The Truth About Bill C23-B and Record Suspensions

By April 29, 2011 Pardon 102 Comments

Contrary to some insincere sales tactics by some of our competitors Bill C23-B was never going to mean the end of pardons. So I would like to clear the air about what is real and what is not real concerning this Bill and Canada’s pardon program. The following points should help clarify a few things for those of you trying to make an educated decision about what pardon service you would like to hire.

Bill C23-B was never going to mean the end of pardons. It would have increased the waiting period for eligibility and it would have renamed the term Canadian pardon to record suspension. But it would all amount to the same thing. Your record would be removed and kept separate and apart from active criminal records.

Bill C23-B would have eliminated pardons (or records suspensions, call it whatever you like) for some serious offenders, particularly sexual offenders involving youth. But for the vast majority of crimes committed in Canada it would have been business as usual.

Bill C23-B is effectively dead following the election. If we end up with a Conservative majority government the Tories have pledged to write a single, sweeping crime bill. The measures in C23-B will certainly be included. Without a Conservative majority it is unlikely that the Bill will pass without significant modification.

No pardons services provider can offer you a grandfather clause. I have spoken to several people who were promised this if they signed up with company X right away. So let me make this clear. Your application must be complete, correct and submitted to the Parole Board of Canada in order to be assured that it will be reviewed based on the current rules. If it is not submitted by the time the rules change (if they change, and that is a big if right now) then your application will be reviewed based on the new rules.

If you have any questions about Bill C23-B or feel you were misled by another company I would be happy to hear from you. I know what I am talking about as I was involved in the process. I was invited to speak at the Standing Committee on Public Safety and National Security in Ottawa. I was questioned by members of all political parties.


It has certainly been an interesting process but unfortunately I can’t help believing that Bill C23-B was purely political posturing. The fact that some pardon services are profiting from people’s ignorance of the bill makes it a messy affair indeed.

All we can hope for at this point is that the Conservatives do not get a majority and the bill dies with the election results. But I am far from confident. The Conservatives are very dedicated to their crime agenda and I don’t think this is the last we have heard about amendments to restrict Canada’s pardon program.

About Michael Ashby

Michael Ashby is Co-Founder and Communications Director for the National Pardon Centre. Get in touch with Michael by sending an email to or calling extension 227.Michael Ashby est le co-fondateur et le directeur des communications au Centre du Pardon national. Contactez Michael par email au ou par téléphone au poste 227.


  • john billings says:

    I have a pot possession charge from 26 years ago. With the conservatives getting a majority government, will bill C23-B affect my chances of a pardon.

    Thank You,
    John Billings

  • Hi John, A single possession charge is not currently on the radar. That being said you never know what will happen. This legislation is more an ideological agenda than sensible crime policy based on evidence. I would, therefore, suggest getting a pardon underway.

  • chris says:

    Hi Michael,

    My pardon application is currently being handled by a pardon agency. 2/3rds of the applicaiton is completed. They are only waiting for the local police checks. I have a summary conviction. Do you think my application will be submitted before the law passes and secondly, will they be increasing the elgibility period from 3- 5yrs for summary convictions?

  • Hi Chris, If it were a file in my office I would be quite confident that it woud be in on time. Of course we can never know for sure. As for eligiblity if the pardon section of the bill is not emended the 3 year wait will certainly be changed to 5 years. Best luck. I hope it is submitted on time.

  • Brandon says:

    Hey if the date for my eligibility comes up in 2016 (I just finished 3 years of probation) can I still get the application started now?

  • Hi Brandon. You can always start the process early. But the eligiblity date will not change. The advantage is that we would be the ones monitoring your case and you would not have to worry about it. If you would like to get a file started I would be happy to help. The easiest way is only by clicking the link below or copying to your browser.

    Kind regards,

  • Cris says:

    Hi Michael
    My pardon application is currently being handled by a pardon agency as well
    I’ve been told it was sent to the board back in June
    if its already been submitted can it be affected by the new rules when they kick in?
    and how long do does the PB normally take to process an application?

  • If it is done correctly you are grandfathered in and no legislative change will affect you. That is our understanding at any rate. At the moment the Parole Board is taking up to several months to process a pardon. It is extremely backed up.

  • Cris says:

    sorry Michael could you be more specific
    roughly how many months is several
    and what do you mean by done correctly?
    any information is great appreciated
    Thanks Again

  • Hi Cris,

    I am sorry but it isn’t really possibel to be more specific. The Parole Board is taking anywhere from 2 months to 16 to process a pardon. We just don’t know what is going on there at the moment. As for done correctly that means that no mistakes were made and no information was left out. I hope that helps. Best regards, Michael.

  • Cris says:

    ok thanks
    the 3rd party I used told me the whole process would take 4-6 months
    if I payed extra for the express option,which I did.

