Overview on Renewing Your Canadian Permanent Resident Card
Related Applications and Additional Information:
- Replace Your COPR/Record of Landing
- Permanent Resident Travel Document (PRTD)
- Search of Citizenship Records
- Am I Still a Permanent Resident if My PR Card Expires?
- Common Mistakes on a PR Card Application
- How to Correct Mistakes on Your PR Card
- How to Renounce Your Permanent Residency
Step by Step Guide to Renewing Your PR Card with Immigroup's Expert Assistance
- Download our simplified PR Card renewal kit
- Complete the PR Card application
- Make copies of the following documents:
- Valid or recently expired Canadian Permanent Resident Card
- Biographical page of your valid foreign passport OR biographical page of your foreign passport at the time of landing in Canada
- Name change document (only if your name has changed since you landed in Canada)
- Have PR Card photos taken by your local passport photographer
- Provide proof of urgency if you qualify: You can request your application be classified as ‘urgent’ but the government has the right to accept or deny your request. Here are reasons for why an application would be classified as ‘urgent’:
- Job related: you need your PR Card to either keep your job or get a new job
- Education related: you cannot begin or continue schooling without your new PR Card
- Death in the family or medical reasons: you need your PR Card to travel outside of Canada due to a death in your family or a sickness of a close family member
- (Optional) Scan and email or fax your completed forms and supporting documentation to Immigroup for a quick review: EMAIL [email protected] or FAX 416-640-2650
- Mail your completed forms plus the supporting documentation to Immigroup (we will provided you witht eh correct address at the time)
- After Immigroup receives your completed forms and the correct documentation, we will review everything and submit your application to the government. If there is anything missing we will contact you first.
- You will receive a confirmation email from us once your application has been submitted to IRCC
- You will receive status updates on the progress of your application after 3 weeks for urgent applications and 3 months for normal PR Card renewal applications.
- Receive your PR Card by mail. (Note: IRCC reserves the right to ask you to pick up your PR Card from their office in your region of Canada.)
Canadian PR Card FAQs and Troubleshooting
Basic PR Card Questions
Who needs a PR Card and why?
A permanent resident card is the main way Canadian permanent residents (formerly known as landed immigrants) prove their status to government agencies though a Record of Landing is also valid in certain circumstances.
As a Canadian permanent resident travelling outside of Canada, if you hold a passport from a country whose citizens are required to have a visa to visit Canada, you will be asked to present your Permanent Resident Card before you board the carrier (airline, ship, etc) that will take you back to Canada. All Permanent Residents of Canada must show their PR card to a Canada Border Services officer when returning to Canada from international travel. The Permanent Resident Card is the only ID which shows proof of permanent resident status when returning to Canada on a commercial carrier (airplane, ship, bus, or train).
Travelling without a PR card
- Do so at your own risk
- Do you hold a valid Passport on the below list?
- Do you have your expired Permanent Resident Card?
- Have you already filed your PR card application with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) and have a copy of the full application to take with you? Having a copy of the application is extremely helpful when the customs agent asks for proof that you are a permanent resident. If the decision has been made on the application, it is also beneficial to show a printed copy of this as well; if not, print the page showing that the application is received and in process. Click here for your Application Status.
You may advise the customs agent that the application has already been filed, the a positive decision has been made (if applicable), and that you will make sure not to leave without it in the future. Remember, they hold all the power, so be pleasant.
- Please feel free to contact us if you need help or aren’t sure what to do
PR Card Ugent Processing
To have your Permanent Resident Card application processed with urgency the following are required:
- Minimum 3 weeks between the date your application is submitted and your departure date
- Completed application free of errors and omissions. NOTE: When applications are returned by IRCC, the officer may only indicate some of the mistakes they have noticed rather than every problem which needs to be corrected for the application to be processed. If your application has more than one mistake, up to a month can be added to the processing time each time the application is returned. However, if your application has been returned, this means that a IRCC officer is assigned to your file and you do not have to start from the beginning again.
- Proof of Urgency. This must be in the form of a ticket on a commercial carrier for which at least partial payment has been made.
What is acceptable proof of urgency?
The following reasons might be accepted to issue your PR Card faster:
- a death in the family where you must travel to the funeral
- a serious illness of an immediate family member where you must travel to visit
- you need a valid PR Card to either continue to work in your job or to accept a new job offer
- you need your PR Card to travel internationally for a mandatory work assignment
- you need a valid PR Card to stay in school or to start school.
In order for your urgency request to be considered, it must
- be made in writing
- contain actual proof that you need your PR Card to travel internationally:
- proof of death of your family member
- proof of your immediate family member's hospitalization
- a letter from your current or future employer requesting a valid PR Card as proof of status
- a letter from your employer about your mandatory business travel
- a letter from your school requesting a valid PR Card as proof of status
- include the dates of your travel and proof that you are actually undertaking that travel (example: purchased plane tickets with your name on them)
Urgency processing is always at the discretion of the person reviewing your application. Nobody can guarantee that your request will be accpted.
The only way to find out if your request will be successful is to ask with proof of a need to travel when you apply for your PR Card.
Countries whose citizens do not need a visa to enter Canada as a visitor
Permanent residents from countries whose citizens do not require a visa to travel to Canada may be allowed entry into Canada based on the strength of their passports plus a eTA but, if your status is discovered, your eTA application will be refused and you will have to apply for a permanent resident travel document (PRTD).
|Antigua and Barbuda||Finland||Latvia||Portugal||Taiwan|
|Australia||France||Liechtenstein||Saint Kitts and Nevis||United Kingdom|
|Croatia||Israel*||New Zealand||Solomon Islands|
|Denmark||Japan||Papua New Guinea||Sweden|
- Citizens of Israel require an Israeli passport to waive the visa requirement. Holders of any other type of Israeli travel document require visas
- Citizens of Lithuania and Poland require biometric passports to enter Canada without visas
- Citizens of Taiwan must have passports containing their ID number in order to enter Canada without a visa
Worst Case Scenario
If you left Canada without your valid Permanent Resident Card card, you may not be allowed to enter Canada and you may have to stay in the country you are traveling from.
You will likely be told that to enter Canada without your valid PR Card, you must visit the closest Canadian Diplomatic Mission (Canadian Embassy, Consulate, or High Commission) responsible for issuing a Permanent Resident Returning to Canada Single Entry Travel Document. A Permanent Resident Travel Document is similar to a visa which is attached to your passport. This document is valid for a limited period of time and enables you to gain entry to Canada only once.
I don’t have one of the above Passports
Immigroup does not advise any permanent resident to leave Canada without a valid Permanent Resident Card. If you must leave under emergency circumstances and do not have time to wait for your PR card to be issued (2-4 weeks with urgent processing), click here to read about the Permanent Resident Travel Document.
I can’t wait 3 weeks before travelling
If you need to travel before your PR Card can be issued, you must apply for a Permanent Resident Travel Document at the nearest Canadian Diplomatic Mission (Canadian Consulate, Embassy, or High Commission).
Please remember the following:
- Have the Travel Document application filled out correctly before you leave.
