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Frequently Asked Questions on Permanent Residents outside Canada

  1. Who is considered a permanent resident (PR) of Canada?
  2. Can I travel to Canada with an expired PR Card?
  3. Can I travel to Canada with a photocopy of my PR Card?
  4. Can I re-enter Canada using a Record of Landing (IMM 1000)/Confirmation of Permanent Residence (COPR-IMM 5292)/Returning Resident Permit?
  5. How do I keep my PR status?
  6. How do I calculate my number of days present in Canada?
  7. I have been a permanent resident (PR) for less than five years. How will my five-year period be calculated?
  8. I do not meet the residency status but I have a valid PR Card. Will I be able to enter Canada and resume my PR status?
  9. How do I submit my application?
  10. Do I need someone to help me prepare my PRTD application?
  11. When should I apply?
  12. What happens if I do not meet the residency requirements?
  13. I got my PRTD. What happens next?
  14. How long is my PRTD valid for?
  15. I am travelling to Canada for an appeal hearing what documents must I provide

1. Who is considered as a permanent resident (PR) of Canada?

A PR is a person who has entered Canada on an immigrant visa. You are considered a PR on the date you first arrived in Canada as an immigrant. To be considered as a PR, you must have met the residency requirements under section 28 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act.

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2. Can I travel to Canada with an expired Permanent Resident (PR) card?

No, you cannot travel to Canada with an expired PR Card. If your PR card is no longer valid and you wish to travel to Canada, you must apply for a Permanent Resident Travel Document (PRTD) at the Canadian Visa Office responsible for your country of citizenship or the country in which you have been legally admitted. If it has been determined that you meet the residency obligations, you will be provided with the travel document that will facilitate your entry to Canada.

If you have been lawfully admitted to the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and Yemen as visitor or as a resident, you may apply for a PRTD in our office.

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3. Can I travel to Canada with a photocopy of my Permanent Resident (PR) Card?

No, you cannot travel to Canada with a photocopy of your PR card. You must have your original PR Card with you. If you are not in possession of your original PR Card, you must apply for a Permanent Resident Travel Document (PRTD) at the Canadian Visa Office responsible for determining whether or not your meet the residency obligations required in order to maintain your PR status. If it has been determined that you meet the residency obligations, you will be provided with the travel document that will facilitate your entry to Canada.

If you have been lawfully admitted to the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and Yemen as visitor or as a resident, you may apply for a PRTD in our office.

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4. Can I re-enter Canada using a Record of Landing (IMM 1000)/Confirmation of Permanent Residence (COPR-IMM 5292)/Returning Resident Permit?

No, you cannot re-enter Canada using a Record of Landing (IMM 1000), Confirmation of Permanent Residence (COPR-IMM 5292) and a Returning Resident Permit. These documents are not valid for travel back to Canada. You require a valid PR card or a valid permanent resident travel document (PRTD) to re-enter Canada by train, plane, boat or bus.

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5. How do I calculate the number of days I was present in Canada?

Please read our Permanent Resident Travel Document (PRTD) Application Guide.

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6. I have been a permanent resident (PR) for less than five years. How will my five-year period be calculated?

If it has been less than five years since you became a permanent resident of Canada, the five-year period will be calculated from the date of your landing, and the officer will consider whether it is possible that you could accumulate 730 days before the end of that five-year period.

For example, if you became a PR on 01 June 2003, spent sixty days in Canada, and wish to return to Canada on 01 February 2004, you will meet the residency criterion: your five-year period ends on 31 May 2008. You have already accumulated 60 days in Canada, and between 01 February 2004 and 31 May 2008, you will be able to accumulate the 670 days you require. On the other hand, if you became a PR on 01 June 2000, spent 30 days in Canada, and now wish to return, you will not meet the criterion: you still require 700 days, and it is not possible for you to acquire these in the time remaining before your five-year period expires on 31 May 2005.

