Category Archives: how to get a pardon

Learn how to get a pardon for your criminal record in Canada.

GPS Tracking for Criminals?

First SCRAM ankle bracelets for individuals and ignition interlock devices for cars to monitor alcohol consumption, now GPS systems used specifically to track the whereabouts of criminals?

It could happen if provincial justice departments get their way. The idea was proposed to track offenders that are released on the conditions of a peace bond, a common sentence for individuals involved in domestic disputes and spousal abuse. The sentence is handed based on the condition that the offender keeps the peace, and stays away from their victim, for an allotted period of time in order to meet the conditions of their sentence and ultimately stay out of jail.

With the proposed GPS tracking systems, offenders released on the conditions of peace bonds could have their whereabouts monitored at all times. For an offender convicted of spousal abuse, monitoring bracelets could be enforced to keep an eye on the offender and provide additional protection to the offender’s victim, with the hopes of ultimately preventing further abuse. It is unclear as to whether or not this will pass into legislation but lawmakers hope to have this program introduced into the legal system.

Express Pardons can help individuals with criminal records obtain Canadian Pardons and US Entry waivers.

Fingerprinting Required for Certified Criminal Record Searches

A criminal record check is required for both pardon and waiver applications.  In order to obtain a certified criminal record from the RCPM CPIC database a person has to have their fingerprints done for the purpose of a pardon or waiver, depending on the application.  Fingerprints can be done at any local police station or there a number of private locations across Canada that can take fingerprints for either application.  Once the fingerprints are completed they are sent to the RCMP who will in turn generate the criminal record.  The criminal record will show all charges for an individual that are found on the Canadian criminal record database.  According to the RCMP:

  • The Canadian Criminal Real Time Identification Services destroys fingerprint submissions relative to civil screening (including Vulnerable Sector Verifications) when the search process is completed. The fingerprints are not added to the RCMP National Repository of Criminal Records and are not searched for future purposes.

This means that any person can get a criminal record search done without worrying about whether or not doing so will flag them in a system or create a new record.  Getting fingerprints done is the only way to get a certified criminal record check done in Canada.  The certified criminal record is a requirement of both the Canadian and US governments.  Contact Express Pardons for all your pardon and waiver questions or to start an application today.

The National Parole Board and Canadian Pardons

The National Parole Board is a branch of the Canadian Government within the Ministry of Public Safety Canada.  Every pardon application is submitted to the National Parole Board and the board is responsible for approving or denying each application.  The Board is also an independent administrative tribunal that has exclusive authority under the Corrections and Conditional Release Act to grant, deny, cancel, terminate or revoke day parole and full parole.

  • The National Parole Board (NPB), as part of the criminal justice system, makes independent, quality conditional release and pardon decisions and clemency recommendations. The Board contributes to the protection of society by facilitating as appropriate, the timely reintegration of offenders as law-abiding citizens.
  • The Criminal Records Act (CRA) authorizes the National Parole Board to grant or refuse to grant pardons to persons convicted of offences under federal acts and regulations and to revoke a pardon or, under specific circumstances, declare that a pardon ceases to have effect.

According to the National Parole Board:

  • A pardon is evidence that the conviction should no longer reflect negatively on a person’s character. In support of this statement, the Criminal Records Act restricts access to records under federal jurisdiction and removes any disqualifications that would result from a conviction. With regards to employment, the Criminal Records Act specifies that information about pardoned offences shall not be sought in the employment applications of organizations under federal jurisdiction. In addition, the Canadian Human Rights Act forbids federal agencies and departments to discriminate against an individual based on a pardoned record.

Express Pardons works closely with the National Parole Board guidelines to ensure that all pardon applications submitted on behalf of our clients are approved.  Please contact Express Pardons for more information regarding pardon applications.