- Have all necessary supporting documents. Document check list for Travel Document application
- Before leaving Canada, find out which Canadian Diplomatic Mission is responsible for the country you are travelling to. NOTE: Not all Canadian Diplomatic Missions issue Travel Documents. Diplomatic Missions are very busy, and it is always safer (and sometimes faster) to take your application in person rather than mailing your personal documents to them. Reasons not to mail your application include: potential loss of personal documents, difficulty in communicating with the Diplomatic Mission, and lack of options to check the status of your application.
- If you don’t have a choice and you must mail your application then follow these guidelines:
- Research the nearest Canadian Diplomatic Mission to your travel destination before sending your application
- Determine how you are allowed to check the status of your application (phone, fax, email)
- Just because it’s written on the website does not make it so: confirm everything by phone.
- Give yourself ample time for this process.
- Did you know? Immigroup can be your representative and communicate with the Canadian Diplomatic Mission on your behalf as well as review your application before you go. Click here if you need our assistance with the Travel Document process.
The Permanent Residence Questionnaire
When applying to replace your expiring or lost Permanent Resident Card, you may receive a residence questionnaire. Residence Questionnaires are sent out to any applicant who appears to fail the residence requirement as well as to 10% of all applicants at random. If you receive the residence questionnaire, you must complete it accurately and honestly and you must return it within the time requested. If you do not comply you could lose your status and possibly be deported. Some applicants who receive the residence questionnaire may also have to attend an interview. Failure to attend this interview may result in loss of status or deportation. To see a sample of the questionnaire, please click here.
Immigroup statistics for Permanent Resident Card service
- Average processing time for Permanent Resident Card regular: 5-6 months
- Average processing time for PR Card urgent: 35 business days
- Average processing time for Permanent Resident Card top priority: 31 business days
- Status in Jeopardy or Unusual Case Success Rate: 100% in 2012
- Mistakes made by Immigroup per 100 applications: 0% in 2012
- Updated - monthly on the same date, by 3rd day of month More info
- We guarantee our work
- 6 month – card replacement guarantee
- Purchase a Right of Citizenship application and receive a 20% discount
- Receive a 20 minute in-depth consultation on complex immigration matters More info
What is a Permanent Resident Card?
A permanent resident card is the main way Canadian perment residents of all ages(formerly known as landed immigrants) prove their status to government agencies You must show your PR Card when returning to Canada after travelling internationally by any commercial carrier (i.e. plane, train, boat or bus). If you hold a passport from a country where the citizens are required to have a visa to visit Canada, you will be asked to present the Permanent Resident Card before you board the carrier that will take you back to Canada. You will also need to show your PR Card to the Border Services officer at the Canadian port of entry to prove your permanent resident status.
How do I get a Permanent Resident Card?
To get a permanent resident card directly through the government, you should go to IRCC’s website and read the instruction guide (IMM 5445 ). You should complete the application forms and pay the application fees (making sure you get your fee receipt and submit it with your application). Finally, mail your application to the Case Processing Centre in Sydney, Nova Scotia.If you would like to use Immigroup to file your Permanent Resident Card application, download the forms and submit them to our office by fax (416-640-2650), email, mail, courier, or in person . If you are using a service like Immigroup’s, you will need to complete a "Use of Representative" (IMM 5476 ), included in our package.
I am new Permanent Resident of Canada, when will I get my PR Card?
You should get your Permanent Resident card within approximately 60 days of landing in Canada Sometimes it can take slightly longer. If you have not received your PR Card within 60 days of landing in Canada, you should contact IRCC.
Where do I mail my Permanent Resident Card Application directly to IRCC?
If you are sending your application by regular mail, you should address the package to:
Case Processing Centre
P.O. Box 10020
However, if you are sending your application by courier, you should address the package to:
Case Processing Centre
210 George Street
If you would like our office to assist you with the application, address your package to:
57 Westchester Drive
How do I pay the Permanent Resident Card fee?
All IRCC fees must be paid in Canadian dollars. You can pay the $50 fee in one of two ways:
- Online with
- A Visa, Mastercard or American Express credit card
- A printer and
- An email address
- In person at a Canadian financial institution. In order to do so you must get an original fee receipt (IMM 5401 ) from IRCC.
How long does it take to get a PR Card?
A Permanent Resident Card will be mailed out to all new immigrants usually within 60 days of landing in Canada. The processing time for renewals, replacements for lost or stolen PR Cards, or Permanent Resident Cards for applicants who entered Canada before June 28, 2002 is currently 151 calendar days as of August 2014, but is subject to change at any time. For updates in processing times for Canadian Permanent Resident cards, please check the Refugees, Immigration and Citizenship Canada website.
What are the PR Card photo requirements?
The Permanent Resident card photo should measure 35 mm x 45 mm (1 3/8? x 1 3/4?) . The photos can be either back and white or color. Photos must have been taken within the last 12 months to ensure an up-to-date likeness. You must be facing the camera directly, with a neutral expression. The back of the photo should bear the date the photo was taken. You should take the photo specifications from Appendix B with you to the photographer.
The PR Card application asks for work and educational history but I do not work or go to school. What do I do?
You are only required to provide work and educational history for the years that you have been a Canadian Permanent Resident. If you have not worked or gone to school within the past 5 years, simply write “Not Applicable” for this question.
What if I have changed my name?
You may change the name on your Permanent Resident Card if you have legally changed your name through the province of your residence or through marriage. To change the name on your PR Card, you must include the following with your application:
- a certified copy of the change of name document (divorce certificate , marriage certificate , provincial legal change of name certificate )
- a certified copy of a provincial document bearing the new name such as a driver’s license, health card, or provincial photo ID card
- a copy of your Record of Landing . If you do not have your Record of Landing, you must apply for a Verification of Status document (link) to change your name on your PR Card.
How do I check the status of my application once it has been sent to IRCC?
Please visit https://services3.IRCC.gc.ca/ecas/?app=ecas&lang=en where you can check the status of your application. You must have the following information to check the status of your application online:
- The applicant’s date of birth
- The applicant’s country of birth
- The applicant’s last name
- ONE of the following:
- Applicant’s client ID number
- Applicant’s Record of Landing or Confirmation of Permanent Residence number
- Applicant’s IMM5401 receipt of payment number for the receipt submitted with the application
- Applicant’s Immigration File number
- Applicant’s Permanent Resident Card number
- Applicant’s Citizenship Receipt number
- Applicant’s Citizenship File number
Without this information you will not be able to check the status of your application. If you are missing the required documentation and / or you would like assistance with this process please contact us at Immigroup at 1-866-760-2623.
What should I do with my old PR Card now that I have received a new one?
You should destroy your old Permanent Resident card by shredding. Do not throw your PR card in the garbage as this could facilitate identity fraud.
I have been instructed by IRCC to pick up my PR card in person. What should I bring with me?
Most PR cards are mailed directly to the applicant at the mailing address indicated on their application. However, some applications are randomly selected to have the Permanent Resident card picked up in person at the local IRCC office. If you have been advised by IRCC to pick up your PR card in person, you should bring the following documents with you:
- All Original documents you submitted copies of with your Permanent Resident card application (Record of Landing, Notices of Assessment, Driver’s License, etc)
- All passports in your possession
- Original pickup notice mailed to you by IRCC.
Can I send all my family members’ PR card applications together?
