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February 21, 2019

How to keep your Permanent Residence Status in Canada

Edward C. Corrigan

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If you are a Permanent Resident of Canada you keep your status as a Permanent Resident until it is taken away from you in a legal proceeding or you surrender it to Canadian authorities. You can lose your status as a Permanent Resident of Canada for convictions that are considered "Serious Criminality."

You do not need a current Permanent Resident Card to remain in Canada. It is only required for re-admittance to Canada if you travel abroad.

You need to have resided two years out of the past 5 years in Canada to maintain your Permanent Resident status in Canada. If you are accompanied by a Canadian Citizen or are employed by a Canadian company you can retain your status as a PR.

If you do not have the required two years residence in Canada and are in Canada simply wait until you have met the requirement of 2 years in Canada and then apply. You must truthfully answer all questions but they normally only look at the last 5 years of residence.

The Form for renewing your Permanent Resident Card only asks where you have lived for the last 5 years. You can legally answer where you have been for the last 5 years to prove that you have meet the residency requirement.

To qualify for Canadian Citizenship, you have to live in Canada for 3 out of the past 5 years. Again, Canadian Citizenship is only interested in where you have resided over the past 5 years to make sure that you meet the 3-year residence requirement.

This is a very brief overview of the resident requirement to maintain your status as a Permanent Resident or to qualify as a Canadian Citizen. Please consult with a lawyer or other qualified individual to get a complete run down on the law of residency in Canada.

Edward C. Corrigan is certified as a specialist by the Law Society of Upper Canada in Citizenship, Immigration and Immigration and Refugee Law. Edward can be contacted at or at 519-439-4015

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