The Most Common Reasons Denied Entry to Canada

By Michael Niren January 14, 2016 4 min. read
Canada Denied Entry

Canada accepts thousands of immigrants per year. The Canadian government also denies many applications. Why would it reject people? There are a number of reasons why immigration officials accept one person’s application and not another. Read on to learn a list of the most common reasons people are denied entry into Canada.

Security Reasons

Canada takes its security very seriously. As such, it will not allow anyone into the country who could jeopardize the safety of its citizens.

People who are suspected or have committed espionage, attempted to overthrow the government or engaged in acts of violence or terrorism will be denied entry into Canada. Even if you’re part of an organization which participates in these activities but haven’t taken part in them yourself, you’ll still be forbidden to come to Canada.

Human or International Rights Violations

The True North has a very strong record in the field of human and international rights. It will not harbor those who are suspected or have committed human or international rights violations.

These violations include (but aren’t limited to) war crimes and crimes against humanity. The Statute of the International Criminal Court defines war crimes as “serious violations of the laws and customs applicable in international armed conflict” and “serious violations of the laws and customs applicable in an armed conflict not of an international character.” Crimes against humanity, as defined by the International Criminal Court, are acts knowingly committed as part of a widespread or systemic attack against any part of the civilian population. They include (but aren’t limited to) murder, enslavement, deportation and torture. Even if you didn’t participate in these actions but were a senior official in a government which did, immigration officials would deny your entry into Canada.

Criminal Activity

Canada is a country with a strong rule of law. It doesn’t tolerate criminal activity.

If you’ve committed a crime that would be punishable by the maximum sentence of at least ten years, even if that crime took place outside of Canada, you won’t be able to come into this country. Even if you’ve been convicted of an offense such as driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, your entry will be denied.

Let’s say you’re a member of a crime syndicate, such as the Russian mafia. You might never have committed a criminal offense in your entire life, but your organization’s participation in activities such as money laundering and human trafficking are enough to keep you out of Canada.

Health Problems

Security, human rights violations and criminal offenses aren’t the only reasons immigration officials won’t let you into Canada. Your health could be a bar to your entry.

If your health condition would endanger public health or pose a threat to public safety, you won’t be allowed into Canada. Even if your condition isn’t serious enough to put others at risk, it could put a strain on the health or social services system. And that, too, can also prevent you from coming to this country.

Financial Grounds

Canada was built by hard-working immigrants. They laboured to create a better life for themselves and their families.

If you’re not willing to work or you don’t have the means to support yourself and your family, immigration officials will refuse your application to enter Canada.

Lying on Your Application

Honesty is a virtue. And it’s one you should exercise when filling out your application for a visa to Canada.

Did you claim you were a refugee when you’re really not? Have you withheld important information (such as details about a conviction or support for a terrorist group)? Those are two examples of misrepresentation that will bar you from Canada.

Noncompliance with Immigration Laws

The Immigration and Refugee Protection Act governs immigration in Canada. Those who come to Canada are expected to abide by the law. Otherwise, the Canadian government can revoke their legal status.

What are some examples of noncompliance? Temporary visitors overstay their visa or try to work or study without the right visa. Permanent residents don’t live in Canada for long enough. People who have been deported from Canada attempt to re-enter the country without proper authorization.

An Inadmissible Family Member

You might meet all of the qualifications to immigrate to Canada. However, if you’re immigrating as a family and even a single member isn’t admissible, you won’t be able to get in.

Although it doesn’t seem fair to punish a whole family for one person’s actions or health condition, Canada cannot afford a risk to the health and safety of its citizens.

VisaPlace: Your Canadian Immigration Law Experts

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