Can I travel and work in Canada and other countries with a dui on my record? 42 Answers as of July 28, 2011

I have a misdemeanor DUI on my record. My new job requires travel to Canada, Europe, and Japan. Will I have difficulties because of this? Is there any thing I can do to fix this?

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Jules N. Fiani, Attorney at Law
Jules N. Fiani, Attorney at Law | Jules Fiani
Yes, you will need to fill out a special form, though, to receive Canadian approval.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 7/28/2011
A.L.A. Law Group, LLP
A.L.A. Law Group, LLP | Lauren M. Mayfield
Most countries will permit you to enter with a misdemeanor but not a felony on your record, however Canada will not permit you into the country with a misdemeanor, including a DUI, on your record. If you have already been convicted of a DUI and you are finished with your probation you should see an attorney right away about filing a motion to expunge your record so the court deems you to have completed everything that was required of you and coverts your conviction to a dismissal, however, it is still visible to some agencies in background checks so Canada and other counties that don't allow you in because of a misdemeanor may still have a problem with the DUI on your record. If you have not yet completed probation you can still try to expunge your record but you will need to have completed all classes, paid the fines and completed a majority of your probation period so you can request early termination of probation based on employment and hardship reasons. If you are going to try to terminate probation early you should speak with a criminal defense attorney to ensure that you have completed everything you need to do before going into court on this motion.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 7/21/2011
Bloom Legal, LLC
Bloom Legal, LLC | Seth J. Bloom
As long as you do not currently have charges or court proceedings pending against you, a misdemeanor DWI conviction should not affect your ability to travel at all. To make sure that this is in fact the case, you may want to consider pursuing an expungement to have the item removed from your criminal record.
Answer Applies to: Louisiana
Replied: 7/20/2011
Smith & John
Smith & John | Kenneth Craig Smith, Jr.
Some countries, like Canada, will not allow entrance with a DWI conviction.
Answer Applies to: Louisiana
Replied: 7/20/2011
Osterman Law LLC
Osterman Law LLC | Mark D. Osterman
If its is your only, you can get a waiver. Check with the Canadian government for the forms to file and the fees to pay. If you fly, this is not an issue. If you drive through a border, it is because they do not like your driving and drinking habits.
Answer Applies to: Indiana
Replied: 7/20/2011
    Law Office of Mark Bruce
    Law Office of Mark Bruce | Mark Corwin Bruce
    This is a vague question. "Difficulties" could mean anything. Will they stop you at the border? Not unless there's a warrant out for your arrest. Can you drive anywhere with a DUI on your record? Unless your Cali license has been suspended, sure you can. If it has been suspended, most states will not issue you a new license until you clear up the Cali suspension. Will your employer do something to you because of the DUI? That's up to your employer.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/20/2011
    Law Office of Michael Brodsky
    Law Office of Michael Brodsky | Michael Brodsky
    Unfortunately, the answer is NO. However you may be able to apply for "rehabilitation" five years after your conviction. From the Citizenship and Immigration Canada Official Website: *Under Canadas Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA), if you have committed or been convicted of a crime, you may not be allowed to enter Canada. In other words, you may be "criminally inadmissible."* * * *This includes both minor and serious crimes, such as theft, assault, manslaughter, dangerous driving and driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. For a list of criminal offences in Canada, consult the Canadian Criminal Code. Note: there are other Acts of Parliament that a person can be convicted under, such as the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act.* * If you were convicted of a crime when you were under the age of 18, you may still be able to enter Canada.* *Please note that this is not legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. This post represents only the posters opinion. You should speak to an attorney for further information.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 7/20/2011
    Andersen Law PLLC
    Andersen Law PLLC | Craig Andersen
    That's not really a criminal law question. You would have to talk to the U.S. State Department or to the consular offices of each state to which you intend to travel. As for "doing something" about the DUI, you are out of luck. DUIs are forever in Washington State.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 7/20/2011
    Freeborn Law Offices, P.S.
