Expunge your criminal record by requesting a pardon or a record suspension and gain the life you deserve.
What is a Criminal Record
A criminal record is the official documentation of a person’s involvement with the criminal justice system. If you were ever charged with an offence under the Criminal Code of Canada, and if you were convicted, even if it was something minor, you very likely have a Criminal Record. Unlike a Credit Report, any convictions recorded on your Criminal Record will remain on your record for life.
Most employers in Canada will conduct a Criminal Record Check, before hiring someone for a position within their company.
Having a Criminal Record can also cause complications when traveling to the United States of America (US), whether that be by air or by crossing the land border.
Who Can Access Your Criminal Record?
Different federal and provincial agencies have access to criminal records through the Canadian Police Information Centre (CPIC). These include:
- Citizenship and Immigrations;
- Parks Canada;
- Canada Customs and Revenue Agency;
- United States Customs and Immigration; and
- The US State Police.
What Is a Record Suspension?
A Record Suspension allows people who were convicted of a criminal offence, but have completed their sentence and demonstrated that they are law-abiding citizens for a prescribed number of years, to have their criminal record kept separate and apart from other criminal records.
A record suspension removes a person’s criminal record from the Canadian Police Information Centre (CPIC) database. This means that a search of CPIC will not show that the individual has a criminal record or a record suspension.
A Record Suspension helps individuals who have a Criminal Record access employment and educational opportunities and to reintegrate into society.
The Criminal Records Act (CRA) applies only to records kept by federal organizations, but most provincial and municipal criminal justice agencies also restrict access to their records once they are told that a record suspension has been ordered.
It is important to understand that a Record Suspension does not erase a convicted offence, but sets it aside. Upon receiving a Record Suspension, an individual can apply to jobs without having to worry about employers seeing their Criminal Record.
How Can Shory Law Help?
Our criminal defence lawyers have experience in successfully obtaining Record Suspensions for our clients. We will communicate with the Parole Board of Canada on your behalf, to ensure that you put a persuasive application forward, in obtaining a Record Suspension for your Criminal Record.
If you have a Criminal Record and would like to move on with your life, without it hindering you, come see one of the lawyers at Shory Law. Let our knowledge and experience guide you and let us help you navigate through the Criminal Justice System.
Every client is our priority, and we will work closely with you to put the best application forward for a Record Suspension.
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Is a record suspension the same as a pardon?
No, with a “Record Suspension”, your criminal record still exists, but it is sealed and inaccessible to the rest of the public, including your employers. In the case of a “Pardon”, your Canadian Criminal Record is completely erased.
How much does it cost for a record suspension in Canada?
Applying for a Record Suspension is an inexpensive process, however, this application needs to be completed correctly, right from the beginning. In addition to the legal fees, there is an application fee to the Government of Canada for $657.77.
Does a pardon show on a criminal record?
No, with a Pardon, your Canadian Criminal Record is completely erased.
How do you qualify for a pardon in Canada?
Pardon eligibility is met after all sentences have been completed and a waiting period of good conduct has been met. A sentence can be anything from a fine or probation to jail time.
Once you have completed your sentence the waiting periods to become eligible for a pardon are:
- Summary offenses – 5 years; and
- Indictable offenses – 10 years.
For matters that did not result in a conviction, there are certain waiting periods that must be met before the files can be destroyed. An Absolute Discharge will take 1 year, whereas a Conditional Discharge will take 3 years after the completion of your sentence.
How many times can you apply for a pardon?
If you received a pardon once and you commit another offense, the pardon will be revoked. You may apply for another pardon after 5 years from the completion of the sentence if it is a summary offense, and after 10 years from the completion of the sentence if it is an indictable offense.