Yes, but you should be sure to put each application in a separate envelope in case they are processed at separate times. IRCC attempts to process family members’ applications together, however this is not always possible and is not guaranteed.
My PR Card is expiring soon or has already expired. What do I do now?
If you want to travel outside of Canada, you must apply to renew your Permanent Resident card and take the new card with you when you leave Canada. You do not need to have a valid PR card to remain a permanent resident of Canada, and the act of not having a Permanent Resident card does not change your status as a permanent resident. However, you may have trouble proving your status to apply for jobs or obtain government services such as healthcare if you do not show a valid PR card.
Can I renew my PR Card outside of Canada?
No, you cannot renew your Permanent Resident card from outside of Canada. You must be physically present in Canada to submit an application for a PR card, and you must state the city on the application where you are signing and dating the declaration. In order to maintain permanent resident status in Canada, you must have spent at least two years out of the previous five years living in Canada.
What is a Record of Movement?
Every time you enter a particular country, your passport is scanned by the customs official. If you are a permanent resident of Canada, your Permanent Resident card is scanned as well when you enter Canada. You may request a list of your entries to any country to be provided with your PR card application in the event that you do not have two Notices of Assessment from the past 5 years, or you are specifically instructed to do so by IRCC. NOTE: Records must be obtained from each country individually. Also, only your entries to a country are recorded; there is no record of your exits from the country.
How do I get back to Canada if my PR card has already expired?
You must apply for a Travel Document before returning to Canada.
I think I have lost my Permanent Resident status.
In order to meet the residency requirements, you must spend at least two years out of five inside Canada to remain a permanent resident. This means you must spend 730 days out of every 1825 days inside Canada. Any permanent resident who has spent more than 1095 days outside of Canada during a five year period is considered not to have met the residency requirement and has forfeited their status as a permanent resident if they are not inside Canada when they go over the limit. The only way to get back into Canada is to apply for a Travel Document at the nearest Canadian Diplomatic Mission. NOTE: Permanent residence status may be revoked at the discretion of IRCC. This means that you could lose your status even though you have spent fewer than 1095 days outside of Canada within the past five year period if IRCC thinks that you have not fulfilled your obligations as a permanent resident. We recommend that you spend as much time in Canada as possible and, if you hold a passport from a country where citizens are required to have a visa to visit Canada, you should limit your time outside of Canada to around half as many days as the maximum (about 500 days per five years) just to be safe. Keep in mind that Permanent Resident status in Canada is a privilege with obligations that must be met, and not a right that you are entitled to once you have been granted this status. To find out whether you are in danger of losing your status next time you renew your Permanent Resident card, you can contact us for a consultation.
What if my permanent Resident Card is lost, destroyed, or stolen?
If your PR card has been lost, destroyed, or stolen, you should contact the police and file a report. When you apply for a replacement, you should complete page 4 of the application detailing the circumstances of the loss or theft. If you landed in Canada after 2002 but never received your first Permanent Resident card, you should write the circumstances on page 4 of the application.
My PR Card contains a typo – how can I fix it?
This depends on both what the typo is (incorrect date of birth, misspelled name, etc) and why the typo has occurred. If the same incorrect information is listed on your Record of Landing, you must request an amendment to your Record of Landing. If the typo does not appear on your Record of Landing, but is simply a mistake by IRCC, you must apply for a new PR card. You may contact IRCC about these problems at 1-866-242-2100. If you would like assistance with this, please contact us at 1-866-760-2623.
I have a criminal record. Can I still renew my PR card?
If you have been convicted of a crime since becoming a permanent resident of Canada, this does not affect your status unless you have specifically been advised by IRCC. However, you could have problems gaining entry to other countries, especially the United States, if you decide to travel internationally. Also, a criminal record may affect your Canadian citizenship application whenever you choose to apply. If you have concerns about becoming a Canadian Citizen because of a criminal record you should contact Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada or you can call us for a consultation at 1-866-760-263.
I am travelling and need a PR Card fast.
IRCC will process applications on an expedited basis if you have proof of travel, such as a plane ticket and proof of purchase. You must include this proof with your application. If you need help applying for expedited processing of your Permanent Resident card application, you may contact IRCC at 1-866-242-2100 or you may contact us at 1-866-760-2623.
My application was sent back to me. What do I do?
- Correct all mistakes indicated by the officer and follow any instructions
- Double check your entire application to make sure there are no other errors
- Return the whole application back to IRCC with the letter and instructions attached
- Send the package to the attention of the officer who sent your application back to you.
I did not tell the truth on my application and the government just contacted me. What should I say?
You should always tell the truth and disclose any pertinent information when dealing with the government. Otherwise you may be accused of misrepresentation and your Permanent Resident status may be revoked. If you are not sure what to do, you can call Immigroup for a consultation.
Why should I use Immigroup?
- We have helped thousands of clients obtain their Permanent Resident Card. This gives us the experience that you can utilize.
- We make sure that we submit the best possible application for every single client.
- We have been in business since 2004.
- Our staff members have years of experience in the immigration field.
- You can call us between 8:00am and 6:00pm Eastern Time and speak to a live professional.
- More than half a million people visit www.immigroup.com each year to use our great tools and information.
- Our legal fees are disclosed on our website. Not many law firms are willing to do that!
- We make it easy for you to get started on your application by email, phone, or fax.
- Customer service and sound and ethical advice are our highest priority. Once you have used us you will feel the difference knowledge, service, and loyalty makes.
- We think outside the box to help you with your case, but we don’t take clients on just because they can pay! Expect an honest opinion – we will advise you if applying is not in your best interest.
- We go out on a limb to give you the highest level of service.
- We don’t take short cuts - we are perfectionists!
I am traveling and need my card fast. How quickly can you get it?
In the majority of cases, you will receive your Permanent Resident card within 15 – 35 business days of filing an urgent application. Please click here for our most up to date statistics and disclaimer.
Can you guarantee everything will work out if I use you?
No application has a guaranteed successful outcome whether you submit it yourself, use our company, or hire the most expensive lawyer in Canada. However, the great thing about Immigroup is that you can see statistics of the success rate of our past applications. If your PR card does not come in the time frame, we will refund the difference between urgent and regular service.
What if Immigroup makes a mistake on my application?
Immigroup has the highest standards in hiring and training. Mistakes that effect the processing time of your application are extremely rare. However, if Immigroup makes a mistake on your application which causes a delay in processing, we will take full responsibility and process a refund appropriate to the situation.
Why should I hire Immigroup when I can do the application on my own?
You can definitely do any application on your own without hiring a company to help you. However, when you use Immigroup, you gain these advantages over people who do it themselves:
- can be completely sure that the best possible application was submitted. This means that there will be no mistakes, errors, or omissions which could cause delays or refusals of an application.
- This also means that Immigroup will offer you the most ethical and sound advice regarding your application. We will tell you if something in your application works against you or could cause problems in the future.
- Immigroup has years of experience which can be leveraged in your favor to know what works and what doesn’t in an application.
- Using Immigroup will also save you time because you don’t have to fight with the government to submit an application or follow up on it. You can simply call or email any time you want to know the status of your application.
- Immigroup offers 20% off our service fee for every additional application.
- Immigroup offers 20% off our service fee for returning clients.