    Freeborn Law Offices, P.S. | Steve Freeborn
    You should be ok because it is not a felony.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Timothy J. Thill P.C.
    Timothy J. Thill P.C. | Timothy J. Thill
    I doubt that a conviction for DUI will affect your status in a foreign country, but perhaps you should check with the embassies/consulates of the countries you intend to go to to be sure what their requirements are, and if such a conviction will prevent you from working in those countries.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Law Office of Joseph Schodowski
    Law Office of Joseph Schodowski | Joseph Schodowski
    To Whom it May Concern: The short answer to your question is yes. At least with respect to Canada. A DUI is a felony in Canada and because of this, it is an excludable offense under the Immigration Act. Anyone with a conviction in the United States that is treated as a felony or indictable offense in Canada is excludable from Canada, but even if the offense is not a felony or indictable offense in Canada, Customs and Immigration Officers have ultimate authority to permit and deny entry to Canada. You can apply for a waiver under the Rehabilitation for person who are inadmissible to Canada because of past criminal activity (IMM 5512).
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Jonathan S. Willett Attorney at Law
    Jonathan S. Willett Attorney at Law | Jonathan S. Willett
    Of those countries, Canada is the only one that would present a problem. There is a petition you can file. However, immigration law is not my area.
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Law Office of Phillip Weiser
    Law Office of Phillip Weiser | Phillip L. Weiser
    If you are on probation for the dui, you have to conform to the terms of your probation regarding travel restrictions. If the dui is an old one which you have served your sentence or probation and the case is closed, the conviction should pose no problems for travel.
    Answer Applies to: Kansas
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Apple Law Firm PLLC
    Apple Law Firm PLLC | David Goldman
    You will need to check with those countries about whether it is a problem or not. Generally, a valid US drivers license is all that is required.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Edward  D. Dowling IV Attorney at Law
    Edward D. Dowling IV Attorney at Law | Edward D. Dowling IV
    If the case is over and you are not on probation , unless there is a court order saying you can not leave the country , you should be able to travel any place you like. If you are on probation, then you will have to get permission from the probation department to travel out of the country.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Sharifi & Baron
    Sharifi & Baron | S. Yossof Sharifi
    No, Canada treats DUI's as a felony and many people are denied entry based on a DUI conviction. You need a good lawyer who understands how the international community treats DUI's. I have been successful in working out deals for my clients that won't impact their travel and I'm sure you can find a DUI attorney near you that can do the same.
    Answer Applies to: Utah
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Law Office of Andrew Subin
    Law Office of Andrew Subin | Andrew Subin
    Canada does enforce travel restrictions after a DUI.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Law Office of Thomas F. Mueller
    Law Office of Thomas F. Mueller | Thomas Mueller
    It is possible, but not likely the DUI will affect your travel. You will need to check with the representatives from each country to find out. The policies vary and change frequently. I believe the only problem you would have is a short conversation with immigration on the way in or out of the country.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Harden Law Offices
    Harden Law Offices | Leonard D. Harden
    The Canadian government will deny a person with a DWI entry. 5 years after the conviction you can petition the Canada that you are rehabilitated, 10 years after it is presumed you are rehabilitated. You can also seek special permission to enter but there is a steep fee and the waiting period is lengthy. The other countries you listed will not care about the DWI conviction. You can annul a DWI conviction in NH 10 years after everything is over.
    Answer Applies to: New Hampshire
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Law Office of Brendan M. Kelly
    Law Office of Brendan M. Kelly | Brendan M. Kelly
    You cannot travel to Canada for at least 5 years after you have fully completed all the sentence requirement of a DUI. It does not appear that travel to any other parts of the world will be impacted. More specific information will have to be gained from personal contact.
    Answer Applies to: Nebraska
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    LT Pepper Law
    LT Pepper Law | Luke T. Pepper
    There should not be a problem as it is a misdemeanor. Unless it was a felony there should not be an issue.
