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  • Writer's pictureImmergity Immigration Consultant

Permanent Resident Card Renewal in Canada

Permanent Resident Card Renewal

Permanent Resident Card (PR Card) of Canada

The Permanent Resident Card, commonly referred to as the PR Card, is an official document issued by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) to permanent residents of Canada. It serves as proof of the holder's permanent resident status in the country. The card is wallet-sized, making it convenient for individuals to carry with them.

Purpose of the PR Card:

  1. Proof of Status: The primary purpose of the PR Card is to serve as official evidence of the holder's permanent resident status in Canada. While the card itself doesn't confer any status, it is a tangible proof of an already granted status.

  2. Travel Document for Re-entry: For permanent residents traveling outside of Canada, the PR Card is crucial for re-entry. When returning to Canada by commercial carriers (like airlines, buses, trains, or boats), they must present a valid PR Card to prove their status. Without a valid PR Card, carriers might refuse boarding, and individuals might face challenges at the port of entry.

  3. Access to Benefits: While the PR Card is not the sole determinant for accessing benefits, it can be used as a supporting document when applying for Canadian social benefits, including health care services.

  4. Legal Requirement: The PR Card is a legal document, and permanent residents are advised to carry it with them, especially when traveling within Canada. It can be requested by Canadian officials to verify one's status.

  5. Renewal of Other Documents: Some processes or applications in Canada, such as renewing a driver's license, might require individuals to show proof of their residency status. In such cases, the PR Card can be used.

Additional Points to Consider:

  • Validity: A PR Card is typically valid for five years, but its duration can vary. It's essential to renew the card before its expiration if the holder plans to travel outside of Canada and return using a commercial carrier.

  • Residency Obligation: To maintain permanent resident status, an individual must live in Canada for at least 730 days during the last five years. This requirement ensures that permanent residents make Canada their home. If someone doesn't meet this obligation, they risk losing their permanent resident status.

  • Pathway to Citizenship: Holding a PR Card and maintaining permanent resident status are steps towards Canadian citizenship. Permanent residents can apply for Canadian citizenship after meeting certain residency and other requirements.

Why Renew Your PR Card?

The Permanent Resident Card is an essential document for those who reside in Canada but are not Canadian citizens. Here's why you should consider renewing it:

  1. Proof of Status: The PR card is the official proof of your permanent resident status in Canada. Without a valid card, proving your status can be challenging.

  2. Travel: If you plan to travel outside of Canada, you'll need a valid PR card to return. Without it, you might face difficulties re-entering the country.

  3. Legal Requirements: Keeping your official documents, including your PR card, up-to-date is a legal requirement in Canada.

PR card renewal requirements*

To renew your PR card in Canada, you must:

  • Have been physically present in Canada for at least 730 days during the last five years.

  • Provide supporting documents, such as travel documents, to prove your residency.

  • Complete and submit the PR card renewal application form.

  • Pay the required renewal fee.

*Application in Canada: Your application for renewal must be submitted while you are in Canada.

*No Immigration Violations: If you're under a removal order or have been found inadmissible to Canada, you cannot renew your PR card.

PR Card Renewal Fee

The fee for PR card renewal is subject to change. Currently, the fee is CAD $50. It's essential to check the IRCC website or consult with an immigration expert for the most current fee structure.

Leave Canada with an expired PR card

You can leave Canada with an expired Permanent Resident card, but re-entry might be problematic. Commercial carriers might refuse boarding, and you'll need a PRTD to return to Canada. It's advisable to renew your PR card before traveling outside of Canada.

Common Questions about Permanent Resident Card Renewal

  • How long will it take to process my PR card renewal application? Most new PR cards are processed within 104 days. However, processing times can vary based on the volume of applications.

  • What if my PR card expires while I'm outside of Canada? If you're outside of Canada and your card expires, you'll need to apply for a Permanent Resident Travel Document (PRTD) to return.

  • Can I renew my PR card before it expires? Yes, if your PR card will expire in less than nine months, you can apply for a renewal.

  • How many times can I renew my PR card Canada? There's no limit to the number of times you can renew your PR card in Canada. As long as you meet the residency obligation and other requirements, you can apply for a renewal.

  • How long after my PR card expires can I renew it? You can apply for a renewal even after your PR card expires. However, if you're outside of Canada without a valid PR card, you'll need a Permanent Resident Travel Document (PRTD) to return. It's always best to renew your card before it expires to avoid potential complications.

  • How long can I stay in Canada with an expired PR card? An expired PR card doesn't affect your permanent resident status. You can continue to stay in Canada indefinitely. However, without a valid PR card, you might face difficulties proving your status, especially when re-entering Canada after travel.

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