How to deal with a permanent resident card that has expired outside of Canada
There is a specific process for permanent residents who need to renew their permanent resident card in Canada to do so. However, one of the requirements for renewing your permanent resident card is that you are in Canada when you do so. Normally, a permanent resident needs a valid permanent resident card to return to Canada, so what can someone do when their permanent resident card expires outside of Canada?
While permanent residents of Canada should try their best to renew their permanent resident card well before the expiry date, sometimes this just isn’t possible and they have to remain out of the country. Luckily, there is a procedure for people whose card has expired outside of Canada, or people who have lost their documentation that otherwise proves their status. They simply need to apply for a travel document.
How to apply for a travel document
1. Obtain an Application for a Travel Document (Permanent Resident Abroad).
2. Fill out the application form completely. If you do not understand something, make sure you ask for help from a licensed immigration representative so that you don’t have a problem with the processing of your application.
3. Review the document checklist that accompanies the application form. This will let you know what you need to provide with your application package. For example, you will need documentation or copies of documentation that will prove who you are and that you are a permanent resident. You also need to demonstrate that you have met the residency obligation. The supporting documents you need to provide can differ depending on your reason for being abroad.
4. Have you application and supporting documentation reviewed by a licensed and qualified immigration representative to be sure everything is ready for processing and that you did not make any mistakes.
5. Submit your application package to the appropriate Canadian visa office.
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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