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Leaving Canada as permanent resident but w/o card 

phildobya
phildobya
Posts: 1


Posted On: 1/13/2018
phildobya
phildobya
Posts: 1
Hi there

My common-law spouse and I have applied for permanent residence after being rejected the first time due to some missing documents. We are confident we will be accepted any day now based on similar applications that our friends have received. Our current working visas have expired so we are on "implied status".

The problem is that we don't think that we will get our permanent residence cards in time before we have to travel. I am going to Peru for work in the middle of February, and my spouse is going to New Zealand for a wedding at the same time.

From what we've been told, it will take a minimum of 2-3 weeks from when we get our "your application is approved, please send in your photos" email to when we get the piece of paper with which we can "land" as permanent residents. From there - it would take 2 months to get our permanent residence cards, which clearly will be well past February.

I've been told that if I land as a permanent resident before I leave in February, then I can take all that evidence with me and enter via the land border at Buffalo on the way home (I won't be allowed on the plane from Lima without a PR card or an eTA, and I won't have an eTA once my PR goes through). Does this sound possible? I have heard that the main risk is that commercial carriers won't let you on the plane/ship without your PR card or eTA, so I'm thinking that flying to Buffalo and taking the bus would get me to the Canadian border, where they can verify my status.

For my spouse, it seems to make sense to only "land" as a permanent resident when she returns from New Zealand. Right?

Any advice appreciated since it's a complicated situation!
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Moderator
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 2728


Posted On: 1/23/2018
Moderator
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 2728
Hello,

Thank you for sharing your situation and question with us.

We can appreciate that you would be interested in finding out what your options are.

You can find some information on the CIC website in the I am outside of Canada and do not have a PR card. How can I return to Canada? section.

Here is an excerpt,

I need to leave Canada and I do not have a permanent resident card. Can I later return to Canada without a PR card?

Canada’s entry requirements are changing

Permanent residents (PR) of Canada must carry and present their valid PR card or permanent resident travel document (PRTD) when boarding a flight to Canada, or travelling to Canada on any other commercial carrier. If you do not carry your PR card or PRTD, you may not be able to board your flight, train, bus or boat to Canada.

It is your responsibility to ensure that your PR card is still valid when you return from travel outside Canada, and to apply for a new PR card when your current card expires.

Returning by Private vehicle

There are other documents you can use to enter the country.

When you return to Canada, apply for a PR card if you plan to travel outside Canada again.

Some examples of private vehicles include, but are not limited to: a car, truck, motorcycle, or recreational vehicle that you own, borrow, or rent, and that is not available for public use.

Returning by commercial vehicle: airplane, bus, train, or boat

You must apply for a Permanent Resident Travel Document (PRTD). valid for one entry. Otherwise you may not be able to travel to Canada.

You can apply to replace your PR card when you return to Canada.


You may want to contact the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Call Centre directly for some information specific to you and your spouse's situation.

I hope this information is helpful. Please let us know if you have further questions and if there is any follow up to your question/situation.

=====
Anna
Settlement.Org Content and Information/Referral Specialist, CIRS
Settlement.Org
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