Can you give me free support or where can I get free support?
We are committed to helping everyone with their immigration needs. This is why www.immigroup.com offers free tools and information to answer all types of immigration questions. Immigroup does charge a fee for all services, but we are always looking for feedback on how we can further help our community. Our email address is [email protected].
I have one important question, but I don’t need the full service. What can I do?
You can easily search our database of FAQs. However, if you still can’t find the answer to your question, email us your question and you will receive a response within 2 business days. Depending on the complexity of your question, you may be advised to schedule a consultation with one of our immigration practitioners to ensure that you receive the best advice. The cost for a consultation is $84.75 (tax included) which is up to 30 minutes; however, if you retain Immigroup for a full service after the consultation, this fee well be deducted from the cost of the service. Consultations are available in person at our Toronto office or by phone. (Other options are available for hearing-impaired persons.) Call us at 1-866-760-2623 or email at [email protected] to schedule your consultation.
I called your office and did not get the answer I needed. What can I do?
Only general information is available when you call our office. If you are still unsure how you should proceed, contact us to schedule a consultation to discuss the details of your specific case.
How can I check the status of my application?
Checking the status of your PR card application is simple. If you have filed an urgent application, please contact us 10 business days after your application has been submitted. For a Regular PR application you may contact us after 45 days to check the status. You can check the status using one of two methods:
- By phone
Contact our office during business hours and state you are a Permanent Resident card client that needs a status check on your application. We will confirm your contact information and then contact you within one business day to advise of the status of your application.
- By email
Email us at [email protected] and advise us that you are a current client and you would like to check the status of your application. Your message should contain following:
- applicant’s first and last name,
- type of service: the subject should be PR card status check.
I used Immigroup but I lost my PR Card. do I have to do the entire process again?
Yes, the application process will have to be completed once again. The good news is we have a copy of your application, so this will speed up the process. Also please note that if you lost your card 6 month from the date you paid we will offer you a 50% discount on our service fees.
Do you offer any discounts?
Yes, returning clients are offered a 20% discount on our service fees. Clients who submit multiple applications are also offered a 20% discount on any additional services after the first application.
I need your help, but I can’t afford the fees? Can you help?
We do our best to keep things affordable, but unfortunately we are unable to offer any discounts in addition to the ones above.
My case is complex, are you the right firm to use?
Immigroup is an industry leader in Permanent Resident card application processing and assistance. In addition to PR card applications, we also have years of experience processing much more complicated. When it comes to PR card applications our firm is the leading firm processing these applications. You can rest assured you are in good hands. If we feel something is out of our understanding the agent will let you know.
Do you know something that the government does not?
No, but we have 8 years of experience dealing with Permanent Resident Card applications. We are aware of changes in the application procedure as they happen, and we know what IRCC will accept and what they won’t, which is sometimes not exactly what is listed on their website. Please see our case knowledge in the PR Card Application area:
- Request for urgent processing of your Permanent Resident Card
- Name change or date of birth issues
- Lack of sufficient supporting documents to apply for a Card
- Your Embassy or Consulate will not provide your passport before you obtain your Permanent Residence Card in Canada first
- Your application has been returned to you be the processing centre
- You need to check the status of your Permanent Resident Card application
- You have already submitted your application to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada but now need to travel urgently expedited
- IRCC has requested that you provide additional information
- You have over stayed outside of Canada and you feel your Status may be in Jeopardy
Can I pay you in installments?
Yes, you may pay a minimum deposit of 50% of the amount due to start your case. The balance must be paid in full before the application can be submitted.
Do I pay you when I get my card?
Your fees must be paid in full before your application is submitted to IRCC.
Do you work weekends or evenings?
You may call our office between 8:00am and 6:00pm Eastern Time, or you may come in person between 9:30am and 4:15pm. You may drop your documents at the Toronto office 24 hours a day in our drop box. You may also leave a voicemail at 1-866-760-2623 or send an email 24 hours a day at [email protected] and you will receive a response within one business day. To meet with an immigration practitioner outside of these hours, please contact us during business hours to schedule an appointment at a time convenient to you.
How accurate is your website?
We strive to maintain accurate and up to date information on our website by getting up to the minute news from IRCC and other government agencies. However, you should always confirm information before acting on it to ensure its accuracy.
I had something happen to me that is not posted on this webpage
Great, we really would love to hear from you and what happened. By sending us your experience you are helping others in the future. We post all information that will be valued by future visitors.
I can’t find an answer to my question
Send us an email or enter your question in the box below and we will get back to you within one business day.
What is Permanent Resident Status?
Permanent Residents have been granted the right to live in Canada indefinitely, provided they continue to meet the obligations that are required by this status such as spending a minimum amount of time in Canada. Permanent residents are also entitled to government services such as provincial health insurance as well as a SIN number which enables them to be employed.
History of the PR Card
The Canadian Permanent Resident Card became the legal proof of status document required for Canadian Permanents Residents to re-enter Canada on any commercial carrier (i.e. airplanes, boats, trains or buses) on December 31, 2003. The Permanent Resident Card was created as a proof of status replacement for the IMM 1000 Record of Landing Document previously issued to new permanent residents of Canada upon arrival.
The Canadian Permanent Resident card was introduced in an effort to increase Canadian border security after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in the United States. The US government was concerned that potential terrorists could be using Canada as a means to enter the United States and wanted the Canadian government to equip their permanent residents with an ID card instead of the paper document they had used as proof of status previously. This standard has been applied to Canadian citizens as well as permanent residents, as Canadian citizens now must present their passport, (or at land borders their enhanced driver’s license, which contains similar security features to the PR Card) – to US Customs and Border Protection in order to enter the United States . It is now easier for both the US Customs and Border Patrol and Canadian Border Services Agency to determine who travelers are – and whether or not they could pose a risk – regardless of citizenship.
In addition of being a photo ID card rather than a paper document, the Permanent Resident Card has many security features and is designed to provide Permanent Residents of Canada with a more secure, convenient means of proving their status. The PR Card is designed to protect the privacy of the cardholder as well as being more difficult to tamper and duplicate illegally. Security features include:
- Only non-secure personal information is printed on the card. Personal information that was previously included on the IMM 1000 Record of Landing document, or the Confirmation of Permanent Residence document, is encoded on the card and available only to authorized officials with the appropriate equipment.
- The photograph and signature of the Permanent Resident Card’s holder is laser-engraved in the card.
- Security features aimed at preventing duplication and tampering include ultra-violet images, tactile lettering and micro-text printing.
- The card expires every five years so appearances are kept up to date
Canadian Permanent Residents who do not have a PR Card, are outside of Canada and wish to return via commercial carrier must contact there nearest Canadian visa office to apply for a limited use travel document.
Who is eligible for a PR Card?
In order to be eligible for permanent residence cards, the applicant must:
- Permanent resident status in Canada.
- Be physically present in Canada.
- Not be subject to a removal order.
- Not be a Canadian citizen or registered Indian under the Indian Act.
Who is a Permanent Resident of Canada?
A permanent resident is a foreign national who has immigrated to Canada and plans to live there permanently. To maintain permanent resident status, a permanent resident must live in Canada for at least two years in a five-year period. For more information on permanent resident status, please see What is a Permanent Resident?