    It seems to me they have no control over how long it takes
    at least when it gets to the PB,

    its been over year now (4 months since documents submitted to PB so I’m told)
    and I still waiting..


  • I have a pretty good idea which company you used. 6 months is not a realistic time frame right now. At the moment we are quoting 8 – 12 months for an expedited file and even then we try to make it clear that the Parole Board is going through considerable changes and is very backed up. Basically none of the procesing services like mine have any control over time frames. That being said some of us are more honest when it comes to providing estimates. the amount of time it takes is such a strong selling point for so many clients that it becomes very tempting for some of the smaller guys to bend the truth a bit. We try to be very straight forward with people but I have to admit that even we have some clients who get frustrated when things take longer than they should. But again, 6 month is just not realistic under the current circumstances. The company I think you used claims to guarantee the fastest service possible and this is just not something it is possible to guarantee.

  • Mathieu says:


    I have a question. My probation for my summerable offense ends in December 2012. At that point I believe I have to wait three years to make application for a pardon. I called a pardon agency and they said if I started the process now that my file would be grandfathered in even if there are changes in the bill in the next couple years. They insisted on confirming this was true and it was under a grandfather clause. Could you please specify and perhaps with some facts if this is true? Thank you for your time.

  • Hi Mathieu,

    It is absolutely not true and a clear case of fraud. I would appreciate if you would reply and leave the name of the company in question as I have heard this tactic used with several other people making the same complaint. The grandfather clause would only apply if your file was complete and submitted to the Parole Board of Canada. In that case even if the application had not yet been reviewed and granted by the time the bill passes it would still be processed under the old rules.

  • Celia says:

    Hi Michael. Could you advise the best way to go about obtaining your criminal records to ensure that your information is accurate and complete (i.e. inclusive of the last date of sentence for your last conviction) on your pardons application, please? Thank you so much.

    N.B. Could you only use my first name in the reply, please. Thank you.

  • Hi Celia,

    The only way to get your criminal record for a pardon application is by certifying fingerprints with the RCMP. We handle that service at all of our locations if you are planning to prepare your own pardon application. Please let me know if you have other questions.

    Kind regards,

  • Mathieu says:

    Hi ! Thx for the quick response. The company name is pardon services canada I believe. And they claim to be the oldest and one of the first pardon services company out there. The name of the gentleman I spoke to is Vincent. And the number is 1866 972 7366. Extension 7022. He insisted on saying that the other companies don’t know of this clause and he is apparently guaranteeing me that it will be processed under the old rules if the new bill is passed. If u investigate, plc let me know on the progress. 🙂

  • Hi Mathieu,

    Thank you for the information. I am surprised that this company is using this sales tactic. At any rate you have the correct information now and can make an informed decision.


  • Mathieu says:

    I was reading the PDF file of the bill and on page 16 or so there’s a section called ” transitional” I believe, and in there they say something about applying and the date of the offense being before the date that the bill has passed. But I don’t really understand the wording. Could you possibly clarify? And thank you for ur help

  • I am fairly confident it refers to the date that the file is “submitted” to the parole board and not the date you sign up with a serivce provider. However, after a reread the transitional provisions do not even apply to the pardons section. You may want to have someone at the Parole Board clarify this for you as it is possible they aren’t even sure how this will work. Our undesrstanding has been that so long as the file was received it is under the old rules. It would make no sense to have it be the day you sign up with the service provider. If it worked that way I could sign somone up who was still in jail (as an example) and he/she would be grandfathered under the 5 year waiting period instead of 10. Something tells me the Tories wouldn’t go for that. You can email the Parole Board for yourself if you like and you may get a straight forward answer.

  • Dani says:

    My father had a sexual charge against him in 1996, from an 18 year old family member. And unfortunately he refused to make her appear in court and simply pleaded guilty and served 6 months. His whole term would have been up in 2007. He has never applied for a pardon. As she was 18, she was not a minor, so does this new bill affect his chance of a pardon? I have read the PDF file of the bill, and it only specifies “sexual offence on youth”.

  • Birgit Davidson says:

    Hi Dani,

    As long as the victim was over the age of 18 at the time of the offence, your father would not be affected by the portion of Bill C10 that would eliminate pardons for sexual offences against minors.

    Your father may, however, be affected by the extended eligibility wait periods that the bill would enact. The bill was passed in the House of Commons but has not yet received Royal Assent (come into force) which could take another few months. If you father starts his pardon now, there is a chance that we could get his pardon submitted before the new rules come into effect.


  • Dani says:

    Thanks Birgit. I don’t understand how the new extended wait periods would affect him though, as it has already been over 10 years. If they extend from 3-5, or 5-10, he would still be ok – wouldn’t he? It has been 14 years.

