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  1. #1
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    Sep 2005
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    Recent canada and dui border crossings

    So I know a few years back getting into Canada with a DUI conviction in the USA was hit or miss depending on where you crossed, etc. maybe a one in ten chance of not going through in some places and no chance at places like peace bridge between Seattle and Vancouver.

    I was wondering if this is still the case with specific evidence that people got through. I'm asking because I just got invited on a trip that leaves this Friday so I don't have time to gather the proper paperwork to be deemed rehabilitated by Canada and want to know if it's worth the gamble or if I'll even be able to get into canuckistan

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Aug 2010
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    The best bet is to fly into Vancouver if you can. I didn't have a dui, but I drove across 11 out of 12 years with an offense that they don't appreciate. They charged me 200 canukians to get in. The main reason they "caught" me was because the driver was from CA and I was from RI. I never had problem was I lived in WA or CA.

    Good luck.
    Last edited by Bosco; 03-11-2012 at 08:34 PM.

  3. #3
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    Mar 2008
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    lake level
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    You're pretty much screwed at any border crossing. If you have skins and get creative, there's a few spots you can sneak in, though.
    I really lack the words to compliment myself today. - Alberto Tomba

  4. #4
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    Jul 2010
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    If it's been more than 5years since the completion of your sentence/probation, and you haven't done anything else stupid, you will likely be deemed rehabilitated at the border and can get in. Plan on extra time (a few hours) to complete the paper work and anal probe. If it's less than 5 years, you are indeed screwed. Contact a canadian immigration lawyer. They can answer your questions with more certainty.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
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    Golden
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    My friend with a DUI conviction within this past year cannot get into Canada, and this is at a very slow/mellow border crossing outside of Haines. If you wanted you could easily put the skins on and cruise across.
    Drive slow, homie.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
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    7,221
    It's up to the individual border agent, so it's totally hit or miss and I wouldn't roll up to the border unless you're prepared to get turned around.
    Security is mostly a superstition. It does not exist in nature... Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. Life is either a daring adventure or nothing. -Helen Keller

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
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    I dealt with this 10+ years ago. I was given a one time pass. I had to keep it with me while I was in Montreal and had to show it to any officer had I got into trouble. A couple years later I tried and they turned me around at the border and told me I needed to go to see a council and request access if I wanted to be admitted again. I just said fuck it and realized Canada is fucked and haven't been back. They don't want my dollars due to past indiscretion I wasn't going to give it to them.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheMessenger View Post
    If it's been more than 5years since the completion of your sentence/probation, and you haven't done anything else stupid, you will likely be deemed rehabilitated at the border and can get in. Plan on extra time (a few hours) to complete the paper work and anal probe. If it's less than 5 years, you are indeed screwed. Contact a canadian immigration lawyer. They can answer your questions with more certainty.
    Its my understanding that you need an FBI background check (which takes a few weeks to get) and court documents from the offending offended to be deemed rehabilitated no matter the.length.since the offense

    Sounds like the border.crossings are more.uniform and less hit-or-miss these.days, eh? Probably not a possibility. These days without having the.paperwork or can you get over.the border

  9. #9
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    Mar 2005
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    Not recent, but FWIW I had trouble getting back into Canada once after I crossed back into the US to go skiing. I was working for a week in Canada and they had even issued me documentation to work in Canada. I went to go back north and they asked me if I had a record. I didn't know it was a big deal so I volunteered that I had a DWI approximately 10 years before that. This was at night so they turned me back and told me to come back in the morning. I had to fill out paperwork basically explaining why I would not drive drunk again and all that I had learned from the experience, just fill out the paperwork like you would think they want to see, etc.... They then had to fax the paperwork to some official who after roughly 4 hours approved my "application for forgiveness for my past transgressions from Canada." I didn't need any court documents or FBI paperwork as mentioned above. I simply filled out the application, it was approved, and then I had to pay them approximately $150CAD. Somebody mentioned the five year barrier. I believe that or some other time frame is a requirement before they will consider letting you in. Given another DWI a couple years ago, I'm in the not getting across the border club unless they don't check.

  10. #10
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    Nov 2006
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    It is true that they can deny you entry for a DWI but it is also 100% up to the border agent. We had a friend who visited Canada 1-2 times per year after his 2001 DWI but was denied entry 2 years ago. Here's a link to what to do once your 5 years have passed in order to be 'rehabilitated': http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/informa...ns/rehabil.asp.