How to become a Permanent Resident in Canada
In order to become a permanent resident, you must first immigrate to Canada through either the federal or provincial immigration programs. The first time you enter Canada as an immigrant after your application for permanent resident status has been approved is called “landing” in Canada. Once you have landed in Canada, you will be given your permanent resident card and Record of landing. Those here on temporary status such as temporary residents or work permits are not permanent residents. You may apply for permanent resident status from inside Canada or from outside of Canada depending on the class you are applying under. Please see How to Apply for Permanent Residency in Canada.
What is the cost for a Canadian Permanent Resident Card?
The application fee for a Permane Resident Card is $50 CDN. The cost of the PR card using Immigroup depends on the processing time. Please see the fee grid above.
How do I keep my Permanent Resident status?
Your permanent resident status allows you to live in Canada indefinitely and travel freely outside of the country. However, there is also a time limit on how much time you can spend outside of Canada. To maintain your status as a permanent resident in Canada, you must live in Canada for at least two years within any five-year period. If your status as a permanent resident in Canada is questionable because of the number of days you have been abroad, it could be risky to complete the PR Card application; it may be better to remain within Canada until there is less risk of losing your status.
What is a Permanent Resident Travel Document?
A Permanent resident travel document is a one-time-use replacement for a Permanent Resident Card for Canadian permanent residents overseas who do not have a valid PR Card but who wish to return to Canada. This document is issued at Canadian diplomatic missions abroad and attached to the bearer’s passport.
What is a Record of Landing (IMM 1000)?
This paper document is literally the record of your landing in Canada as an immigrant.
Do I need to renew my PR Card when I move?
No, you do not need to renew your Permanent Resident Card just because you moved. You only have to renew it when it expires.
What happened to the IMM 5455?
The supplemental identification form has been retired. You no longer have to fill out a paper copy in order to apply for a PR Card.
I am a foreign citizen with a Canadian PR Card. I am moving home to work. I need to give up my residency in Canada so I can work at home. How do I do this?
You cannot renounce your PR status. However, you shouldn't have to do this to leave Canada or to work in your home country. Your permanent resident status in Canada will expire automatically after you have lived in your home country.
OVERVIEW ON KEEPING YOUR CANADIAN PR STATUS
Canadian PR Status in Jeopardy FAQs and Troubleshooting
Canadian PR Status in Jeopardy Questions
How Can I Lose My Permanent Resident Status?
You lose your Permanent Resident status once you become a Canadian citizen. You can also voluntarily renounce your status. Otherwise, your status must be revoked. The ways you may involuntarily lose your status include:
- Your case is sent to an adjudicator after an investigation because your failed to meet the Residency Obligation when you renewed your PR Card;
- When applying for a Permanent Resident Travel Document overseas, a visa officer determines you have not met the Residency Obligation;
- You are convicted of a crime and given a departure order.
You cannot normally lose your status solely by not meeting the residency obligation. Normally, you have to file an application for your status to be in jeopardy.
Losing Your Status by Applying for a PR Card from within Canada
The revocation of permanent resident status for someone who is in Canada is a multi-stage process. It will not happen instantly or over night.
- If youapply for a new or replacement PR Card and you have not met the Residency Obligation, you will be sent a Residency Determination.
- If you fail to respond to the Residency Determination OR you respond to the Residency Determination but you do not satisfy IRCC that you have met the Residency Obligation, your case will be sent to an adjudicator (a person whose job it is to decide whether or not you should keep your statu).
- If the adjudicator decides you have not met the Residency Obligation, he or she will likely revoke your Canadian PR status.
- However, you will have a limited time to appeal the decision of the adjudicator. During this time you will still be a permanent resident of Canada.
- If you fail to appeal the decision of the adjudicator within the given amount of time, OR your appeal is rejected, then your status will be revoked and you will be asked to leave Canada.
- When you have to leave Canada will depend on the type of removal order issued to you, a departure order - you will have 30 days - or a deportation order - you will be forced to leave immediately.
Need help? Contact us.
Losing Your Status by Applying for a PRTD Overseas
If you are overseas with an expired PR Card and you apply for a Permanent Resident Travel Document (PRTD) and
- you have either not met the Residency Obligation over the last five years OR
- you have been a permanent resident for less than 5 years and you will not be able to meet the Residency Obligation within 5 years,
your PRTD application will likely be rejected and you may lose your status when you receive a decision on your application.
However, depending on the situation and the information you provided in your PRTD application, you may be allowed to return to Canada to meet the Residency Obligation, or pending further investigation into your status. This is at the discretion of the officer.
One other possibility exists: your PRTD application may be rejected but your status may not be revoked. This puts you in a no-win situation. You will have to apply for a PRTD again to return to Canada, unless you can travel to the US and drive to Canada.
Need help? Contact us.
Denied Entry while trying to Enter Canada
If you travel to Canada without a valid PR Card or Permanent Resident Travel Document, it is possible you could be denied entry because you do not have valid proof of your status. If this is the case, you will have to apply for a Permanent Resident Travel Document (PRTD) before attempting to enter Canada again. If you have not met the Residency Obligation, you may lose your status when applying for the PRTD.
Losing Your Status by Criminal Conviction
If you are convicted of a "serious" crime, you may be issued a removal order. If that happens, you have lost your status. The are many types of crimes that can lead to removal orders, including drinking and driving, theft, assault and possession, among many others. If you are charged with a serious crime and you are a permanent resident, seek legal help immediately.
What is the Residency Obligation?
There are two things all Canadian Permanent Residents must do to maintain status: obey Canadian laws and meet the Residency Obligation.
The Residency Obligation?
In order to maintain your status in Canada, you are required to be physically present in Canada for 730 days (i.e. two calendar years) out of every five years you are a Canadian Permanent Resident. You must demonstrate that you meet this requirement when you renew your PR Card or apply for a Permanent Resident Travel Document abroad.
If you do not meet this obligation, your status may be revoked, though revocation is a long process. If you have been a Permanent Resident of Canada for less than five years but need to replace your PR Card because it was lost or stolen, you will have to prove that you will meet the residency obligation.
Meeting the Permanent Residence Residency Obligation
In order to meet the Residency Obligation, the Government of Canada requires that you be physically present in Canada for 730 days every five years. This means that you aren't just maintaining a residence in the country.
However, in our experience, PR Card holders who merely meet the residence requirement by staying in Canada for less than 1,000 days, are likely to get a Residency Determination request as part of your PR Card renewal. We strongly recommend that you spend at least 1,095 days (3 years) physically present in Canada for every five years you are a Permanent Resident to avoid any hassles.
Exceptions to the Canadian PR Residency Obligation
There are four possible ways you may be allowed to not technically meet the Residency Obligation but still maintain your status. Three of them relate to living and working overseas voluntarily. The final option is an appeal around circumstances beyond your control.
Accompanying a Canadian Spouse/Partner (or Parent) Overseas
If you are a permanent resident, and your spouse/partner is a Canadian citizen (or you are under 19 and your parent is a Canadian citizen), you may be able to maintain your permanent resident status by counting the days you spent outside of Canada with your Canadian spouse/partner (or parent). Your Canadian citizen spouse/partner (or parent) must be able to prove their citizenship to IRCC's satisfaction and you must be able to prove your relationship (through a marriage certificate, statutory declaration of common law union, etc.).