    Answer Applies to: Pennsylvania
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Law Office of Richard Williams
    Law Office of Richard Williams | Richard Williams
    There is nothing you can do to fix a record of a DUI conviction. There should be no travel restrictions on acount of a DUI conviction.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Laguzzi Law, P.C.
    Laguzzi Law, P.C. | Carina Laguzzi
    A potential collateral consequence of a DUI criminal record can include a temporary suspension of your driver's license, but it has no effect on your passport or your ability to travel internationally (unless you are on house arrest). Be sure to be honest about this conviction if you are asked about it on any forms. Other than that, if you already have the conviction there is not much you can do about it about now. Check with your attorney to ensure that it is in fact a conviction and you are not in a first offender program that would allow you to have the conviction expunged once you successfully complete said program. If you are within the allowable time line, you can also look into appealing the conviction. Please note that if you pled guilty, rather than going through a trial, your appellate rights have been severely limited.
    Answer Applies to: Pennsylvania
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Craig W. Elhart, P.C.
    Craig W. Elhart, P.C. | Craig Elhart
    Unless you are on probation with a condition being no travel outside of the state without court permission, the fact there is a DUI on your record should not affect your ability to travel.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Law Offices of Jacek W. Lentz
    Law Offices of Jacek W. Lentz | Jacek W. Lentz
    You will have a problem entering Canada for sure. Contact the Canadian consulate to find out what, if anything, you can do to prevent being turned away at the border.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Law Offices of John Carney
    Law Offices of John Carney | John Carney
    In order to enter Canada you are required to disclose your prior criminal record. You cannot enter Canada with a DWI conviction, but maybe with an Impaired infraction. You can apply from a "criminal rehabilitation" which is a lot of paperwork and is best done with the help of a Canadian immigration attorney.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Law Office of James A Schoenberger
    Law Office of James A Schoenberger | James A Schoenberger
    I'm not sure about Europe and Japan but Canada does not allow entry if you have a misdemeanor. Hopefully this DUI is old and you can expunge it. Three years must have passed from the completion of any terms, conditions and payment of fines associated with the DUI.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Attorney at Law
    Attorney at Law | Michael J. Kennedy
    Unless you are the American president, vice president, or secretary of defense, you are unwelcome in Canada with a DUI conviction, at least during the first ten years. You can apply to the Canadian consulate for admission and it will sometimes be given, most of the time not, until after the ten year point. Then you can occasionally get entry. Other countries are not a problem. There is an indication that Canada, which has lost a lot of tourist dollars with that policy, is in the process of rethinking it right now.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Cynthia Henley, Lawyer
    Cynthia Henley, Lawyer | Cynthia Henley
    You definitely will have trouble traveling to Canada at least. You should check their website. They consider DWI to be something akin to murder. You must have 5 years between the end of your punishment and the visit and you must submit paperwork (along with the fee - yes $) to allow them to find you to be rehabilitated. I kid you not. You will have zero trouble in Europe. I do not know about Japan. Check their websites.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Eric M. Mark, Attorney at Law
    Eric M. Mark, Attorney at Law | Eric Mark
    If you are a U.S. citizen you will not have any problem returning to the U.S. Whether you will have problems in other countries is a question that must be asked of lawyers in those countries.
    Answer Applies to: New Jersey
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh | Jeff Yeh
    No you cannot travel to Canada, where DUI is treated as a felony.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Fitzpatrick, Mariano, & Santos, PC
    Fitzpatrick, Mariano, & Santos, PC | Raymond J. Savoy
    A dwi does not prohibit travel. You have to inquire from the other countries any work restrictions
    Answer Applies to: Connecticut
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Law Office of Thomas A. Medford, Jr., PC
    Law Office of Thomas A. Medford, Jr., PC | Thomas A. Medford, Jr.
