Understanding the Application and Renewal Processes for these Important Documents
Changes to Canada’s entry rules have made Permanent Resident Cards (PR Card) a required document for residents travelling outside of Canada. When returning to Canada, a permanent resident must present this government-issued photo ID to successfully re-enter the country.
New permanent residents automatically receive their PR Card once they attain permanent resident status. However, they must contact Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada within 180 days of becoming a permanent resident to provide their Canadian mailing address. Missing that window of opportunity means the new residents will have to follow the more time-consuming application process.
The Application Process
Applying for a card provides official, readily available proof of the person’s permanent resident status. If you travel outside of Canada, you will need to present your card and your passport when you come back on a commercial vehicle such as an airplane, boat, train or bus.
You should submit an application if any of the following reasons apply to your situation:
- Your PR card has or will soon expire;
- You missed the 180-day window with Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada;
- Your original card was lost, stolen, or damaged and you need a replacement card; or
- You need to change the sex designation on your PR card.
Applying can be a relatively straightforward process assuming the PR meets all the requirements. However, if the individual has been outside of Canada and does not meet the physical presence requirement of 2 out of 5 years, then an immigration lawyer will have to explain the reasons for this and present any humanitarian and compassionate factors that apply to the person’s case.
If you are a permanent resident without a valid PR card, and you are not currently in Canada, then you must apply for a Permanent Resident Travel Document to return to Canada. However, once again, if you do not meet all the requirements, the PR Travel Document can be rejected. As such, it is always advisable to seek advice from an immigration lawyer on your eligibility before submitting your application.
If you meet all the requirements to apply for your permanent residency care, you can prepare and submit your application. However, you must thoroughly and accurately complete the steps for the PR card application process. It is advisable for you to speak to an immigration lawyer to determine if they need to prepare an affidavit and legal submissions on your behalf to be submitted along with your application. In this regard, you can contact a permanent resident lawyer.
Step 1: Gather the Required Documents
Your application must include the following documents:
- A completed checklist of all the required documents;
- Your PR card if you are replacing a damaged card;
- A photocopy of your main identity document. This could be a passport, travel document, or certificate of identity. It must have your name, photo, date of birth, issue and expiry date, and the document type and number; and
- Two recent (taken within the last six months) identical photos of yourself that meet photo specifications.
Step 2: Complete the Application
You must fill out the application forms accurately and completely and ensure that you do not misrepresent or withhold any information. You may also fill out a form to appoint a representative, such as a permanent resident lawyer, to help you complete this application.
Step 3: Pay the Application Fee
Pay the application fee of $50 CAN online for a PR card. And attach a copy of the receipt of this payment to your application.
Step 4: Submit the Application
Once you have gathered all the required documents, filled out the forms, paid the fee, and completed the application checklist, send your application to the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) processing centre.
The IRCC will send you an Acknowledgement of Receipt (AoR) of your application. The IRCC will also send your card in the mail, or a letter telling you where to pick up your new PR card.