  • Birgit Davidson says:

    Hi Dani,

    You mentioned that his sentence expired in 2007… the end of the sentence is when the 3, 5, or 10 year wait period begins…

    Please let me know if you require any further clarification.


  • Dani says:

    Sorry Birgit, my fault i typed the wrong year. The charge was 1996, and sentence completed in 1997. so that is why I said it has been 14 years.

  • Birgit Davidson says:

    Hi Dani,

    If it was 1997 then he should not be affected by any legislative changes. Please feel free to contact me at 866-242-2411 x 106 if you would like to open a file!


  • Dee says:


    My son started the process of applying for his pardon in Feb 2011, he sent his prints to the RCMP by registered mail , he just received he reply October 2011.

    Is that a normal time frame?


  • Hi Jackie,

    That is definitely on the long side of the time frames at the moment but it is not something we haven’t experienced ourselves. I would assume you submitted ink fingerprints which take longer to process than electronic submissions. If you have any other questions please let me know.


  • jhn says:

    If we all grew cannabis we would all have cheap acces to a medecine that can be cooked from hemp, a cure-alll for cancer, diabetes, aids,aids drugs, chemo and radiation treatment, and much more! Every weed plant thrown out is one less batch of life saving medecine and natural pain killer. If we grew weed everywhere pharma corps would be out of their profits to some extent, thus keeping it illegal, price high, fear high. How can a plant be illegal? This is medical genocide. Search Rick Simpson Runfrom the cure and pheonix tears website for yourself!

  • Tanya says:

    Hi there Michael. I was just surfing along getting any kind of information re: getting a pardon for my fiance. When he was younger he was a bit of a bad boy. He was convicted and jailed for a year on assult charges and theft 30 years ago. Now that he wants to travel, we have to get a pardon. I’ve been doing quite a bit of research and decided to take a break and head back to my Facebook page and noticed an add about bill C-23. I tried to click on it and it ended up being a virus but in either case, it got me intrigued. I started my search again and fell upon your website. I notice most of these msg’s are from 2011 so I’m curious to hear what your take is on the bill and what suggestion you might have for me whilst starting on this application and also how it may affect my fiance’s case? I realize that you provide this service but I’m a willing and interested participant and would like to see this through.


  • Birgit Davidson says:

    Hi Tanya,

    Michael is out of the office and has asked me to reply on his behalf. A bit of background first:

    As we know, the Conservatives did, indeed, secure a majority government and so are plowing forward with their “tough on crime” election promises. Bill C23B is dead but the amendments that it proposed have been incorporated into Bill C10 (also known as the Safer Streets and Communities Act or the Omnibus Crime Bill). Despite our best lobbying efforts, C10 is alive and well and was passed in the House of Commons just before Christmas. Currently, it is under review by a Senate committee and has received it’s second reading. It hasn’t become law yet but it seems that this will happen in the very near future.
    The good news (if there is any) is that if this law passes, only a relatively small number of people will be affected by it. From what you have told me in your post, your fiance should not be affected by C10 even if it does pass. The Bill threatens to eliminate pardons for people who have served more than 3 2-or-more-year sentences so as long as that is not the case for your fiance, he should be fine.

    Please feel free to contact me for additional info!


  • Tanya says:

    Thank you for your information Birgit! This really helps me to understand which direct I need to proceed. I will most definitely contact you should I have further questions.


  • Noah says:

    pardons waivers claims “Canadian Government has introduced a new legislation (called “Bill C-23″). Once this bill is approved, most Canadians with Criminal Record will never be eligible for a Pardon.” You say the Bill is dead, is it? Because the folks at pardons waiver think I will not be able to get a pardon, I do NOT have any serious or sexual offences at all.

  • Hi noah,

    Bill C-23 B was dead but has been resurrected as a part of the omnibus crime bill. The company you mention has something to gain by giving you false information which is that you will not be able to get a pardon. But even if the bill passes you will, by the sounds of it, still be eligible for a record suspension which is essentially the exact same thing.
    Best regards,

  • Lynsay says:

    Hello Michael,
    I am currently waiting for local police record checks and will complete the pardon application process by myself. I have just spoken to an organization that informed me that a record suspension means the record is still accessible and not sealed. I was also told that pardons are quite often refused for things such as incorrect spelling as well as “many other very small simple things”, but could not elaborate. What are the main concerns I should have if I am applying for a pardon without any pardon or waiver company involved? The offence was 1996 and not sex related, I recieved a susp. sentance.
    *Wanted to mention also that it took from Feb 2011 to end of Jan 2012 to get a reply from the R.C.M.P.* how long typically does it take to get a response for the clemency and parole board?
    Respectfully yours,

  • Hi Lynsay,

    While it is true that the Parole Board can be quite difficult and meticulous the claim that a record suspension is any different from a pardon is sheer fraud. Most likely you spoke to a sales rep from one of our competitors who earns a commission for each sale. Unfortunately this provides an obvious incentive to bend the truth and we are receiving a lot of complaints of this nature lately. I would be curious to know what company it was you spoke to although I think I have a pretty good idea. The RCMP response time is quite long but not entirely unusual, especially if you submitted ink based fingerprints. As for doing the application on your own I can only suggest you follow the steps very closely, if so you should be fine.

