Canadian criminal laws are such that even a single DUI can prevent an individual from entering Canada. However, would such laws also apply to airline pilots and flight crew? In other words, could a pilot or a flight attendant be refused entry to Canada simply because a charge or conviction for a DUI (Driving Under the Influence), DWI (Driving While Intoxicated), or Reckless Driving appears on their record? After all, these professionals provide an important service, the operation of planes carrying passengers from anywhere in the world to Canada and they usually remain in Canada for only a few hours until their next scheduled flight takes place.
Despite the importance of the nature of their work, the fact remains that there are no exceptions for pilots and flight attendants who have a DUI on their record. They can still be denied entry into Canada, even if they only plan on staying in Canada for a couple of hours. Therefore, pilots, flight attendants and crew can be refused to enter Canada on the basis of having a DUI or another similar offense on their record and this regardless of whether they have actually been convicted, or only arrested thus far, with their case still pending in court.
This issue of being denied entry on the basis of having a DUI can also be problematic for the pilot’s employer and cause serious logistical issues. Airline companies being made aware last minute of a pilot’s inadmissibility issues will have to replace him or her with another pilot who can legally fly into the country. In order to minimize such logistical issues, many airline companies make it a prerequisite of any advertised pilot employment opportunity, that the selected candidate be able to fly to all destinations serviced by the company, which will usually imply being able to enter Canada.
Pilots or flight attendants with a DUI, DWI, or any other offense on their criminal record, must therefore take the necessary steps in order to ensure that they can enter Canada legally. One possible option is to apply for a temporary resident permit (TRP) which would allow them to enter Canada as often as required by their employer for a specific and pre-determined period of time. Another option, if the applicant is eligible and has completed all of the conditions of their sentence over 5 years ago, would be an application for criminal rehabilitation, which would remove inadmissibility permanently if approved.
Should you have any specific questions, we invite you to contact us by phone or by email. Contacting JTM Immigration means dealing directly with one of our immigration lawyers, who can advise you on various solutions as part of a free consultation.
Call us at 1-844-326-8410.