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7. How do I keep my Permanent Resident (PR) status?

To keep your status as a permanent resident, you must have been physically present in Canada for a minimum of 730 days (not necessarily consecutive days) within the five years following the date on which you were granted permanent resident status. In some cases, you may accumulate residency days while outside Canada. For further information, please visit the Citizenship and Immigration Canada website at www.cic.gc.ca.

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8. I do not meet the residency requirements but I have a valid Permanent Resident (PR) Card. Will I be able to enter Canada and resume my PR status?

Yes, you may enter Canada with your valid PR Card. However, the port of entry (POE) officer is authorized to examine you for compliance with residency obligations and initiate enforcement action should it be deemed appropriate. An assessment of whether or not you meet the residency requirements will also be made when you apply for a PR Card renewal. If you do not meet the requirements, you may be asked to leave Canada.

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9. How do I submit my application?

Please visit the “How to submit” page for more information regarding how to submit an application for a PRTD.

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10. Do I need someone to help me prepare my Permanent Resident Travel Document (PRTD) Application?

You may prepare and submit your application yourself, or you may ask for help from family members, friends, non-governmental and religious organizations or others free of charge. You may also choose to hire an authorized representative. An authorized representative must be either: immigration consultant who is a member of the Canadian Society of Immigration Consultants; lawyer who is a member of a Canadian law society; or notary who is a member of the Chambre des notaires du Québec.

All applicants are treated equally, regardless of whether you prepared the documents yourself or through a third party.

You, as the applicant, are responsible for all information submitted. Please be sure to review all the information on your application form and ensure that all questions are answered truthfully before signing and dating the forms.

Please note that all persons who assist in the preparation of Permanent Resident Travel Document (PRTD) applications must be identified in the questionnaire. If you are authorizing the release of your file information to an authorized representative, the person must be identified on form IMM 5476B.

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11. When should I apply?

You should submit your application not more than one (1) month before the date of your proposed trip. A Permanent Resident Travel Document (PRTD) issued in Abu Dhabi is valid 30 days. It cannot be extended and cannot be used for multiple entries. To see our processing times for PRTDs, please visit the Average Processing Times page.

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12. What happens if I do not meet the residency requirements?

You will receive a refusal letter explaining the reason(s) for refusal and the procedures for appeal. If you do not appeal the decision within 60 days, you will no longer be a PR of Canada.

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13. I got my Permanent Resident Travel Document (PRTD). What happens next?

Once in Canada, you should apply for a permanent resident (PR) card. Unlike the travel document, the PR card allows you to enter Canada multiple times without having to apply for a travel document each time. The application kit Applying for a Permanent Resident Card (IMM 5445) is available on www.cic.gc.ca or, if you are in Canada, you can call the Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) Call Centre at 1-888-242-2100 (toll-free).

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14. How long is my Permanent Resident Travel Document (PRTD) valid for?

A PRTD is valid for 30 days from the date of its issuance. It cannot be extended nor can it be used for multiple entry to Canada. You must arrive in Canada on or before the expiry period which is read “DAY/MONTH/YEAR” (DD/MM/YYYY).

For example, the expiry date on your travel document is 02/05/2008. You MUST enter Canada on or before May 2, 2008.

If your PRTD was not used within the validity period and you still would like to travel to Canada, you must submit a new application for a PRTD and a new assessment will be done by the Visa Officer.

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15. I am travelling to Canada for an appeal hearing what documents must I provide?

In order for our office to issue you a Permanent Resident Travel Document (PRTD) to allow you to attend your appeal hearing, you must submit the following documents to the Immigration Section of the Canadian Embassy in Abu Dhabi:

  1. A copy of  the Immigration Appeal Division's (IAD) letter indicating that you are requested to appear in person in Canada to attend an appeal hearing; and
  2. Your valid passport.

Please note: You do not need to submit a new PRTD application and do not need to pay additional processing fees.

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Date Modified:
2011-06-02