In order to enter the USA with a criminal record, you will usually need a US Entry Waiver. However, not every type of conviction requires a waiver, so if you have never been denied entry to the US, contact us first for a free consultation before applying.
How to get a US Entry Waiver
Certified Criminal Record check
First, you will need to get your fingerprints taken for the purpose of a waiver. This will allow you to get your certified criminal record from the RCMP. The RCMP requires your fingerprints to access the national database of criminal records. This helps to ensure that there are no instances of mistaken identity and the proper record is released.
If you are doing the application yourself or working with a company other than AllCleared, you will need to wait for the record to come back before you can get your court documents.
If you have a criminal record, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) requires a “letter of circumstances.” This explains what happened that led to you committing a criminal offence. You will also talk about how you have changed and include information about why you want to travel to the US. For example, you may want to travel to:
- See family members
- Attend a conference
- Take the kids to Disney
- Stopover in the US on your way to other places
Whatever the reason is, the government wants to know that you have a valid reason for visiting and are not likely to overstay.
Other documents you may require are:
- Letters of reference
- Proof of employment or income if you are retired or self-employed
- Drug tests if applicable
- Proof of citizenship
For Canadians with criminal records, the appropriate forms are the I-192 Form and the G-325A Form.
How to apply
Once you have gathered all the documents for your application, you need to attend a land border crossing or international airport. There you will submit the package and your $585 USD application in person to a US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officer. Not all international airports and land crossings have the ability to accept your application.
If you work with us, we will provide you with a list, or you can get it from the CBP website.
You should call before you go. They may require you to make an appointment. The officer you speak to will not be making the decision on your application. He or she will forward it to the DHS for a decision which usually takes four to eight months, but can take up to a year.
AllCleared is here to walk you through the process and to ensure that all steps are met. Don’t risk a denied application due to missed steps or inadequate information. Contact AllCleared for a free consultation on how we can help you enter the US with a criminal record at 1-866-972-7366.