1. What is a Permanent Resident (PR) card and why is it important?
A permanent resident is an individual who has been given permanent resident status but is not a Canadian citizen. Permanent residents are citizens of other countries.
Your PR card can be used to show that you have permanent resident status in Canada. If you travel outside Canada, you will need to show your card and your passport when you come back on a commercial vehicle, like an airplane, boat, train, or bus.
You need a valid permanent resident (PR) card to return to Canada by plane, train, bus, or boat. If you know your card will expire when you are travelling, renew it before you leave. You can only renew your card in Canada. Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) does not send PR cards to non-Canadian addresses and does not allow third parties to get them for you.
2. What is a permanent resident travel document (PRTD)?
If you are outside Canada and do not have a valid PR card, you need a permanent resident travel document (PRTD) to return to Canada.
You can apply for a permanent resident travel document if you:
- are a permanent resident,
- do not have a valid PR card showing your PR status,
- are outside Canada, and
- will return to Canada by airplane, boat, train, or bus.
You can apply for PRTD in the nearest Visa Application Centre (VAC).
3. How long is the PR card valid for?
Most PR cards are valid for five years, but some are only valid for one year. The expiry date is printed on the card. When your PR card expires, you cannot use it as a travel document. If your PR card will expire within six months, you should apply to renew your card before you leave Canada to travel. If you are re-entering Canada by commercial vehicle and have an expired PR card, get your PRTD to re-enter Canada.
4. I just received my Confirmation of Permanent Residence (COPR), how do I get my PR card?
New permanent residents do not need to apply for a PR card. IRCC will send the PR card to you when you immigrate to Canada. You would need to provide your Canadian mailing address to avoid any delays. If you do not have a Canadian address to provide when you land, you have 180 days after you enter Canada to send it to IRCC.
If you are already in Canada when you get COPR, IRCC will contact you about next steps. You will need to have a short interview with an officer. You have two options for your interview: make an appointment at one of our offices in Canada (best option), or, go to a Canadian “port of entry” (border crossing), and present proof that you have the funds to support yourself and your family, your Confirmation of Permanent Residence (COPR) and your permanent resident visa (if you have one)
5. How long will it take to process my PR card? What are the processing fees?
The current timelines (as of June 2020) to process PR Card application is as follows:
Renew or replace PR card = 174 days
Get new PR card = 113 days
Processing fee = $50 CAD
6. I need PR card on urgent basis and cannot wait for 100+ days to get my PR card. What are my options?
You could apply for urgent PR card processing. To qualify for this, you must be travelling within the next three months due to:
- your own serious illness
- the death of a family member
- work related to your current job
- the serious illness of a family member
IRCC is very strict regarding acceptable reasons for urgent processing of a PR card and, therefore, even if you seem to qualify for urgent processing, there is no guarantee that IRCC will process your application urgently or that you’ll get your PR card on time.
If you know your card will expire when you are travelling, renew it before you leave. You can only renew your card in Canada.
If you do not get your new PR card in time, then apply for PRTD once you are outside Canada. Make sure to renew your PR card once you return to Canada
7. I need to leave Canada urgently and I have not received my permanent resident card yet. Can I later return to Canada without a PR card?
The ability to return to Canada, without a PR card, really depends on how you are planning to travel back to Canada.
- If you are returning by private vehicle, i.e. a car, truck, motorcycle, or recreational vehicle that you own, borrow, or rent, then there are other documents you can use to enter the country. A complete list of documents is available on the Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA) website (link : https://www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/travel-voyage/td-dv-eng.html) . When you return to Canada, apply for a PR card if you plan to travel outside Canada again.
- If you are returning by commercial vehicle (like airplane, bus, train, or boat), you must apply for a permanent resident travel document. Otherwise you may not be able to travel to Canada. You can apply for a PR card when you return to Canada.
- If you are traveling soon or already applied, you could ask for an urgent renewal of your PR card
SPECIAL SECTION : ** COVID-19 Related special information **
8. I traveled outside Canada before the closures started and I was not able to fly back to Canada as anticipated. I have been stuck in my country for more than 6 months, though my original travel plan was for 3 weeks. Now I want to fly back to Canada, but my PR card has expired. What are my options?
You must apply for a permanent resident travel document (PRTD) before you plan to travel to Canada, otherwise you may not be able to travel. You can apply for PRTD in the nearest Visa Application Centre (VAC).
9. I need to apply for a permanent resident travel document (PRTD) but the nearest VAC centre is still closed. What are my options?
Normally, you apply for a PRTD at a VAC but due to COVID-19, most VACs are closed. If your VAC is closed, you follow these steps and submit your application for a PRTD by email.
- Read the instruction guide to make sure you prepare a complete application.
- Make electronic copies (scans) of the required documents listed in the Document Checklist
- Complete and scan the Application for a Permanent Resident Travel Document (IMM 5524) form
- Pay your fees and provide a copy of the receipt.
- If you have it, provide your confirmed flight ticket or itinerary for your travel to Canada that clearly shows:
- your flight number,
- date of travel
- arrival airport in Canada.
- Send the scanned copy of your application package by email:
- In the subject line, put: “PRTD application: (your name)”
- Send to: IRCC.COVIDPRTD-TVRPCOVID.IRCC@cic.gc.ca
Refer this document for full details : https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/services/coronavirus-covid19/permanent-residents.html#outsidecanada
10. My COPR is expiring soon and I am unable to travel due to restriction on international travel – what do I do?
As per the instructions issued by IRCC, you would need to contact and inform IRCC via the Web form that you are unable or unwilling to travel prior to expiration of your COPR. Your file will be reopened within 90 days and subsequent instructions will be issued.
Disclaimer : Information provided in this blog article cannot be deemed as legal advice.