    Best regards,

  • Mike says:


    I was convicted of production of cannabis, but nothing else, the charges of intent to sell were dropped, I received a 3 month house arrest which ended in March 2007, so my 5 year waiting period is up March 2012, will I be eligible for a pardon, and upon getting a pardon, will I be able to safely travel to the US and other countries?

    Thanks in advance

  • HI Mike,

    It sounds to me like you might be one of those cases where you are eligible for a pardon but if the new crime bill passes you may end up having to wait a much longer time. It would depend if the offence was summary or indictable. I would suggest getting a pardon going ASAP in the hopes it can be submitted to the Parole Board beofre the law changes in which case the new legislation would not affect you. Feel free to give me a call if you want to discuss things further.

    Best regards,

    Michael ext. 227

  • mikeo says:

    thax for the info michael, if you need a pardon this guy seems to know his stuff l went with another company and got scewed cheers

  • Mike says:

    my charge was indictable

  • So unfortunatley if it was an indictable charge and the bill passes in its current form the waiting period will be extended to 10 years. Somehow this is supposed to keep us safer.

  • Shaun says:

    Hey Michael. I was convicted with a summary offence in 2008 I committed the crime 2007. But I had 14 months probation so I am eligible at the end of this year. Is this new bill going to really mess up my chances of getting a pardon? What can I do? I wrote a letter to my local MP telling him not to vote for this bill. I heard it will have to go through several steps even if its passed and will take a while to come into affect is this true?

  • Hi Shaun,

    There is really not much you can do that you haven’t already. You have two choices. Wait and see what happens with the bill or start your application ASAP and hope it gets submitted before the laws change. Other than that there isn’t any advice anyone can give. It’s really just your call.

  • Cory says:

    Hi Micheal

    I was convicted of possession with the intent to traffic some 15 years ago, I have not had a single charge since then. I am wondering if I would qualify for a pardon as it was an indictable offense?

  • Lisa says:

    Hie I have a question I only spent two weeks in jail and I pleaded guilty without knowing what im pleading guilty to.Anyway they charged me with conspirancy to commit an indictable offence and 21/2 years probation ending this year in June.. when will I be eligible to apply and will the new bill affect me?

  • Birgit Davidson says:

    Hi Cory,

    As long as any fines or resitutions have been settled, you should be eligible to apply for a pardon right now.



  • Birgit Davidson says:

    Hi Lisa,

    Under current legislation, you will be eligible for your pardon in June 2017. If C10 passes, you would be eligible in June 2022.



  • HI Mike,

    It shouldn’t. Provied you don’t ahve sexual offences involving children and you don’t have a total of 4 or more indictable charges in which more a than 2 years jail sentence was received for each I think you will be ok. We’d be happy to prepare your application if you decide to finally put this behind you. The big red button at the top will direct you to our application online. Best regards,

  • Amy says:

    Hello, I am a Canadian citizen living in the U.S. with my U.S. citizen husband. He recieved a DUI in 2007 in the U.S. We would like to move back to Canada eventually. We were told that we would have to wait until June 2013 to apply for a pardon. Would this new Bill affect his chances for a pardon? If so, should (or can) we be applying for a pardon now?

  • Birgit Davidson says:

    Hi Amy,

    Your husband cannot apply for a pardon for an American conviction. He may be able to expunge the record through the courts and/ or police but the US doesn’t have the same pardon system in place as we do here in Canada. You should speak with Citizenship and Immigration Canada about your options:



  • Kristen says:

    Hi Michael,

    My boyfriend’s probation for a summary offence ended April 15, 2009 which means he is eligible to apply for a pardon as of April of this year. Now with Bill C10, that will extend his eligibility to 2014 correct? Are we able to start the process now even though we still have 3 weeks til April 15th? The application has to be submitted to the parole bd before this law is enforced in order to qualify under the old rules right, but your time for the application process is 8-10 months?? Just trying to get a grasp on whether this will be possible or not. Thanks

  • Michael says:

    Hi Kristen,

    I do suggest getting the pardon started now but your boyfriend will be processed under the new rules since they are already in place. Getting a file going two years in advance is not a bad idea though. If you decide to prceed early be sure to only choose our standard service option since the expedited will not be necessary. If you have any other questions please let me know.

    Kind regards,

    • Kristen says:

      Thanks for your quick response Michael. Wow, disappointing and I apologize for taking up your time as I didn’t even realize the bill was completely through yet….but will definitely be in contact when we start the process. Thanks again.