Accompanying a Canadian Permanent Resident Overseas
If you are a permanent resident, your spouse/partner is also a permanent resident and is employed full-time by a Canadian business or the Canadian public service while you are living with them overseas, you can count the days spent abroad with your spouse/partner towards the Residency Obligation.
This also applies if you are under 19 and your parent, who is a permanent resident, works for a Canadian company or a federal or provincial government overseas.
In this circumstance, you will have to prove your relationship but you'll also have to prove that your spouse/partner (or parent) was employed by a Canadian business or the government while you were abroad. The requirements your spouse/partner needs to meet to qualify are the same as the requirements below.
Working for a Canadian Business or the Canadian Government Overseas
If you are working either for a Canadian business or for the public service for either the federal government of Canada or the government of one of the provinces or territories you can count the days spent outside of the country toward the Residency Obligation if the following are true:
- you are a full-time employee of a Canadian business, the federal public service or a provincial or territorial public service AND
- you are assigned overseas full-time AND
- your employment by this business or public service will continue when you return to Canada.
If any of the above is not true, you cannot count the time spent overseas towards the Residency Obligation. So, for example, business trips may or may not count, depending on the circumstance.
Humanitarian and Compassionate Grounds
In certain extenuating circumstances, IRCC may allow you to keep your status even if you failed to meet the Residency Obligation. An example would be: two children are taken overseas by one their parents for long enough to lose their status but the children did not understand they would lose their status. The parent who remained in Canada might be able to petition IRCC to allow the children to keep their status.
I am outside of Canada without a valid PR Card, do I need a Travel Document?
If you are a Canadian Permanent Resident currently outside of Canada without a PR Card or with an expired PR Card you need to apply for a Permanent Resident Travel Document (PRTD) to return to Canada if you are travelling by airline, cruise-ship, train or bus. You can normally only apply for a PRTD at a Visa Application Centre and the processing time is solely determined by the local visa office. There is no way to speed up this application.
- Come to Canada without a PRTD
- Getting a PRTD
How to Avoid Applying for a PRTD
Here are the exceptions:
Living Outside of Canada while Maintaining Your PR Status
If you meet one of the exemptions to the Residency Obligation, you should travel back to Canada to renew your PR Card before it expires. To not have your days outside of Canada counted against the Residency Obligation, the time you've spent outside of Canada as a permanent resident must have been:
- while accompanying your spouse or parent, who is a Canadian citizen; OR
- while accompanying your spouse or parent, who is a Canadian Permanent Resident and is working for a Canadian employer, the federal government of Canada or a government of a Canadian province or territory; OR
- you must be working for a Canadian employer, the federal government of Canada or a government of a Canadian province or territory.
Even if you meet one of these exceptions, you'll still need to apply for a PR Card from within Canada. So if your card has expired and you have not applied for a new one, you will still need to get a Permanent Resident Travel Document.
Travelling to Canada by Private Vehicle
If you are currently in the United States and can drive to Canada (or, if you can travel to the United States and then drive to Canada), then you do not need a PR Card to travel to Canada.
You will, however, need a copy of your Record of Landing or Confirmation of Permanent Residence or some other proof of your status in Canada (such as your expired PR Card plus a copy of your current PR Card application which is in processing). And you can expect to be questioned at length and possibly lectured. (You can also travel to Canada in a private boat or plane without a PR Card if you have that luxury.)
What to bring
In order to successfully travel to and re-enter Canada you will need to bring proof of your status as a Canadian Permanent Resident. Here's what to bring in addition to your passport:
- a copy of your IMM 100 Record of Landing OR your Confirmation of Permanent Residence OR your Verification of Status
- your expired PR Card
- a copy of your application you submitted to renew your PR Card (if applicable) OR a printout from cic.gc.ca showing your PR Card application in process (if applicable)
- a valid ESTA, US visa or Green Card for entry into the United States prior to entry into Canada (if you are not a citizen of the US and are not currently in the US), provided you are driving to Canada, rather than flying by private plane.
If you do not have any of the above Canadian documents, you will have to hope the CBSA officer decides to let you in. Without these documents, it is very likely you will be sent to a Canadian consulate in the US to apply for a PRTD.
Visa-Free Travel To Canada without a Valid PR Card (eTA)
If nationals from your country of origin do not require a visa to Canada, you can try applying for an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA). If you get an eTA, you can come back to Canada.
The problem is, eTAs have existed for years now, and they usually know who is a PR. If your eTA application is rejected you cannot use this option and will have to apply for a PRTD or travel to the US first.
What to Bring
You will need to bring the following if you are flying to Canada:
- your passport (make sure that, if you are a national of a country that is visa-exempt for only newer passports, that you have the right kind)
- your valid eTA.
How to Apply for a PRTD
Apply for a Travel Document Now In order to apply for a Permanent Resident Travel Document (PRTD), you will have to complete the application and submit it to the relevant Visa Application Centre (or, where applicable, Canadian diplomatic mission).
Once you have completed the application, you will have to pay the fee, either online at cic.gc.ca or by the method of the office you are applying through. Then you will have to submit the application according to the rules for the particular country you are currently in.
What is the Residency Determination?
The Residency Determination is a questionnaire sent to you during a PR card renewal application. If your listed days in Canada on your Permanent Resident Card renewal application fail to meet the residency obligation for permanent residents or the information you provide raises suspicions, you will be sent a Residency Determination. You may even receive a Residency Determination questionnaire as a result of a random selection of your application on the part of immigration officials.
Why Did I Get the Residency Determination?
Here are some of the reasons that you may find yourself having to fill out The Residency Determination. Remember, this a two-part form where IRCC (CIC) is seeking more information from you when you apply to renew your PR card. This may be because of the following:
- If your country of citizenship issues more than one passport at a time, this may raise suspicions at IRCC. Essentially, it raises a red flag over the possibility of identity theft, or passport fraud. The immigration authorities will thus need to confirm that you are the legitimate holder of both your passports. If you use different passports to enter Canada at different times, for example, this may raise red flags at IRCC – provided you gave them permission to get your record of entry from CBSA - and cause them to consider sending you a Residency Determination Questionnaire when you renew your PR card.
- If you are a dual citizen, this can cause similar problems with IRCC, especially if you enter Canada on different occasions and use either one of your passports to enter Canada. Try to always use the same passport when entering Canada as a new arrival or as a permanent resident. This is the best way of avoiding having a Residency Determination Questionnaire sent to you.
- If you are sent a residence questionnaire during an application for Canadian citizenship, and you then – for any reason – withdraw your citizenship application, the IRCC may decide your behaviour is suspicious. This can result in your receiving a Residency Determination questionnaire when you next renew your PR card. To avoid this, it is always best to fully answer the residence questionnaire before you abandon your citizenship application. Even so, abandoning a citizenship application – even if it is for valid reasons – may raise red flags at IRCC which can have consequences when you renew your PR Card.
