The latest data shows that almost three million people have their names in the Canadian Criminal Database, the storage hub that includes information on those that have been arrested and found guilty of a crime in Canada. For millions of Canadians, this means there is a record of their charge within the database, a record that can impact their ability to travel, find work and even apply to live in a rental house.
Fortunately, Canadian law allows those who have been convicted of a criminal offence in the past but have proven their good conduct to remove their criminal records. In this post, we’ll look at how those in the Canadian Criminal Database can remove their names with a record suspension (previously known as pardon).
What is a Pardon/Record Suspension?
A record suspension (previously known as pardon) is a process that allows Canadians who have served their criminal sentence and demonstrated they are law-abiding citizens, to have their criminal record removed from the Canadian Criminal Database. An advantage of this process is that, because pardons are issued through the Canadian federal government, a search of police records won’t show that the person pardoned has a criminal record or that a pardon was issued. This means their names are removed completely from the database and their information won’t be available to those searching the database in future.
Several Important Elements to Consider
While the pardon process is designed to completely remove a person’s name from the database, it’s important that Canadians take several elements into consideration as they work through the pardon process.
The Challenges Involved
While a person may choose to begin the pardon process alone and without specialized help, there are a number of obstacles in their way. First and foremost is the complexity of the pardon process. There is a multitude of documents to source and to file. And one small error within the documentation for a pardon could prolong the process or even make the person ineligible for their pardon for a period of time. It’s why many Canadians now only work with trusted experts to begin the pardon process and to work on their behalf with the Canadian authorities to ensure the pardon is granted.
It takes an average of 12-to-24 months for the full pardon process to be completed, and the pardon to be granted. This means that it’s exceptionally important for Canadians to plan ahead and ensure they have completed the process if they require a pardon for work or for travel purposes in the future. This is also the reason why so many people now begin the pardon process well ahead of their eligibility date.
The Long-Term Benefits
The long-term benefits of achieving a pardon are a critical consideration at the beginning and throughout the process. While a person’s criminal record might not have adversely affected their life to this point, it may become a problem in the short-term future. A record may prevent you from achieving a promotion at work, entering the United States or purchasing a dream home. By beginning the process as soon as possible, you can reduce concerns for the future and regain lost freedom.
The pardon process can assure lasting peace of mind and help Canadians move forward and forget the mistakes of the past. While it can be a challenging process to take on, there are many experts that can provide guidance by completing the paperwork and working with the authorities on a person’s behalf. To learn more, contact our team directly and speak with one of our trusted experts.