    In the spring of 2010 I had paid for a 7-day heli trip with CMH up in Revelstoke for 2011; in June 2010 I got popped for a DWI, which was later amended to a Reckless Driving (small amount of alcohol and marijuana in my system) by the time I plead guilty in October 2010. I spoke with a Canadian immigration lawyer who told me it would be a complete roll of the dice whether I could get in or not. Apparently, from what he told me and what I have researched, a reckless driving charge is considered on par with a DWI from a Canadian standpoint. With $5500 riding on the disposition of a border agent I decided to sell my spot.
    "No snowflake in an avalanche ever feels responsible" -Stanislaw Jerzy Lec

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
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    23
    I didn't have a dui, but I drove across 11 out of 12 years with an offense that they don't appreciate. They charged me 200 canukians to get in. The main reason they "caught" me was because the driver was from CA and I was from RI

  12. #12
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    Oct 2007
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    bucks county pa
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    have been turned back at the border going sledding up in Canada....Dropppd the dude off at bus station in NY and went back... took his sled with us for an extra which came in handy....same dumbass with us to whistler, cost him 300 in airport to conintue on or he had to go back and pay for next flight out....... I wonder if our borders to the same to the canadians....
    always forward but never straight

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
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    213
    We do not do it to them in reverse. Not sure why Canada is so hard core but even George W Bush had to get a redemption paperwork to visit when he was president. I have not found any other country that does it.

    As far as flying, is the $300 or so true? I had a Japanese friend who flew into Vancouver with a previous CA DUI and he was put on the next flight back to Japan. SO I would be very curious about the flying in route and am interested if anyone has stories about that.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
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    75
    Actually, as a Canadian trying to get into the US with a DUI or any other minor charge is 100% impossible without paying big $ and rolling the dice. The US has far harsher border laws then Canada and the US guards are on average, amongst the rudest human beings I have ever met.

    I have never been charged with anything ever but i traveled to Vermont once with a friend who had been charged with Marijuana possesion (3 grams) when he was 18. We were turned away at the border because of his Charge (he was never convicted) and MY passport is now flagged. That means I have trouble getting into the US from time to time even though I have never been in trouble with the law, but I have a friend who was...

    It's pretty ridiculous, but a US border services issue is next to impossible to resolve. There is no appeal process and there is no complaints mechanism. Once you are flagged, you are flagged so when I'm 80 and taking my kids to Disney world I'm going to be given a hard time by the Border Guard and will have to tell him that I tried to enter the US with a "Known Felon" (their words, not mine) in 2001.

    Canada's border is a pain, but the US border service is ridiculous. Not even close to being an accountable democratic institution.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by cascadianwarrior View Post
    It is true that they can deny you entry for a DWI but it is also 100% up to the border agent. We had a friend who visited Canada 1-2 times per year after his 2001 DWI but was denied entry 2 years ago. Here's a link to what to do once your 5 years have passed in order to be 'rehabilitated': http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/informa...ns/rehabil.asp.
    reading this, it seems like I need an FBI background check, court documents, five years+ since conviction and a fecal sample to get "deemed rehabilitated" which would mean no go for me since i won't be able to get the background check in time.

    but then some people are making it sound like you can go to the border if its been more than five years (it has for me) with your passport and $200-500 in your pocket and get 'deemed rehabilitated' and allowed to enter canada......

    Quote Originally Posted by Crass3000 View Post
    Not recent, but FWIW I had trouble getting back into Canada once after I crossed back into the US to go skiing. I was working for a week in Canada and they had even issued me documentation to work in Canada. I went to go back north and they asked me if I had a record. I didn't know it was a big deal so I volunteered that I had a DWI approximately 10 years before that. This was at night so they turned me back and told me to come back in the morning. I had to fill out paperwork basically explaining why I would not drive drunk again and all that I had learned from the experience, just fill out the paperwork like you would think they want to see, etc.... They then had to fax the paperwork to some official who after roughly 4 hours approved my "application for forgiveness for my past transgressions from Canada." I didn't need any court documents or FBI paperwork as mentioned above. I simply filled out the application, it was approved, and then I had to pay them approximately $150CAD. Somebody mentioned the five year barrier. I believe that or some other time frame is a requirement before they will consider letting you in. Given another DWI a couple years ago, I'm in the not getting across the border club unless they don't check.

    I'm hoping this is the case if i end up get to go on this trip. roll of the dice, will work fine and where i'm going to be crossing, i've heard is one of the most lenient areas to get across. Guess i'll just plan on spending more on travel costs.... oh canADa

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
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    542
    If you want to be 100% sure you can fill out the paperwork beforehand, but since you don't have time that is not an option.

    The border guard can deem you rehabilitated on the spot. Bring whatever document you have with you just in case. Also, if you are found inadmissible the border guard can also grant you what is called a Temporary Residence Permit to gain entry. $$$

    If you have not been previously found inadmissible (passport flagged),it is also possible(likely) that when you get to the border, they will just wave you through, since they can't do a backround check on every single person entering. This all depends entirely on your attitude and behavior.

