*2024 Results: Approx. 99% of Mark Zinck's clients avoided a criminal record (conviction) for charges of theft, fraud, assault, mischief and threats.

How Criminal Charges impact Canadian Immigration / IRCC Status and Applications

Being charged with a criminal offence in Canada may cause problems with the accused’s IRCC immigration status if they are not a Canadian Citizen. This may lead to deportation, being deemed inadmissible to Canada, or to future IRCC applications (work permit, PR, citizenship) being denied. The outcome of the criminal case will determine how IRCC and the CBSA will evaluate the immigrant in the future when processing applications and at the border. In some cases there is specific paperwork, lawyer letters, and other documentation that can be provided to proactively avoid problems.

I am an immigrant. How do I know if I have been charged criminally?

Those who are criminally charged in Canada will have one of three documents provided to them by the police or the courts:
  1. A Form 9 Appearance Notice: This document will contain 2 conditions: to attend for fingerprints, and to attend court. While this document may state at the top to a person “not yet charged with an offence” the person is still being charged. This is a technicality as the person will be charged when the police officer swears/submits their paperwork to the court which always happens after the arrest date. This document may be a small blue/green sheet or printed on a larger white piece of paper.

  2. A Form 10 Undertaking: This document will contain a court date, often a fingerprint date (if not already fingerprinted at the police station), and may have other conditions including reporting any change of address, employment or occupation, not to communicate directly or indirectly with certain people, not to attend at certain locations, or other restrictions relating to the circumstances of the charge.

  3. A Form 11 Release Order: This document is provided by the court when an accused is granted bail. The conditions will be similar to the Form 10 Undertaking but may also require a surety (3rd party) to supervise the release. Some accused are released without a surety after a bail hearing (most often with the consent of the Crown). For new immigrants, sometimes it may be difficult for them to find a surety as they may not know many people locally who can supervise their release.

If you have one of the above noted three documents you are being charged criminally in Canada with an offence under the Criminal Code. You will be fingerprinted and your case will go through the court process. Your immigration status will depend on the outcome of the case.

I am a student from India, someone on a work permit, or looking to apply for PR, how will this affect me?

It does not matter what your country of origin is. IRCC is only concerned with what may happen to your case in the future and what the ultimate outcome is. We routinely represent clients from India, China, the Philippines, South Korea, the U.K., the E.U., South America, etc. There are 3 issues that matter when evaluating the impact of criminal charges on Canadian immigration status:

  1. The timing of the offence in relation to their IRCC application and renewal due dates,
  2. the potential maximum punishment available upon conviction, and
  3. the ultimate outcome (sentence imposed) in the case.
Some people are charged at a critical point in time when they are required to submit their application immediately. When IRCC discovers that the person has a pending criminal case for theft under $5000, fraud under $5000, mischief under $5000, assault, uttering threats, over 80/impaired/DUI, etc. they will immediately hold off on making a decision until they can confirm that the criminal charges do not render the applicant inadmissible.

Getting the Crown Attorney to elect to proceed by summary conviction

Since all of the above noted charges are Crown elect indictable offences which carry potential sentences of 2 or more years in prison, they may lead to deportation depending on the case outcome. Sometimes the accused's lawyer can get the Crown to elect to proceed summary conviction (also known as by summarily) which depending on the charge may be sufficient for IRCC to approve their client's application. This depends on what type of offence the accused is charged with. In any case the final ruling of the court will determine how IRCC and the CBSA evaluate the accused’s immigration application.

Approximately 50% of our clients are in the immigration system in Canada. It is important to understand which types of outcomes will cause IRCC problems and do everything possible to avoid them. Every case is different. Some cases require specific paperwork to be obtained and submitted up front. In others we have to write letters on behalf of our client to avoid delays, problems, and refusals (permanent or temporary). While the outcome is the most important element, some people have application due date deadlines while the charge is still pending. We may be able to prove to IRCC that the immigrant will not be found inadmissible prior to the completion of their case to avoid problems.

To our knowledge, as of 2021 none of our clients have been deported, been found inadmissible, or had their IRCC applications refused because of the criminal charges we represented them on. Approximately 50% of our criminal defence clients are in the immigration system.

If you have received one of the above three documents from the police it is important that you hire a lawyer immediately as there are sometimes time sensitive things that can be proactively done to reduce the likelihood of having problems.

   Call us today.

You don't have to jeopardize your future or waste thousands of dollars on excessive legal fees. We provide effective and affordable lawyer representation for those charged with criminal offences throughout Ontario, Canada.

Have a skilled criminal lawyer who focuses on criminal law protect you and your future from the stigma and consequences of a criminal record and conviction.

    call now: 647-228-5969


Your case will be defended by a fully licensed Practicing Lawyer of the Law Society of Ontario. For more information about our lawyer, click here.

We provide our clients with:
  • Flat fee pricing
  • 99%+ non-conviction success rate
  • U.S. travel advice and information
  • Help with related immigration/IRCC issues
  • Employment background check advice/services
  • Fingerprints and records destruction services
  • Clear goals of getting charges dropped and bail conditions varied without a trial
  • Vulnerable Sector records suppression help
  • Experienced, focused counsel

* Please note:

If you are not a paying client, we cannot answer questions and provide assistance about avoiding jail and/or a criminal record, employment background checks, IRCC/immigration applications and status, or travel to the U.S. in the future. This includes those who have already retained other counsel and those whose cases have already been completed.

We only can respond to calls and emails relating to current Ontario criminal cases. Please see our FAQ for a listing of the courthouses we service.

Are you a lawyer? If you are defending a criminal case and are looking for expert advice regarding possible defences, case strategies, and information release management call us at: 647-228-5969.

Please note: We do not accept legal aid certificate cases. All clients are handled on a private retainer only.

*2024 Results: the percentage of 99% of clients avoiding a criminal record (conviction) stated on this page is based solely on Lawyer Mark Zinck's personal representation of approximately 2000 criminal defence case clients as of the year 2024. Past results are not necessarily an indication of future results.


Your questions and concerns are extremely important to me.


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   Criminal Information:

   We provide:
  • Flat fee pricing
  • 99%+ non-conviction success rate
  • U.S. travel advice and information
  • Help with related immigration/IRCC issues
  • Employment background check advice and services
  • Fingerprints and records destruction services
  • A clear goal of getting the charges dropped without a trial
  • Vulnerable Sector records suppression help
  • Timely resolutions
  • Lawyer/client privilege
  • Experienced, focused counsel