Want to immigrate to Canada on a Permanent Basis?
To immigrate to Canada and become a Canadian Permanent Resident, you will need to apply under one of the programs and then if approved you will be issued a Canadian permanent resident visa. There are various programs under which you may qualify for Canadian immigration, but it’s important to identify the best one for your particular situation. Take our Free Assessment and we will help you to narrow down your choices for immigration to Canada. A permanent resident is someone who has been given permanent resident status by immigrating to Canada, but is not a Canadian citizen. Permanent residents are citizens of other countries.
The permanent resident card
If you travel outside Canada, the PR card is your proof that you are a permanent resident of Canada. If you leave Canada, you will need this card to re-enter the country on a commercial vehicle, like an airplane, boat, train or bus.
Canadian permanent residents need to show their permanent resident card when travelling to Canada in order to prove their permanent resident status. Permanent residents who do not have a PR card, or who are not carrying their PR card when travelling outside the country, will need to obtain a permanent resident travel document before returning to Canada by air mode in order to comply with eTA requirements.
If your PR card expires, it does not mean you have lost permanent resident status.
What permanent residents can do
As a permanent resident, you have the right to:
- get most social benefits that Canadian citizens receive, including health care coverage,
- live, work or study anywhere in Canada,
- apply for Canadian citizenship,
- protection under Canadian law and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
You must pay taxes and respect all Canadian laws at the federal, provincial and municipal levels.
What permanent residents cannot do
You are not allowed to:
- vote or run for political office,
- hold some jobs that need a high-level security clearance.
Time spent living in Canada
When you are a permanent resident, you can live outside of Canada, but must live in Canada for at least two years in a five-year period. If you live outside of Canada for longer, you may lose your permanent resident status.
Losing your permanent resident status
Losing your permanent resident status does not happen automatically. You cannot lose your permanent resident status simply by living outside of Canada long enough that you don’t meet the residency requirement. Unless you have gone through an official process, you have not lost or given up your permanent resident status, even though you may not be eligible to return to Canada as a permanent resident.
You may lose your permanent resident status if:
- an adjudicator determines that you are no longer a permanent resident following an inquiry; or
- a visa officer determines you do not meet the required residency when you apply for a permanent resident travel document or temporary resident travel document.
You may lose your permanent resident status in one of the ways described above if:
- you do not live in Canada for two out of five years;
- you are convicted of a serious crime and told to leave Canada; or
- you become a Canadian citizen.