Minor criminality can be a major headache

Immigration law makes it more difficult for business trips into Canada for employees with past convictions, even for small offences
By Sergio Karas
|Canadian Employment Law Today|Last Updated: 03/11/2009

Since the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA) came into force in 2002, a “foreign national” applicant with a criminal record, even a minor one, can be denied entry to Canada. For example, a business person who was convicted in the United States, sometime in the past, of driving under the influence of alcohol and pled guilty, paid a small fine and put the matter behind her, could, until recently, easily obtain a permit at the Canadian Port of Entry, meet customers and drive back after her work was done. In fact, sometimes the minor offence was not even noticeable at the border. However, with the advent of the IRPA, it is no longer so easy for an applicant with a conviction to enter Canada.