      • Michael says:

        It’s my pleasure. Don’t be afriad to ask questions about this crime bill. It’s pretty much been my job for the past year or so.

        • Shauna says:

          My question is my husband’s eligibility was on February 22, 2012…the application was not sent to the Parole board as yet….will the new Bill have him wait another 5yrs? his was indictable offence…Feeling so stressed right now…

  • Birgit Davidson says:

    Hi Shauna,

    Unfortunately, if the application was not received by the Parole Board before the 13th of March, he will have to wait another 2 or 5 years before becoming eligible depending on whether the offence was summary or indictable.


  • Shauna says:

    It was indictable…so then he will have to wait 5years right? Do you know if they will amend this law? gosh why couldn’t add 1, 2, or 3yrs more…but 5….what a pain….so now he have to wait 5more which bumps it to 2017….what a government

  • Birgit Davidson says:

    Hi Shauna,

    Unfortunately there are no plans to amend this law anytime soon. All we can do for the time being is wait…


  • C.J. says:

    I’m not sure when the “eligible” date is…my husband’s record is over a decade old. How do I find out what date he is eligible for a pardon? Was also wondering, how useful is a pardon really? We were told that some places can still see your record after you have a pardon.

    • Hi Cj,

      If the charge is over ten years old the chances are he is eligible now. The way it works is you count either 5 or 10 years from the day the sentence was completed to determine eligibility. If you would like to tell me the offence I can let you know if it is 5 or 10 although depending on the sentence it may not even matter.


  • C.J. says:

    It was having a concealed weapon. And some failure to appears. I believe there was also fraud under $5000 earlier on, more like 13/14 years ago.

    • Hi AGain,

      It’s a tough call since all of those are hybrid offences meaning the crown could have proceeded by summary or by indictment. At any rate if the charges are over a decade old then depending on the sentences he is eiher eligible now or will be before too long. And it’s never a bad idea to get a pardon started early. Unfortunately with those charges I just can’t say for sure without seeing court records.


  • Dave says:

    Hello Michael,

    I was charged with trafficking in 1985. Before 911, I had crossed the border several times without incident. A few times, I was rejected entrance when they ran my name. Am I correct in assuming that a pardon would not benefit any desire to cross the border in the future, since it does not erase my name from the American data base. Is there any hope of me travelling to the States ever again…..legally? Thank you for the informative service you are providing.


  • Birgit Davidson says:

    Hi Dave,

    Mike is out of the office today and asked me to reply on his behalf.

    You are correct in that a pardon will not allow you to cross the border. You require a US entry waiver in order to travel to the United States legally. Given the age of your conviction, I think you are an excelent candidate for a waiver.

    Please do not hesitate to contact me at toll-free 1-866-242-2411 if you require additional info or if you would like to open a file!


  • Mitch Smythe says:

    I was convicted of Possession of a narcotic & possession of a restricted drug in the late 80’s I think it was 86 or 87. I applied for a Pardon in 1992, and paid $2500. I received all my paper work about 6 weeks later. in the years since obtaining my “pardon” I have since lost all my paper work (most of it was on my boat when it sank in 1998). Any ways, 2007 when the Bush Admin closed the border, I went to cross and my DL was flagged. I was taken into the Security Station, and I was informed then, that they had full access to my criminal record past. I found out the hard way, that I dont have a Pardon, and I have never been entered into the system for a pardon. I haven’t tried to cross into the US since. As I was told that if I try, I will go to a US prison, and I’ll be deported, and never be allowed entry ever again.

    I have researched Waivers, and I have talked to lawyers about obtaining a Waiver, they’re not easy to get, and the US Government loves to play the “money game” in handing them out.

  • Birgit Davidson says:

    Hi Mitch,

    I would be absolutely shocked if Homeland Security didn’t grant you a waiver for a 25 year old possession charge. We have thousands of clients who are getting waivers for similar convictions.

    Give me a call so we can discuss the details of your case (we can chat about actually getting that pardon for you too while we are at it).

    Birgit 1-866-242-2411 x 106

  • Elaine Tenborg says:

    I was convicted of impaired driving about thirty years ago.
    I have since entered the US many times, even flying to Hawaii.

    Now that they require a passport, do I ask for a pardon, or will I be flagged?
    My Mother has recently passed away and my brother is taking her ashes to Hawaii to be with our Dad’s. I would like to go as well, but I don’t want to be stopped at the last minute and told I can’t go.
    Thanks for your time.

  • Michael says:

    DUI is an admissable offence to the Americans but you might want to consider travelling with some sort of documentation to prove the nature of the offence. Of course the better solution is to get a pardon so that the issue just never comes up.