- If you are self-employed and have to travel a lot outside of the country, you should be careful of how many days outside Canada you spend in any given 5 year period. You are allowed a maximum of 1095 days outside of Canada every 5 years (see below). But if you spend over 750 days (almost 2 years) outside of Canada during a 5 year period, you may find yourself having to fill out a Residency Determination questionnaire when you renew your PR card. If you spend even more time outside the country – close to the 1095 day limit – then you will almost certainly receive a Residency Determination questionnaire when you renew. The best way to avoid this is to limit your time travelling outside Canada, if at all possible.
- Some countries are considered by the IRCC to be higher risk countries for things like immigration and/or document fraud, and even terrorism. As a self-employed permanent resident who happens to be a citizen of one of these countries, you may very well find you have to fill out a Residency Determination questionnaire when renewing your PR card. The longer you stay in Canada and the less you travel, the less your chances of this happening.
- If, when you applied for a new PR card, you did NOT consent to let the Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA) share information on your entries to Canada with IRCC, you will be more likely as well to receive a Residency Determination questionnaire form. You should always consent to this sharing of information as it will make your life as a permanent resident (and hopefully later on as a citizen of Canada) much smoother.
- If, when filling out your renewal application, you leave gaps in your personal history, this is a red flag for Canadian immigration authorities. Any missing information will make it very likely that you will receive a Residency Determination questionnaire. Make sure you include every address you have resided at as a permanent resident, even if you have to research and contact people to obtain information you have forgotten. Keep careful records in general as a permanent resident. They may prove helpful or even necessary when you renew.
- If – for any reason at all – you have spent 900 or more days outside of Canada during your 5 years as a permanent resident then you’re begging for the IRCC to send you a Residency Determination questionnaire. Avoid travelling too much outside of Canada unless you absolutely have to. It is best to keep your time spent outside of Canada to some number of days LESS than 750 days every 5 years.
What are the residency requirements for Permanent Residents?
- If you have been a permanent resident of Canada for 5 years or more: you must have been physically present in Canada for a minimum of 730 days.
- If you have been a permanent resident of Canada for less than 5 years: you must show that you will have met the 730 days of physical presence in Canada within 5 years of the date on which you became a permanent resident.
- As of August 1, 2014; IRCC’s definition of a “child” changed to under 19 years of age. It was previously under 22 years of age.
- Keep the above definition of child in mind for the following situations where time spent outside Canada does count towards your residency requirements:
- If you accompanied a Canadian citizen outside of Canada AND that person is your spouse, common-law partner, or parent (you are the child). Documents accepted as evidence in such a case include:
- Marriage licences
- Birth certificates, baptismal certificates
- Passports or Travel documents
- Canadian Income Tax NOA – Notice of Assessment from CRA – from the past 2 years
- School or employment records
- Documents proving Canadian citizenship of person you are accompanying (mandatory)
- Evidence of the residence of the person you are accompanying for 5 years before the application (mandatory).
- If you were employed outside Canada you may count each day employed outside Canada towards your residency requirements if the following applies:
- You are an employee or are under contract to a Canadian business or a Canadian public service of the federal or a provincial or territorial government.
- You are assigned to a full-time position outside of Canada or to an affiliated enterprise outside Canada or to a client of the company or public service outside Canada. Supporting documents include:
- Letter signed by an official of the business or service giving the complete details of your work and position as well as the business itself. It should prove your work abroad is not a make-work project to help you satisfy your residency requirements.
- Articles of incorporation or partnership agreements
- Tax notices and income tax NOA
- Pay statements
- T4 slips.
- If you accompanied a permanent resident outside of Canada AND the person you accompanied was your spouse, common law partner, or parent (you are the child) AND that person was outside of Canada due to: being employed by a Canadian business or public service on a full-time basis. Supporting documents must prove that:
- The person you are accompanying is a permanent resident of Canada
- You are the spouse, common-law partner, or child of that person
- The person you are accompanying meets their own residency obligations.
- You may be granted an exemption from meeting your residency requirements on the basis of humanitarian and compassionate grounds. You must present compelling factors concerning your individual case to the IRCC to enable this judgement to take place.
Explaining your Residence Questionnaire
As explained above, if you are renewing or replacing your PR card and the IRCC decides that you have not have met your residency requirements or may not have been forthcoming on your application, then you will be sent a Residence Questionnaire. It comes in two parts:
- The Absence History Document is form requesting details of your travels outside Canada as well as a section on personal information. You generally have 30 to 60 days to answer this.
- IMM 5511 form: This usually is sent after the Absence History Document, if immigration officials feel they need more information.
Receipt of the IMM 5511 usually means you will then be interviewed by an IRCC official. If the official is not satisfied with the answers you provide in the interview, the next step is an interview with a judge. The judge has the power to revoke your status and order you deported if he or she sees fit, but you have the right to appeal. If your appeal is rejected then you lose your permanent resident status and are subject to a removal order. If you are outside of Canada and are applying for PR card renewal or for a Permanent Resident Travel Document, immigration officials in Canada proceed as follows:
|PR card application||Refer to local IRCC office?||Can residency determination be made based on paper review?||Does applicant need to apply for temporary travel document (PRTD)?||Residency determination overseas||Issue 5 year or 1 year PR card?||Mail to applicant or in person collection?|
|Application complete and residency requirements met||No||Yes, positive determination||Applicant may need to apply for PRTD to return to Canada to pick up PR card||Not applicable||5 year card||In-person collection at IRCC office|
|PR card application requires further investigation||Yes||Yes, positive determination||Applicant may need to apply for PRTD to return to Canada to pick up PR card||Not applicable||5 year card||In-person collection at IRCC office|
|PR card application requires further investigation||Yes||No||Yes||Positive determination||5 year card||In-person collection at IRCC office|
|PR card application requires further investigation||Yes||No||Yes||Negative determination||1 year card as result of appeal||In-person collection at IRCC office|
|PR card application requires further investigation||Yes||No||Yes||Negative determination||No appeal refuse application||Not applicable|
|PR card application requires further investigation||Yes||No||Yes||Applicant does NOT apply for a PRTD but appears for interview in Canada||5 year card if positive
1 year card if negative
|In-person collection at IRCC office|
|PR card application requires further investigation||Yes||No||Yes||Applicant does NOT apply for PRTD nor appears in Canada within 180 days||Deem application abandoned||Not applicable|
What is Secondary Review?
"Secondary Review" is when your PR Card renewal application is sent from the main processing office in Sydney, Nova Scotia to the local IRCC office with jurisdiction for your area, to investigate whether or not you've met the requirements to maintain your permanent resident status in Canada. You may be informed about secondary review by email, but normally, you'll find out about it only if you check your status online or call IRCC to check your application status.
How long Does Secondary Review Take of a PR Card Application take?
There is no fixed timeline for secondary review; depending upon your application, how many days you spent in Canada and what documentation you provided, it could take a couple of months to close to a year or more. There is no way to speed up the process and there is no way to find out how long your particular application will take. Basically, you just have to wait. There is also a chance you will be sent the Residency Determination as part of this process.
What Can I Do if My PR Card Application Goes to Secondary Review?
