What is a Permanent Resident? (and how do you become one in Canada)

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Permanent resident

A Permanent Resident is a foreign national who has been granted status by the Government of Canada, allowing them to immigrate to Canada.

Immigrants who have Permanent Residency are NOT Canadian citizens, and are citizens of other countries.

Visitors, international students and Overseas Filipino Workers OFWs are NOT Permanent Residents.




What is a Permanent Resident PR Card?

A Permanent Resident Card PR Card is a official government-issued document that shows your status in Canada.

If you are a Permanent Resident, and you leave Canada, you will need to show your PR Card and your Philippine passport when you return to Canada.

This includes trips by private vehicles, boats, trains, buses and airplanes. Every time you would like to enter Canada, and you have permanent residency, you will need to show your PR Card and Philippine passport (both of which needs to be valid).




What can Permanent Residents do in Canada?

Permanent Residents have the following rights:

  • have access to social benefits, including education and health care.
  • study, work and live anywhere they’d like in Canada
  • enjoy protection under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms

Permanent Residents must pay all taxes and be subject to all Canadian laws at the municipal, provincial and federal levels.




What can’t Permanent Residents do in Canada?

  • Permanent Residents can’t vote
  • Permanent Residents can’t run for public office
  • Permanent Residents can’t apply for certain jobs that require top-level security clearances




What are the requirements to keep your Permanent Residency status?

In order to keep your Permanent Residency Status, you have to be physically in Canada for at least 730 days in the past 5 years.

You don’t have to be in Canada for 730 straight days, was long as it was within the past 5 years.

If you do a lot of travelling, it’s a good idea to keep track of how long you’ve been in Canada.

Not only do you keep your PR Card valid, you also know when it’s time for you to apply for Canadian citizenship.




How can you lose your Permanent Resident Status?

You can lose your Permanent Resident Status for the following reasons:

  • if it is determined that you are not a Permanent Resident after an inquiry
  • if you voluntarily renounce your Permanent Residency Status
  • if you have been deported from Canada
  • after you have become a Canadian citizen




New changes to Impaired Driving and Cannabis-related Laws

Permanent Residents must be very careful when it comes to violating new Canadian impaired driving and Cannabis-related laws.

New impaired driving laws are now in effect, resulting in stiff penalties. If you are caught driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, you will lose your Permanent Resident Status and be deported from Canada.




What will happen if you renounce your Permanent Resident Status

Living in Canada is not for everyone. If you decide that you do not want to be a Permanent Resident of Canada any longer, you can apply to renounce your Permanent Resident Status.

You will lose all the rights and privileges of a Permanent Resident if you voluntarily renounce your Permanent Resident Status.

You will no longer be able to:

  • have access to social benefits, including education and health care.
  • study, work and live anywhere they’d like in Canada
  • enjoy protection under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms




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