DUI and Canada

Can you go to Canada if you get convicted of a DUI

Since Washington State borders Canada a lot of Washington State residents travel there fairly often, for both pleasure and work. But what a lot of people may not know is a DUI can prevent you from entering Canada. In fact, many convictions in the U.S. including those for Reckless Driving, Reckless Endangerment, and Negligent Driving 1 can make a person inadmissible to Canada.  Inadmissibility is determined by comparing the elements of the crime in the U.S. with the elements of Canadian criminal offenses.

Many DUI Attorneys in Seattle are not aware of the hidden dangers and pitfalls of a reduced DUI charge in Washington State.  It is important to contact a DUI Attorney that understands all the consequences both immediate and collateral that can affect you after a DUI arrest.

What are the ways to gain admittance to Canada following a DUI conviction

Gaining admittance to Canada after a DUI arrest can be a tricky thing.  It can take lots of time and patience, but it can be done. There are essentially three ways to gain admittance after being convicted of a DUI.

1. If your DUI sentence is less than 5 years old

If the completion of your DUI sentence is less than 5 years old, you can apply for a temporary resident permit. Last time I checked the cost is around $200. However, this process can take months. A DUI Lawyer will be able to help you through this process.

2. If your DUI sentence is more than 5 years old

If your completed DUI sentence is more than 5 years ago, you can apply for approval of rehabilitation. The nonrefundable fee is $200 or $1000 (depending on the severity of the crime). You will need to provide a “police certificate” of criminal history, if any, from every State, which you have lived more than six months since age 18. Also, you will have to provide dates, home, and work addresses for each state you lived in since age 18. Processing time can take a year or more.

3. If your DUI sentence is more than 10 years old

If you had one DUI completed over 10 years ago, you can apply for approval of rehabilitation right at the border. You arrive at the border with your application completed in hand. If approved, the past DUI will no longer be an issue, and you can come and go as you please.

This is a tricky area of the law especially with DUI charges, DUI reductions, and Washington State being so close to Canada. Below are some links for additional information. Remember if you have any questions feel free to call my office to speak with an experienced DUI Attorney.

Canada International FAQs

You can also call the immigration section of the Canadian Consulate at 206-443-1372.

If you have been arrested for a DUI in Washington State.  It is important that you hire a Seattle DUI Lawyer that understands all the legal consequences you face.  Contact my office for a free 60-minute consultation that is completely confidential.  Our main office is located in downtown Seattle at the corner of 7th and Olive, however, we also have satellite offices in Bothell, Bellevue, and Factoria if it’s more convenient to meet there.