Being Denied Entry to the United States for a DUI


Having a criminal record is one of the most common reasons that someone would be denied entry to the United States. This means that when a traveler reaches a US customs checkpoint either in an airport or at the border, their criminal record will sometimes render then inadmissible to the country and they will have to return home right away.

Canada is the same, where a criminal record will render you inadmissible to the country. If you try to enter Canada with a DUI, you will almost certainly be denied entry.

Denied Entry to the U.S. Due to a DUI

If you try to enter the United States with a DUI, you may be denied entry depending on the DUI charge and the circumstances surrounding it. However, even if you have a DUI conviction you can still enter the United States by way of a United States waiver of inadmissibility, if you are approved for one.

Obtaining a United States Waiver of Inadmissibility

The laws that dictate what type of criminal records will cause you to be denied entry to the United States are very complicated and sometimes it can be difficult to determine if your own legal situation will cause you to be denied entry.

If you speak with a licensed immigration lawyer well before your travel, they can help you determine if you will be inadmissible and if there are steps that you need to take. One of these steps is applying for a United States waiver, which is a temporary document that will allow you into the country. However, these applications need to be made well in advance of your travel because they can take several months to process.

Have You Been Denied Entry to the United States for a DUI?

Do you want to visit the United States, but have a DUI? All of Niren & Associates’ cases are handled by independent, licensed and award winning Canadian and U.S. lawyers who adhere to the highest standards of client service. If you have been denied entry to the U.S. for DUI, we may be able to help. Contact us to book a consultation.

Michael Niren

About Michael Niren

Michael is a graduate of Osgoode Hall Law School in Toronto. He is a member of the Law Society of Upper Canada, the Canadian Bar Association’s Citizenship and Immigration Section and the Associate Member of the American Bar Association. Read more

2 thoughts on “Being Denied Entry to the United States for a DUI

  1. Yvette

    Hi, I live in The Bahamas and my daughter was in the United States for two months attending a six months course without a Visa and came home for a weekend. When she tried going back she was questioned and she admitted that she had smoked marijuana and also had a case before the courts but the case was dropped. They said that she was inadmissilbe under sections 212(a) 2)A) (i) (II) Controlled subtance Violation and 212(a) (7) (B) (i) (II) Nonimmigrant without a nonimmigrant visa. This happened in October 2013 and now we we want to know how does she go about getting into the US. We was going to have a American come and marry her. Now cause she just want to attend school there can we apply for a student visa> Please help.

    1. Michael Niren Post author

      Hello Yvette

      Thank you for your post. Your daughter would likely need a waiver for admission to the US. If she intends to be Petitioned for US Permanent residence as a spouse, her admission could cause issues even if she was not convicted. Her case requires professional assistance.

      Michael Niren


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