    Generally if you have a valid license from the jurisdiction where you live that should be sufficient for Canada. In regard to Europe if you can get a international driver's license, which I believe AAA can help you with that, it should take care of the situation. I do not know about Japan because the police can make deeper inquiries about a person's background than in most first world countries. I believe the key issue will be whether your driver's licensed is suspended or revoked by your home jurisdiction. If not you should be alright.
    Answer Applies to: District of Columbia
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Law Office of Jared Altman
    Law Office of Jared Altman | Jared Altman
    I don't expect that you will have any difficulties. Just be honest if the topic ever comes up.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Austin Legal Services, PLC
    Austin Legal Services, PLC | Jared Austin
    If you have no other convictions of any kind on your record and it's been at least five years, you can try to get it expunged. Other than that, you would have to discuss the matter with you employer to see what effect, if any, it will have on your employment.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Nichols Law Firm
    Nichols Law Firm | Michael J. Nichols
    Yes. You can not take a DUI on your record if that is the case. You will be prohibited from Canadian immigration for 10 years with early rehabilitation in 5.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Law Offices of Christopher Jackson
    Law Offices of Christopher Jackson | Christopher L. Jackson
    You should be able to but it depends on each individual company's policy. Good luck.
    Answer Applies to: Kentucky
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Lawrence Lewis
    Lawrence Lewis | Lawrence Lewis, PC
    People with convictions can travel, people on probation cannot. Whether it is a problem for you depends on your job. HOwever, you are not getting the DUI taken off of your record (expunged)
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Nelson & Lawless
    Nelson & Lawless | Terry Nelson
    That is up to those other countries visa and entry requirements. Check with their embassy. Some like Canada may deny entry to drivers crossing the border with DUI convictions, but you may be able to enter and travel as long as you are not driving in the country. Felony convictions may bar entry into many countries, misdemeanors less so. To help solve your long term problem, you can consider getting the conviction expunged; which would help in obtaining and keeping employment. Many convictions can be 'expunged' from criminal records by proper application and Petition to the court, but only if there was no felony prison time sentenced whether served or not, and if it was not for certain listed Sexual and Domestic Violence crimes, and if all terms of sentencing and at least one year of probation are completed, and if there are no new charges pending. If successful, the conviction would be retroactively withdrawn and the charges dismissed. Expungement does not clear, 'remove' or erase the conviction, but merely changes the record to show 'conviction reversed and dismissed by expungement'. When applying for a job in the private sector, you generally do not have to disclose a conviction if it was expunged. However, the conviction is still a 'prior' or 'strike' for purposes of repeat offense, and must be disclosed on any application for government and professional employment and licensing, bonding, security clearance, etc. The licensing agency and employer then can decide whether you are barred from licensing or employment because of the conviction. When you talk to the foreign embassy, discuss such expunged/dismissed convictions. If youre serious about doing this, and you think you qualify under those rules, feel free to contact me for the legal help you'll need.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    The Law Offices of Christopher J. McCann
    The Law Offices of Christopher J. McCann | Christopher J. McCann
    Yes. You will have difficulties getting into Canada especially unless you hold Canadian citizenship. There is an application process to obtain a waiver but it is difficult to obtain. You cannot currently be charged with a DUI, and you will have to be off of probation at the very least.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    Law Office of Joseph A. Katz
    Law Office of Joseph A. Katz | Joseph A. Katz
    To Whom It May Concern: You should have no trouble, as long as there is no bench warrant outstanding. If so, you will likely experience some real unpleasantness when you try to return across the border. Though there may not be any warrant, and a misdemeanor DUI conviction certainly should not cause you any immigration difficulties, you would be best served by hiring an experienced, competent Criminal Defense Attorney (ahem...) to file a 'Motion to Dismiss' for you. This will have a limited and proscribed benefit on your Department of Justice rap sheet. It should always be done after the term of probation expires.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/19/2011
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