How Long Should I Allow for PR Card Processing Time?
Whether you’ve applied for your first PR (Permanent Resident) card, or are simply renewing your old one, it’s important to allow enough processing time – especially if you’re planning on making a trip outside Canada soon. Below, we’ve outlined a few tips regarding PR card processing time, and how far in advance you need to apply.
Check the Regularly Updated Processing Times
The easiest way to check the current PR card processing time is by visiting the Government of Canada website. These processing times are subject to change, but are updated every week.
Currently, for new permanent residents the wait is 18 calendar days (for those who have provided their mailing address in Canada). Renewal times typically take longer, and those who apply for PR card renewal will be waiting for 85 calendar days.
Have you been waiting longer than the times shown? According to the CIC: “If you live inside Canada and it has been longer than the time shown above since you applied, please contact the Call Centre. Call Centre agents cannot speed up the process of your application or make decisions on your case.”
Err on the Side of Caution
The CIC website also states that the processing times in the link above will only show you the time it took to either approve or reject 80 per cent of applications “some time in the past”. Processing times are only displayed in order to give you a general idea of how long the process may take for you, and your PR card processing time could be longer or shorter. Therefore, we urge you to err on the side of caution when applying for your PR card.
Applying for Urgent Processing
If it is your intention to travel outside Canada and need your PR card urgently, there is an option to apply for urgent processing. Only do this if it looks like your PR card will not be issued by the time you need to leave the country.
In order to qualify for urgent processing, the following must apply:
- You intend to travel within the next three months.
- You will be returning to the country via a commercial vehicle, such as a plane, bus or boat.
However, there are still no guarantees you will receive your card on time. The CIC says that, “even if these conditions apply to you, we may not be able to process your request urgently or get your card to you before you leave Canada.”
Need Help Applying for a Permanent Resident Card?
Do you need further assistance applying for, or renewing your Permanent Resident Card? Get in touch with our immigration experts today by filling out a free assessment and we will quickly get back to you to discuss the next steps!
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
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