Inadmissible to Canada? (Grounds & How to Overcome Inadmissibility?)

“Inadmissible” person is the one who is not allowed to come or immigrate to Canada for reasons specified in Canada’s immigration law. Admissibility is one of many factors that is always assessed by a visa officer. A foreigner may be inadmissible to Canada for past criminal convictions, criminal charges, security reasons, health grounds, financial reasons, inadmissible family member or misrepresentation on the immigration application in the past. There are legal ways to overcome inadmissibility to Canada.

Who Are Inadmissible To Canada?

There are different grounds why a person can be refused entry to or removed from Canada, denied in an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA), or a visa. One of the main reasons for that is inadmissibility to Canada. Anyone can receive “inadmissible” status in Canada on any of these grounds:

Medical inadmissibility on health grounds

Medical inadmissibility to Canada may arise if a person’s condition is likely to put in danger public safety or public health or cause unnecessary demands on health or social services.  Learn more about medical inadmissibility to Canada and when it may be overcome here.

Inadmissibility to Canada on financial grounds

Applicants who are unwilling or unable to support financially themselves and their family members may be inadmissible to Canada on financial grounds. Some programs provide for a specific amount of funds that an applicant must prove to get a Canadian temporary or permanent residence visa.  

Criminally inadmissible for committing or been convicted of a crime in or outside Canada

If one committed or was convicted of a minor or serious crime, it can make a person inadmissible to Canada on criminal grounds.

This is including driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs, theft,  assault, manslaughter, dangerous driving, possession of or trafficking in drugs or controlled substances, money laundering, people smuggling, organized criminal activity, etc.

There are ways to overcome criminal inadmissibility through 1) criminal rehabilitation, 2) record suspension or discharge in Canada, or 3) applying for Canada temporary resident permit. Learn more about how to overcome criminal inadmissibility to Canada here.


Withholding information, giving false information, or sending false documents related to the immigration process is considered fraud under Canada's immigration law.  It will make a person inadmissible to Canada for misrepresentation. 

Misrepresentation can result in denial of entry, refusal of applications, loss of visitor or 

permanent resident status, revocation of citizenship and prosecution, immigration ban to enter Canada for 5 years, and removal from Canada.

If a misrepresentation was innocent and applicants honestly and reasonably believed that they were not withholding material information, inadmissibility may be overcome. Learn more about how to overcome inadmissibility for misrepresentation here.

Security reasons

Those include subversion, espionage, terrorism or violence, or taking part in an organization involved in such activities.

Human or international rights violations

Those include crimes against humanity, war crimes, subject to international sanctions. Also, they include government senior officials that took part in serious human rights violations.

Failure to fulfill any provision of IRPA or having an inadmissible family member.

How To Overcome Inadmissibility To Canada?

1) Apply For Temporary Resident Permit (TRP, IRPA, s. 24)

The Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA) allows persons who are inadmissible to Canada to apply for a temporary resident permit (TRP). If a TRP is granted, then an inadmissible person can enter or stay in Canada temporarily. Canada TRP can be granted only if it is justified in the circumstances, which makes it an exceptional discretionary measure. TRP may be valid from 1 day to 3 years and can be single-entry or multiple-entry. 

IRPA, s. 24

Temporary resident permit

24 (1) A foreign national who, in the opinion of an officer, is inadmissible or does not meet the requirements of this Act [Immigration and Refugee protection Act Of Canada] becomes a temporary resident if an officer is of the opinion that it is justified in the circumstances and issues a temporary resident permit, which may be cancelled at any time.

Learn more about Canada TRP here.

2) Request For Humanitarian & Compassionate Consideration (H&C, IRPA, s. 25)

A foreign national, whose application for a permanent residence was refused due to inadmissibility, may request an exemption on humanitarian and compassionate grounds. 

Relevant H&C  factors include, but are not limited to:

  • establishment in Canada
  • ties to Canada
  • the best interests of a child  directly affected by the H&C decision
  • factors in a country of origin (adverse country conditions)
  • health considerations including an inability of a country to provide medical treatment
  • family violence considerations;
  • consequences of the separation of relatives
  • inability to leave Canada has led to the establishment 
  • ability to establish in Canada
  • any unique or exceptional circumstances 

Learn more about H&C application here.

IRPA, s. 25

Humanitarian and compassionate considerations — Minister’s own initiative

25.1 (1) The Minister may, on the Minister’s own initiative, examine the circumstances concerning a foreign national who is inadmissible — other than under section 34, 35 or 37 — or who does not meet the requirements of this Act and may grant the foreign national permanent resident status or an exemption from any applicable criteria or obligations of this Act if the Minister is of the opinion that it is justified by humanitarian and compassionate considerations relating to the foreign national, taking into account the best interests of a child directly affected.

Public policy considerations

25.2 (1) The Minister may, in examining the circumstances concerning a foreign national who is inadmissible or who does not meet the requirements of this Act, grant that person permanent resident status or an exemption from any applicable criteria or obligations of this Act if the foreign national complies with any conditions imposed by the Minister and the Minister is of the opinion that it is justified by public policy considerations.

If you would like to know more about inadmissibility to Canada and how to overcome it, you may call +1-647-695-5256 or email or message us using the contact form below.

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