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Entering Canada with an impaired driving conviction

In this article, you will find:

  • An overview of why individuals who have been convicted of impaired driving may not be allowed to enter Canada.
  • Information on how individuals who have been convicted of impaired driving can overcome their inadmissibility to Canada.

Citizens of many countries may be surprised to discover that if you have been convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI), you can be found criminally inadmissible to Canada. If you are found criminally inadmissible to Canada, you will not be allowed to enter the country.

This comes as a surprise to many because in most countries, impaired driving is seen as a minor or misdemeanor offence. In Canada however, driving while impaired is seen as a more serious crime and is likely to cause a person who has been convicted of such offense to be denied entry into Canada. This is due to Canadian law which provides that a person can be deemed criminally inadmissible to Canada if they have committed a crime outside of Canada that, if committed in Canada, would constitute a serious crime.

It is also important to note that Canada will refuse entry to individuals who have been convicted of any sort of impaired driving charge, not just DUIs. Examples of impaired driving offenses include:

  • Driving While Impaired (DWI).
  • Driving While Intoxicated (DWI).
  • Operating Under the Influence (OUI).
  • Wet and Reckless (W&R).
  • Reckless Driving.
  • Driving without Due Care and Attention.

There are certain legal avenues that can allow a person to enter Canada despite being having been convicted of an impaired driving offense.

Article by Colin Singer