How to Obtain a Criminal Record Suspension, formerly called Request for Pardon
Having a criminal record can sometimes be very cumbersome. Whether you are trying to find a job, get a home, buy insurance, or enter certain countries, including our neighboring country, the United States, this situation may cause some difficulties.
Sometimes it is an offense committed several years ago for which the person has already paid for his or her gesture and definitely wants to move on.
Fortunately, it is possible to remedy the situation by applying for a criminal record suspension or purge from the Parole Board of Canada. To do so, a multi-stage application, meeting certain conditions, must be completed before being sent as an official request to the Commission. Although it is a process that can be done by a single person, people often get lost and denied their application because it does not meet certain criteria or is incomplete.
Before proceeding for the application, the entire sentence of the offense must have been served. Once the sentence has been served, there must be a five-year time limit for summary offenses (e.g. nudity in public places, disturbance of peace, etc.) and 10 years for indictments (criminal negligence causing death, Etc.) before sending the application. In order to ascertain the type of offense and the penalty, it is always possible to do a pre-trial verification at the Courthouse in your area before starting the application.
Certain offenses, including sexual offenses involving children or offenses for which there have been more than three indictments and for which these charges have been punished by a term of imprisonment of 2 years or more, will automatically render ineligible a request for suspension of the record. It is therefore very important to carry out the verification of all offenses before starting the process.
Finally, when you are ready to start your application for suspension of the criminal record, you must begin with fingerprinting that will confirm your criminal record as well as the list of offenses. Following the receipt of fingerprints, it will be necessary to fill out various forms that will allow you to complete your final request. The process usually takes between 6 to 12 months.
Do not hesitate to contact us to learn more about our services and rates. We also invite you to read our article (to be translated) on the request for lifting of the ban on entry into the United States (Waiver).
Text prepared by Me Julie Paradis