    To avoid the 'special' line, shave, dress nice, CUT YOUR HAIR. Be nice. Hide your tattoos. Don't look like a gangtser. Look like a professional, not like a junk show. Answer their questions directly, tell the truth, but don't give up any unnecessary info. (Don't tell the border guard you had a DUI and ask what should you do?) If they send you to the 'special line' and they ask, yes tell the truth, if not, keep it to yourself. Don't appear nervous. Be confident and calm. Travel in a group if possible. Do not carry any drugs, tobacco, firearms, weapons or alcohol or agricultural products(apple, oranges, perishables etc.) Have a specific itinerary, travel dates etc and HAVE A HOTEL RESERVATION!!!! That's really important. No hotel reservation is a big red flag. Don't say you are car camping. Make one up if you have to. If you do all that, you will be just fine.
    Last edited by TheMessenger; 03-12-2012 at 02:31 PM.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Breck, Lahaina
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    209
    They didn't like our big white van full of bikes or that I'd been finger printed (not charged) after arguing with a cop back in college. It took an hour but we got in.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
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    SLc,UT
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    Been to many countries in my life, hands down the most off the wall oddball questions on entry are from my CA entries. Just bizarre random questions sometimes.

    Sent from my SPH-D710 using TGR Forums

  19. #19
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    Aug 2010
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    Sierra Foothills
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    I flew into Vancouver 3 times, after being stopped and having to pay at the border crossing, without issue. I would assume my passport number had not been marked as a trouble maker.

    Quote Originally Posted by nbt View Post
    We do not do it to them in reverse. Not sure why Canada is so hard core but even George W Bush had to get a redemption paperwork to visit when he was president. I have not found any other country that does it.

    As far as flying, is the $300 or so true? I had a Japanese friend who flew into Vancouver with a previous CA DUI and he was put on the next flight back to Japan. SO I would be very curious about the flying in route and am interested if anyone has stories about that.

  20. #20
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    Mar 2008
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    the ham
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    Quote Originally Posted by Your mom's a snowblader View Post
    Actually, as a Canadian trying to get into the US with a DUI or any other minor charge is 100% impossible without paying big $ and rolling the dice. The US has far harsher border laws then Canada and the US guards are on average, amongst the rudest human beings I have ever met.

    Canada's border is a pain, but the US border service is ridiculous. Not even close to being an accountable democratic institution.
    ^^^ You could switch the words Canada and US, and it would be just as true. You roll up to the Canadian border with US plates + passport and you will receive an entirely different treatment than you would as a Canadian returning home. I lived in Canada for a while, and when I drove into the US to visit my family (with BC plates on my car), I got the third degree until they discovered I was American. Then it was all smiles and "welcome home".

    And the border isn't an "accountable democratic institution", it's a "rights free zone" run by a police force.

    You could be right about the US having harsher border laws - we're definitely a lot more paranoid.

    As for the OP, TheMessenger's advice is good. If you plan on going there again in the future, get the paperwork done.

  21. #21
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    Oct 2003
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheMessenger View Post
    Have a specific itinerary, travel dates etc and HAVE A HOTEL RESERVATION!!!! That's really important.
    Agreed. They ask me where I'm staying virtually every time I go to Canada. They're looking for something specific, too. "A condo" isn't going to cut it.

  22. #22
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
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    MN
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    FWIW.... Border guards are trained to be assholes and intimidating when you get to them. They know it will make you more nervous if you're up to no good and are trained to look for your reaction. When going into Canada, they were definately real pricks to me. Ironically, when coming back into the US they didn't seem real welcoming either though. It's obviously better to cross the border mid-day when they are busy if you have something to worry about. Answering questions with, "Yes Sir," "No Sir," "That's correct Sir," etc. definately will go miles. And as somebody above mentioned, answer questions with only the information you need to. Don't volunteer any extra information that they are not asking for. Don't be evasive but don't open up and put your foot in your mouth either.

  23. #23
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
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    28,862
    fuck the cheesers not wanting easy US $$$$, if i can't find it here in the USA oh well, montana is close enough to the canadian thing
    loads of em ride Baker every weekend so they must want something they can not get back home.
    i have boycotted the border since 1984. canadas best export is steve nash.
    spend your moneys in the USA
    bobby

  24. #24
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    Mar 2005
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    MN
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    Quote Originally Posted by flowing alpy View Post
    spend your moneys in the USA
    I couldn't agree more. From my experience, most Canadians look down on us poooo Amercuns as a whole - almost like they're French or something.

  25. #25
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Posts
    554
    From the above descriptions of Yanks coming to Canada, it seems the US and Canada have similar rules. Although, I have heard anecdotally that if you are a Canuck with a pot possession conviction - you will not be treated nicely by USBP at all.

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