What is a Record Suspension?

What is a Record Suspension?

What is a Record Suspension?

A record suspension, formerly known as a pardon, allows individuals convicted of a criminal offense to have their criminal record kept separate and apart from other criminal records. This means that their criminal record will not show up on standard record checks, making it easier for them to access employment, and educational opportunities, and reintegrate into society.

The Parole Board of Canada (PBC) is responsible for ordering, refusing to order, and revoking record suspensions for convictions under federal acts or regulations of Canada. However, it’s important to note that a record suspension does not erase a convicted offense but sets it aside. It also does not guarantee entry or visa privileges to another country.

Limits of a record suspension:

There are limits to a record suspension, such as being flagged in CPIC for former sexual offenders, which is done to ensure that individuals convicted of sexual offenses are identified if they apply to work or volunteer with vulnerable groups.

A record suspension can be revoked or cease to have effect if the individual is convicted of a new indictable offense, found to no longer be of good conduct, found to have made a false or misleading statement, or found to have been ineligible for a record suspension at the time it was ordered. If a record suspension is revoked or ceases to have effect, the record of the offense(s) is added back into the CPIC database.

Who is eligible and the process:

Who is Eligible:
You were convicted of an offense in Canada under a federal act or regulation of Canada as an adult; and/or
You were convicted of a crime in another country and were transferred to Canada while serving that sentence under the Transfer of Offenders Act or International Transfer of Offenders Act.

Who is NOT Eligible:
You have only received an absolute or conditional discharge; ortroops of rcmps representing record suspension
You were only convicted in a youth court or youth justice court.

Important Notes:
A record suspension will not affect your driving or weapons prohibition orders.
The Parole Board of Canada has no jurisdiction over youth offenses recorded before 1996 that are not listed on your criminal record, even if you were subsequently convicted as an adult. You must contact the court and police agency directly to address those records.

Application Process:
You must have completed all of your sentences, including fines, imprisonment, probation, etc.
You must have completed the appropriate waiting period, which varies depending on the date of your first offense and the type of conviction (summary or indictable). The waiting period starts after you have completed all of your sentences.

Waiting Periods:
Before June 29, 2010: 5 years for indictable offenses, 3 years for offenses punishable on summary conviction.
Between June 29, 2010, and March 12, 2012: 10 years for serious personal injury offenses or offenses resulting in a prison term of 2 years or more; 5 years for other indictable offenses; 3 years for summary conviction offenses.
On or after March 13, 2012: 10 years for offenses prosecuted by indictment, 5 years for offenses punishable on summary conviction.

You may not be eligible for a record suspension if your first offense was committed on or after March 13, 2012, and you have been convicted to a prison term of 2 years or more for more than three indictable offenses; or
You were convicted of an offense found in Schedule I of the Criminal Records Act and do not meet the exception criteria.

It’s important to consult with the Parole Board of Canada or a legal professional for specific guidance on your eligibility and the application process.

To apply for a record suspension

1. Application Fee: As of January 1, 2022, the application fee for a record suspension is $50.00.credit card for record suspension application

2. Eligibility and Wait Times: Before applying, ensure you meet the eligibility criteria and understand the waiting period based on the date of your first offense and the type of conviction.

3. Application Process: You can apply directly to the Parole Board of Canada. You do not need a lawyer or third-party service provider. Ensure you answer all questions truthfully and completely.

4. Additional Fees: You are responsible for any additional fees required as part of your application, such as fingerprints, copies of your criminal record, court documents, and police checks.

5. Processing Time: The processing time for a record suspension application can vary. It’s advisable to submit your application well in advance of any deadlines or planned travel

6. Travel Considerations: A record suspension does not guarantee entry or visa privileges to another country. Before traveling, contact the authorities of the country you wish to visit to find out their entry requirements.

7. No Preferential Treatment: The Parole Board of Canada does not give preferential treatment to any application. All applications are treated the same.

It’s important to note that hiding information or making false statements in your application could cause your application to be returned or your record suspension to be revoked. It’s advisable to seek guidance from the Parole Board of Canada or a legal professional if you have any questions about the application process.



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