If you have been outside Canada for more than 730 days out of the past 5 years, you may still be able to renew your PR card from outside Canada.
There are several exemptions to the physical presence requirement of spending 730 days in Canada for maintaining PR status. If you fall under one of these exemptions, you can still renew your PR card.
Outside Canada with a Canadian Spouse
If you are married to or in a common-law relationship with a Canadian citizen and you have been with them while outside Canada, then this time counts toward the PR residency requirement just as if you have been inside Canada.
In this situation, you can even live outside Canada fulltime and continue to meet the residence requirement to continue being a permanent resident of Canada indefinitely.
While time spent outside Canada with a Canadian spouse or common-law partner does allow you to meet the PR residency requirement, it does not allow you to meet the requirements to become a Canadian citizen – you must be physically present in Canada for the minimum amount of time to become a Canadian citizen.
Outside Canada While Working For a Canadian Business or Government
If you work fulltime for a Canadian business or Canadian government entity and have been sent outside Canada as part of your regular job duties with them, then this time counts toward your PR residency requirement.
In order to fall under this exemption, the Canadian business that you work for must meet several requirements, such as having Canadian employees, being headquartered in Canada, and being engaged in turning a profit. The business cannot exist solely for the purpose of allowing you to continue to meet the PR residency requirement.
If your spouse is also a permanent resident of Canada, and they are working for a Canadian business or government outside Canada as described above, time you spent accompanying them outside Canada also counts toward your own PR residency requirement.
Accompanying a Canadian Citizen Parent (Children Under 18 Only)
In the case of children aged 17 or under who are permanent residents of Canada, time spent outside Canada with a parent who is a Canadian citizen counts toward their residency requirement.
However, the same does not apply for a parent who is a Canadian permanent resident outside Canada with a child who is a Canadian citizen.
Renewing Your PR Card With More Than 730 Days Outside Canada
If you have spent more than 730 days outside Canada, the application that you submit to renew your PR card will not be the same as someone who has been physically present in Canada. You must demonstrate that you fall under one of these exemptions, and you have to prove this with documentation. These applications contain much more documentation than the usual PR card application.
Our office specializes in PR applications submitted from outside Canada. Our consultants have over 10 years’ experience in this area and have helped hundreds of clients who reside outside Canada renew their PR cards.
PR Card Application Refusal
If an application for a PR card is refused, then the applicant will have to undergo a residency determination. If a negative decision is made on a residency determination, the applicant will lose their status as a permanent resident. If the applicant is inside Canada at that time, a removal order will be issued for the applicant to be forced to leave Canada.
For these reasons, it is extremely important not to submit an application for a PR card or PR Travel Document without the necessary additional information and supporting documents.
PR Card Renewal With Humanitarian and Compassionate Considerations
If you do not meet any of the above exemptions to the requirement to be physically present in Canada for 730 days out of the last 5 years to renew your PR card, you may still be able to renew your PR card on Humanitarian and Compassionate (H&C) grounds.
Some common reasons for H&C consideration for PR card renewal include serious illness outside Canada, illness or death of a family member outside Canada, and best interest of a child. Please refer to our page about PR card renewal on H&C grounds for more information.
Contact us if you want to renew your PR card but have been outside Canada for more than 730 days in the past 5 years.
Our professional fees for renewing a PR card from outside Canada typically range from $1400 – $3000 depending on the circumstances of the case.