  • Elaine T says:

    Thanks Michael.
    Where do I go to get the papers to start the pardon proceedings? And can you give me some sort of time frame as to how long the entire procedure takes. I understand there are variables, but just a generalization would be good. Two months? Six months?
    Again, thanks for your time.

  • HI Elaine,

    If you click the red button at the top of the page you can easily apply on our website. the average time frame for an expedited pardon at the moment is 1 year. Also, unless you doni’t care I will remove your last name from the comments since most people prefer to stay anonymous in this particular forum.

  • Gunnar says:

    Hi Michael,
    I read through the body of your index page and believe it is a bit dated.

    I was eligible to apply for a pardon on 11 March of this year. I had my finger prints from the RCMP, police records and the 2011 forms completed. I was shocked to see the cost up by over 400%.

    But family and friends, having seen me squeaky clean and and well meaning for the last five years, lent me the extra $500 so that I could send off the completed application.

    Just one call to Pardons Canada to make sure everything was in order. That’s when I found out that, no, I am not eligible. I have to wait another five years (and who knows what the deal is going to be then?). There is no way around having to wait an additional five years given my story, right?

    Please, anyone, share petitions, contact details for political action, dates of events such as public demonstrations. Pls send this info to gavroche1963 “at”

    Bill C23 paints all criminals with the same brush. It will increase the cost of social services (people who can’t get hired go on OW, right) and the building and maintenance of prisons. We will see more and more hardened criminals thinking “what have I got to lose”. This Bill does not reflect much foreword thinking.

    What’s next? Mandatory tattoos on the foreheads of criminals?

  • Hi Gunnar,

    Thank you for sharing your story. I agree the new laws are ridiculous. FYI, the post you read was a blog entry from over a year ago so it will definitely appear dated. At any rate there was an enormouse amount of energy put into derailing this bill but now that it has passed nothing short of a charter challenge will change anything. At the moment I know of no one with the necessary resources considering it.

    Wish I had better news for you.


  • Chris says:

    Hi Michael.

    I began collecting the paperwork for my pardon application in the Fall of 2011. As of then, I was eligible for a pardon as it had been five years since I completed my sentence for a robbery charge. Has this changed? Is it now ten years? Who could I call to verify?

    I was just waiting to get my final police clearance form before sending it all in.

    Thanks for your help,


    • Michael says:

      Hi Chris,

      If it is an indactable offence which it must be if your waiting period was 5 years then you are unfortunately going to be under the 10 year waiting period now. I wish I had better news.


  • Zack says:

    Hi. I received a pardon about 7-8 years ago for a theft charge in the 80s. I didn’t use any agency. I just did all the paperwork myself and every time I wrote one branch of government I was told to write and send money to another branch. It got sorted eventually, but my question is, is there any way for me to easily confirm that my record was expunged? Last time I was stopped by police I said I’d never been arrested and they called in my info and then let me go so I think it’s all good but I’d like to confirm it.

    • Michael says:

      Hi Zack,

      If you live near one of our offices come by and do a background check. If it comes back clean, which it should, you will know that your record was removed.


  • Sheryl says:

    I was charged in 1987 for fraud, I only got 6 months probation and no fine. how do I know if it was a conditional sentence or not. I can’t remember it was over 25 years ago. I read somewhere that I could get a file destruction.

  • Birgit Davidson says:

    Hi Sheryl,

    We would have to confirm with the courts to see whether this was a discharge or a conviction. Either way, becuase it happened before 1992, it would still be showing on your criminal record right now unless you apply to have it destroyed so I strongly suggest you take action.

    Please let me know if you would like to open a file.


  • joe says:

    I was charged with a DUI Summary offence. I plead guilty and paid over $10,000 dollars in legal fees, driver education, fines, and the ridiculous blow box, not to mention ICBC nailed me for $3000 extra in the end for being a reckless driver. Now I finish my 3 years and I’m told that I have to wait 2 more years to get pardoned. This is complete garbage. The biggest burn is that I was even legally over the limit. The RCMP wrote down that I was 200 lbs, when actually I was 290lbs. I had an ex RCMP breathalyzer specialist look over the reports. I was told by my lawyer that the judge could still find me guilty in court though and advised me to plead guilty, “It depends on what type of mood the judge is in.”, is what my lawyer said to me. He also said it would cost me $6000 dollars more to fight it further in court, but I couldn’t afford it.

    Is there any way to be grandfathered in? I got grandfathered in on my F.A.C.??? I can own guns, but I cant travel? Seems a bit backwards doesn’t it? I was 8 weeks away from getting my pardon and they yank it out of my reach. This is a terrible system.

    I am also a paraplegic, guess they must consider me a huge risk lol. Give a guy a break already.

  • Birgit Davidson says:

    Hi Joe,

    Unfortunately, they are not making any exceptions to the new law. You will have to wait the 5 years.

