Residency Obligations – What it means and how to meet them.

Congratulations! You just got your permanent residency.

Now, the question is, what are Residency Obligations? And how a Permanent Resident meets them?

As per Article no. 28 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act this means:

Inside Canada

A Permanent Resident must be physically present in Canada for at least 730 days (2 years in total) in every 5-year period. The latter is assessed on a sliding basis. Meaning, the calculation of residency days for a person who has been a Canadian permanent resident for more than five years will be limited to the five years immediately preceding the examination.

Persons who have been Canadian permanent residents for less than five years must demonstrate that they will be able to meet the residency requirement during the five-year period immediately following their becoming a Canadian permanent resident.

In other words, within a 5-year period, one can spend a total of up to 3 years outside of Canada.

Outside Canada

Another option to accumulate residency days if staying outside Canada for extended periods if you are in the following situations:

  • Travelling with a Canadian spouse/common-law partner
  • As a child under 19 years of age accompanying a Canadian parent
  • Employed on a full-time basis by a Canadian business or the Public Service of Canada and are assigned a position outside of Canada
  • The spouse, common-law partner or child of a permanent resident who is outside Canada and who is employed on a full-time basis by a Canadian business or the Public Service of Canada.

Another think to keep in mind is the importance of keeping the Permanent Residency card at all times when traveling as it is the only document that grants you re-entry to Canada. In case it is lost, the permanent resident must apply for a Travel Document to the nearest Immigration Office, which grants him a one time entry to Canada so he can apply for a new PR card.

Frequent travelers must keep a Travel Journal to help track their time in Canada.

Interested in knowing more about the subject? Kindly refer to the Government of Canada website here.

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