing to comply with the obligation to leave the country. This will make any subsequent attempts to enter Canada much more difficult.
In all cases where a TRP is cancelled, the permit holder will be sent a letter giving them the opportunity to respond to the cancellation and make an argument as to why the permit should not be cancelled.
Note: In cases where a person would like to come to Canada with his or her family, all family members will have to obtain their own TRP.
For more information on applying for a TRP, click here.
For more information on Temporary Resident Permit Fees, click here.