Well, the best thing you can do is to wait until you have at least 1,095 days in Canada within the last 5 years before you renew your PR Card. If you do not, and IRCC has reason to believe you when you state that on your application, your application should be processed normally (45 days, as of November 2016). But once your application goes to Secondary Review, there's not much you can do except wait. If you must travel during this period, you will have to apply for a Permanent Resident Travel Document (PRTD) if you want to re-enter Canada by commercial vehicle (plane, train, bus, ship). (You do not need a PR Card to re-enter Canada by car.) Applying for a PRTD is a risk if you haven't met the Residency Obligation, i.e if you've spent less than 730 days in Canada within the last 5 years. If you apply for a PRTD under those circumstances, you could lose your status immediately. So only travel outside of Canada during Secondary Review if you
- Met the Residency Obligation (i.e. have spent more than 730 days in Canada within the last 5 years and can prove it)
- Can re-enter Canada by car.
What's the Worst that Can Happen if my PR Card Application is sent to Secondary Review?
The worst that can happen is that your application is sent to an adjudicator who makes a decision on your PR Status. If that happens, and the adjudicator rules against you, you do have the right to appeal. Need help? Call us at 1-866-760-2623
How do I get my Notice of Assessment to prove I was in Canada?
A Notice of Assessment (NOA) is a statement sent to you annually by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) once your tax return has been processed. Your NOA details the following:
- what income taxes you owe the government, and
- what income taxes you have already paid, and
- what tax credits you have been granted, and
- whether or not you are a due a refund from the government of Canada.
It is essentially an annual snapshot of your balance, as a taxpayer, with the CRA. It is also an important supporting document which you need to help prove your status as a permanent resident in Canada. It is always a good idea to keep on file your NOAs from each of the last 5 years, as you may need to send a copy to IRCC when you apply for a PR card or in general when you have to prove your PR status. If, however, you do not have your latest NOAs on file, then you will need to request a copy from the Canada Revenue Agency, or CRA. Here’s how to do it.
Request your Notice of Assessment Online
The quickest way is to view your NOA online and print it out. To do this, you must take the following steps: Set up a My Account at the Canada Revenue Agency, or CRA. There are three ways to do this:
- Use a Canadian financial services partner from the following list to sign in to CRA and create your My Account. Your information will not be shared between your financial institution and the CRA. Your so-called “Sign-in Partner” (the financial firm you deal with online – see list below) will not even know what Canadian government agency you are dealing with. The Sign-in Partner can be one of the following:
- BMO Financial Group
- CHOICE REWARDS Master Card
- Desjardins Group
- Royal Bank of Canada
- TD Bank Group
- Register directly with the CRA to get your User ID & Password. For more information on both options, go here.
- Use the Mobile App MyCRA. Go here for more information.
Encryption and the CRA
Modern encryption uses mathematical formulas to scramble your information and then unscramble it once it has been safely transmitted. If you use CRA online – to view and print out your NOA, for example – then you must ensure your web browser has Transport Layer Security, or TLS encryption. Unless you want the World Wide Web to know your tax details. Here’s how to make sure your private tax information remains private: Currently, your web browser will need TLS 1.0 to access CRA secure services. That means you need TLS 1.0 to set up your account and view and print out your NOA. The CRA recommends you upgrade to TLS 1.2 as soon as possible as this is the next level of encryption you will need within the next 2 years in order to securely file taxes or view your NOA online.
- Step 1: determine your computer’s Operating System:
- Windows: Right-click My Computer > Select Properties > Look for “Windows”
- Mac: Select About This Mac from Apple menu > Look directly below “OS X” for the version your computer is using
- Apple iOS: select Setting > General > About > Look for Version
- Android: select Settings > Security > About > Version
- Chrome OS: type the following in your Omnibox: about: version
- Firefox OS: select Settings > Device Information > Look for Version
- Step 2: determine the Web Browser your computer is using:
- Internet Explorer: select Help in menu bar > About Internet Explorer > Look below the words Internet Explorer in the pop up box to see the version number
- Safari: select Safari from the menu at top of screen > in drop down menu select About Safari > a pop-up box will appear with the version number
- Chrome: select wrench icon or menu and click About Google Chrome or first click on Help and then About Google Chrome
- Firefox: select Menu button > Help > About Firefox > look below Firefox name in the pop-up box for the version number
- Edge: Don’t use Edge, as Edge currently doesn’t support TLS
- Step 3: determine if you need to upgrade to TLS 1.2
- Android 2.3 (or higher) Operating System: upgrade your browser to Firefox 24 or higher to support TLS 1.2
- Android 4 (or higher) Operating System: the following browsers all support TLS 1.2: Chrome 30 (or higher); Firefox 24 (or higher); Opera Mobile (Webkit/Blink) version 17
- Firefox OS Operating System: upgrade your browser to Firefox 24 (or higher) to support TLS 1.2
- iOS 6 or higher Operating System: upgrade your browser to Chrome 30 or Safari 6 or higher to support TLS 1.2
- Linux Operating System: the following browsers all support TLS 1.2: Chrome 30 (or higher); Firefox 24 (or higher); Opera Mobile (Webkit/Blink) version 17
- Mac OS X 10.6 Operating System: upgrade your browser to Firefox 24 (or higher) to support TLS 1.2
- Mac OS X 10.7 Operating System: the following browsers all support TLS 1.2: Chrome 30 (or higher); Firefox 24 (or higher); Opera Mobile (Webkit/Blink) version 17
- Mac OS X 10.9 (or higher) Operating System: the following browsers all support TLS 1.2: Chrome 30 (or higher); Safari 7 (or higher); Firefox 24 (or higher); Opera Mobile (Webkit/Blink) version 17
- Windows 7 (or higher) Operating System: the following browsers all support TLS 1.2: Chrome 30 (or higher); Firefox 24 (or higher); Internet Explorer 8 (or higher)
- Windows Vista Operating System: the following browsers support TLS 1.2: Chrome 30 (or higher); Firefox 24 (or higher)
- Windows XP with service pack 3 (or higher) Operating System: the only remaining browser that will support TLS 1.2 is: Firefox 24 (or higher)
- Step 4: enable Transport Layer Security (TLS):
- Internet Explorer:
- Select Tools from browser menu bar
- Select Internet Options
- Select Advanced Tab
- Scroll down to Security
- Check à Use TLS 1.2
- Select OK
- Close browser for change to settings to take effect.
- Firefox: uses TLS encryption by default so there are NO settings to enable
- Safari (Windows or Mac): uses TLS encryption by default, so there are NO settings to enable
- Chrome: uses TLS encryption by default, so there are NO settings to enable
- Edge:: don't use Edge!
- Internet Explorer:
That should ensure your computer has safe connections on the net, not only for using CRA’s secure services, but for doing any sort of financial and other transactions that could compromise your personal information. A good thing to know. Finally, remember that your Notice of Assessment, NOA, is a valuable supporting document to prove your PR status in Canada. File and save all your NOAs if possible.
Get Your Notice of Assessment by phone
Call the number below at the CRA to request what is called an income and deduction printout. This will show all the information given on your latest NOA or Notice of Re-Assessment.
Before calling the toll-free number at CRA, you must have on hand the following information:
- Your Social Insurance Number or Business Number;
- Your Name or Business Name;
- Your complete address or business address;
- Your date of birth (for individual accounts only);
- Details from your account, or most recently assessed tax return, or NOA;
- For business accounts, details of your business account or most recently assessed business tax return.