I have an expired permanent resident card

It is important that Canadian permanent residents renew their permanent resident card (pr card) as soon as they notice it is about to expire. The general rule is to submit your application for renewal about two or three months before it expires because it will take about that same length of time to process. 

Your permanent resident card is an essential document that acts as a travel document when you travel outside of Canada and it allows you to return home. It will expire generally every five years.

How to renew your permanent resident card

In order to renew your permanent resident card after it expires:

1. You must fill out an Application for a Permanent Resident Card, also called form IMM5444. Do not leave any spaces blank, and make sure your writing is clear so that the immigration officer can read your application.

2. Include all of the additional forms required for your application, including the Supplementary Identification Form, the receipt for your application fee, copies of your identification and any copies of evidence that you’ve met the residence obligation.

3. Review your application with an immigration lawyer for the best results – this will ensure that you are not denied because of a mistake or missing components of your application.

What if I am not in Canada when my permanent resident card expires?

Sometimes, permanent residents are outside of Canada when their pr card’s expiry date is up. If this is the case, they are unable to return to Canada in order to renew their pr card. This is because it is actually the permanent resident card that gets you back into Canada. Since it is expired, you have no valid way of getting back into the country.

What you can do if you find yourself in this situation is to visit your closest Canadian consulate or office abroad, and apply for a travel document. You will still need to provide the right identification and supporting documentation when you apply for the travel document, as well as prove you have met the residency obligation.

If you are approved, you’ll have a travel document that will allow you to return to Canada where you can apply to renew your permanent resident card.

Any information provided here does not constitute legal advice and is intended for general information only. Should you require legal advise, you are encouraged to contact a lawyer directly. All blog postings are public and are not subject to solicitor/client confidentially. Case results depend on a variety of factors unique to each case, and case results do not guarantee or predict a similar result in any further case undertaken by the lawyer.