FAQ

Why do I need a pardon?

A Canadian Pardon/Record Suspension will seal your criminal record from public domain forever. This means that after you have been Pardoned, any search of your name on the national criminal database will produce the result “No Criminal Record on File”.

Is Government Canada really going to stop the Pardon Process?

No. Recently, a small number of unscrupulous individuals have attempted to take advantage of legislative changes in order to pressure potential applicants for a fee. Although it’s true that some individuals with serious records, and some sexual offences against minors are no longer eligible for a Pardon, the vast majority of Canadians with a criminal record can still apply. Please ensure that you carefully investigate the salesperson or company who suggests a rapidly approaching deadline to apply. At Freedom Canada we believe in integrity first and foremost.

Why do I need a waiver?

It is illegal to attempt entry into the United States with a criminal record.

If you attempt to enter the U.S. with a criminal record, Customs and Border Control has the authority to deny you access — or worse. You may also be detained or have property in your possession seized. Regardless of how long ago your charge(s), or how minor you feel they are, you are taking a substantial risk every time you attempt to enter the U.S. with a criminal record.
Examples of convictions which make you ineligible to legally enter the U.S. include: theft, break & enter, possession of narcotics, trafficking of narcotics, fraud, sexual assaults, any sexual offence, any violent offence, any offence involving weapons, any indictable offence, any record with more than one conviction, and some conditional and absolute discharges.

If I have a pardon, do I still need a Waiver?

Note that obtaining a Pardon does not guarantee your travel freedom to the United States. Homeland Security does not recognize a Canadian Pardon as rehabilitation. In order to clear your criminal record in Canada and ensure your travel freedom to the U.S., it is recommended that you begin an application for both a Pardon and Waiver. Apply now…

Can You Get a Passport with a Criminal Record?

In most cases yes you can. Having a criminal record does not absolutely prevent you from obtaining a passport. However, there are circumstances that can prevent you from getting a passport, including if you have been charged with an indictable offence, if you are currently in prison or if you are on parole. If the judge who issued your sentence placed a travel restriction under your name, you will likely be denied a Passport.

It is also important to note that having a valid Canadian Passport does not mean you will be given entry to any particular country due to the restrictions that country may have on travelers with a criminal record.