    On a lighter note, you should be ok to travel to the US with only one impaired driving conviction on your record. According to the INA Act, you are not inadmissible.


  • Kaylah says:


    Ive been charges as a youth with thefts, and minor things. When i turned 18 me and my friend stole these girls things when we were drunk… i went directly to jail but was release and the charge was withdrawn…. that is my only adult charge, but due to me comiting a crime as an adult my whole record is open… i have a few missed court dates… am i still eligable to get a pardon or what should i do?

  • Birgitdavidson Davidson says:

    Hi Kaylah,

    I think the Fail to Appear convictions are the reason that your youth record was transferred to your adult record. The theft charge wouldn’t be the issue since it was withdrawn. How long ago was your last Fail to Appear?

    The only way to seal this type of record is to pardon it. Feel free to give me a call to discuss the details of your case.

    866-242-2411 ext 106

  • DJ says:

    Good Day,

    I was convicted for Refusal to Provide Breath Sample in July of 2010. Under the new rules, when will I be eligible for a pardon?

    As well, after court I did not appear for fingerprinting and photographing. I did not even realize that I was supposed to. I received a phone call from the arresting officer months later to advise me that I was charged with Failure to Appear for Fingerprinting. I immediately went to an RCMP station to have this done. The prosecutor issued a “stay of charges,” and I never had to go to court. Will this too show on my criminal record, and if so, is it too pardonable?


  • Nicole says:

    An individual is eligible for a pardon 5 or ten years after their sentence has been completed this includes fines but a driving suspension is not included, i would have to know the exact details of your sentence to give you a date. As for the stayed charge it is a non conviction but may still show under your name under restricted distribution. This too can be sealed or destroyed in time but any time there is any police involvement within the last five years it can hurt a pardon (record suspension) application.

  • KD says:

    I am greatly stressed out because of this new crime bill. I have an indictable offense, which I thought I would only have four more years to go. I now have to wait 9 more years to get a pardon.

    Charged at age 21
    Convicted at age 23
    Finish sentence age 26

    Now because of this law, i have to wait till im 36 years old before i can apply for a pardon. what a joke.

    i went to college to graduate in business, was planning on university until i found this out. Why is harper trying to push us to the edge? it makes it so much more difficult to go back a regular life that many would just say, f*ck it. four years i could wait but 9? forget about it…i have to start looking for a new career.

    • Kyle Pistawka says:

      Hi KD,

      Unfortunatley this bill has already been passed into law, so as you mentioned, for an indictable offence, you would not be eligible for a pardon until 10 years after the sentence is completed and all fines are paid. You are not the only person who is upset by this new law and I would urge you to have a look at the following recent blog post from our site if you are interested in contesting this law.

      Kind Regards,


  • ryan says:

    hello. thank you for taking the time to respond. I was convicted of two counts trafficking marijuana and served six months house arrest. also, I have a previous DUI. I’ve since completely turned things around and would like to one day see New York. is this impossible?

    • Hi Ryan,

      Of course it’s possible. The only question is what is the best way to proceed. Since the border can be a little complicated I would suggest you give me a call at 514.842.2411 x 227. But in a nutshell you will either need a pardon or a waiver and it will depend on your status at the border and your eligibility status for a pardon with the Canadian government.

      Kind regards,


  • Swara says:

    Hello my husband have a criminal record when He try to apply for pardon the company that he hire say he never will have the pardon. Apparently law change. It’s already 12 or more years after He was charge. He was 18 and it was a sexual charge. His step sister was a minor he did not went to court so he was Charge It’s any possibility that he can apply for a pardon ? Thank you.

    • Hi Swara,

      If the age difference was less than 5 years he can make the application. There is no guarantee it will be approved but he is not automatically disqualified.

      Kind regards,

  • Leanne says:

    Hi there. I got charged with possession of stolen property over $1000 several years ago. I actually didn’t even do the crime but I lived with the culprit at the time so I got charged with it. I started the process to get a pardon about 4 years back with a company but then they needed another installment of money and I didn’t have it at the time. I called them back several months later and they had closed my file and told me I would need to pay $100 to reopen it and they said they would call me back and they never did. Can I get my money back since they never completed the pardon or am I just out of luck? Also, when I did my last criminal check with the RCMP I had no record here which is really weird! I have a great job, I just want to go to the states. Also, I have tried to research this, can I get a passport or do you need to have a clear crimes record first? I know this is a dumb question but I want to know. Also, can you apply for a day pardon? Thanks a bunch!

    • Hi Leanne,

      Hopefully I didn’t miss anything from your comment. If so just let me know.

      1. I’m guessing your money is probably lost. But that is between you and the other company. Which was it you hired btw?

      2. It’s not entirely unusual for nothing to show at the RCMP. It’s possible you received a conditional discharge. I couldn’t know for certain without seeing court records.

      3. Go get a passport. But don’t go to the US border without being sure everything is taken care of.

      If you want to start again I can assure you that with us it would get done properly and so long as you stay in contact and don’t take an extra few years to pay off the file there will be no additional surcharges.

      Kind regards,


      4. No such thing as a day pardon. Get your full pardon before trying to cross the border. Just trust me on this.

  • Leanne says:

    I meant clear criminal record to get a passport. Thx

  • Adrian says:

    I applied for a Pardon through one of your competitors, it’s not the one that is advertising that you need to hurry and call before they cancel pardons, my questions are… Are there other legitimate pardon companies out there? I haven’t had too much of an issue with the one I’m with, they just recently contacted me to let me know that the requirements have changed slightly and they have some more paperwork to complete for the Parole board but its on their end and will be no extra cost to me, but the delay may cause my record check to time out and if so they would need an updated record check, which is free at the RCMP detachment I live near, they have informed me that my pardon is in the end stages, my second question is… If I start to have issues with this company and getting my pardon done, if I decided to switch to your company, would you have any access to my files at all or would I have to start from scratch? My third question is… Is it true that if my pardon is completed correctly and I have no Record with the US border , will I be able to cross the border and not have a flag in the system that I have received a pardon? The way I understand it is that if you haven’t been stopped at the border and they haven’t downloaded your criminal info into their system already, then if you receive a proper pardon, the US border will have no access and no way of ever knowing that you had a criminal record or a pardon… Is this correct? Also as it stands I started my pardon process almost two years ago, the process has been slow somewhat due to my untimely response to some requests from the pardon company, it has been well over 10 years since I’ve had any interaction whatsoever with the law, I was accused of 2nd degree murder when I was 14, after a long process the crown stayed the charges because their key witness was found to be in jail at the time of the murder and couldn’t have witnessed it, I also have proof that I wasn’t even in the city, anyway will this affect my pardon and does any DNA records from the DNA they took from me stay on file or does it get removed like my finger print records? I have more questions but I have taken up enough of your time, I apologize as I am not even using your company, had I known about you before hand I would have chosen you, based on the fact that you have been very candid with the people in the previous comments and as they say, you can judge a tree by its fruit… Thank You For Your Time…

    • Hi Adrian,

      On the first question, yes, there are certainly other respectable pardon services out there. The problem is that our clients are one time clients for the most part so the natural incentive to keep your client base happy disappears. It makes it very easy for others to sell hard and provide a lousy service.

      On the other I would not have access to your files but you should be able to request them yourself, after which you could just forward them to me.

      Finally, you say your charge(s) were stayed. Do you have other convictions on your record? If not I suggest you give me a call.

      I’m sure I missed a lot but it’s a big wall of text. I don’t mind answering so if there is something I missed just hit the reply button.

      Kind regards,

      514.842.2411 x 227

  • Adeola says:

    Hello Michael,
    My husband was charged with 3 counts of possession with the intent to sell marihuana in 2008, he was released from prison in May of 2009 and completed probation in May of 2010. I have 2 questions: 1. Could he have been eligible for a pardon if he filed his paperwork to a pardon company and the company submitted his paperwork prior prior to his eligible date in May 2015 according to the grandfather clause? 2. Is there anyway that he is eligible for a 5 year wait time verses a 10 year wait time? Thank you for the genuine support you are giving in helping all of us to understand the pardon laws.

    • Hi Adeola,

      I’m afraid i don’t have great answers for you. 1. There is no grandfather clause. If you were told this the company that said it was being fraudulent. There is a lot of this going around.

      2. No. He must abide by the rules as they are now.

      If he wants to travel to the USA we can still apply for a waiver but he will have to meet his eligibility requirements for his pardon. If you would like to discuss give me a call.

      Kind regards,


  • Chris says:

    Hi there.

    I have been in contact with Pardon Services Canada. I was convicted of possession of a controlled substance. No jail time. Just a fine. 1st offence. I have to travel to the US for business and my concern is just getting across the border.

    The fellow at pardon Services Canada seems very eager to get my $. Are these guys legit? I don’t want to spend close to $2000 for nothing.

    Thank you.


    • Hi Chris,

      Pardon Services Canada is certainly legit however you will also find our prices much more competitive. We also have the advantage of our own fingerprinting server which is extremely valuable when it comes time to renew your waiver application. It will make the renewal process much, much simpler for you since you will not have to be fingerprinted ever again.

      Give me a call if you want to discuss. I can be reached at the number below.

      866-242-2411 x 227

  • L. Cole says:

    Hello. If I have a charge for possession with intent of selling (cocaine), would I have to wait the 5 years or the new 10 years which was put into effect because of the new law? Where can I find your price list for services?

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