Tougher Canadian Pardon Laws Lead to Heavier Reliance on Express Pardons

On June 29, 2010, the Canadian government passed tough new legislation that now makes the pardon process much more complicated.  This new law requires individuals with more serious offences to build a case for their pardon application.  It is now up to the individual to convince the National Parole Board that they deserve a pardon, making the application considerably more difficult than before.   Since the new legislation has passed, Express Pardons phone lines have been flooded with calls with questions regarding the changes.
Some of the most Frequently Asked Questions are:

  • When do these changes take place?

Answer: Immediately as of June 29, 2010

  • What are the changes?

Answer: Eligibility times lines have changed for all applicants and those individuals with more serious offences must prove to the National Parole Board that they both need and deserve a pardon.

  • How do I know if these changes affect me?

Answer: Contact Express Pardons at 1-866-416-6772 to find out how these changes will affect you while learning how to get your pardon application underway.

  • Am I still eligible?

Answer: Check out the Express Pardons website for information on your eligibility and getting an application started.

New Pardon Law Bill C-23A Passes Parliament in Final Hour

In case you haven’t been following the recent news regarding pardons, parliament has been in a race to pass legislation that would prevent Karla Homolka from becoming eligible for a pardon in July. Yesterday, in a last minute negotation, the parties came to an agreement to split the proposed Bill C-23 into two, Bill C-23A and C-23B.

Bill C-23A was then pass by Parliament in the final hour before they summer recess. Although the bill has yet to pass through the Senate and be signed into law, it likely will within the next few weeks.

To Summarize the changes being brought into effect:

  • Eligibility waits for very serious offences will change from 5 years to 10 years
  • Eligibility waits schedule 1 summary offences will change from 3 years to 5 years
  • In the case of a serious offence (indictable or schedule 1 summary), granting the pardon at that time must provide a measurable benefit to the applicant, sustain his or her rehabilitation in society as a law-abiding citizen and not bring the administration of justice into disrepute.
  • The Onus is now on the applicant to demonstrate the above.

Here is the text of the newly amended Bill c23A:

That, notwithstanding any Standing Order or usual practice of the House, it be an instruction to the Standing Committee on Public Safety and National Security that it divide Bill C-23, An Act to amend the Criminal Records Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts, into two bills, namely Bill C-23A, An Act to amend the Criminal Records Act, and Bill C-23B, An Act to amend the Criminal Records Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts;

that Bill C-23A be composed of
(a) a clause that sets out the short title as Limiting Pardons for Serious Crimes Act;
(b) clause 9 of Bill C-23, amended
(i) to renumber subsection 4(1) as section 4;
(ii) to amend sections 4 and 4.1 as follows:
Restrictions on application for pardon
4. A person is ineligible to apply for a pardon until the following period has elapsed after the expiry according to law of any sentence, including a sentence of imprisonment, a period of probation and the payment of any fine, imposed for an offence:
(a) 10 years, in the case of a serious personal injury offence within the meaning of section 752 of the Criminal Code, including manslaughter, for which the applicant was sentenced to imprisonment for a period of two years or more or an offence referred to in Schedule 1 that was prosecuted by indictment, or five years in the case of any other offence prosecuted by indictment, an offence referred to in Schedule 1 that is punishable on summary conviction or an offence that is a service offence within the meaning of the National Defence Act for which the offender was punished by a fine of more than two thousand dollars, detention for more than six months, dismissal from Her Majesty’s service, imprisonment for more than six months or a punishment that is greater than imprisonment for less than two years in the scale of punishments set out in subsection 139(1) of that Act; or
(b) three years, in the case of an offence, other than one referred to in paragraph (a), that is punishable on summary conviction or that is a service offence within the meaning of the National Defence Act.
Pardon
4.1 (1) The Board may grant a pardon for an offence if the Board is satisfied that
(a) the applicant, during the applicable period referred to in section 4, has been of good conduct and has not been convicted of an offence under an Act of Parliament; and
(b) in the case of an offence referred to in paragraph 4(a), granting the pardon at that time would provide a measurable benefit to the applicant, would sustain his or her rehabilitation in society as a law-abiding citizen and would not bring the administration of justice into disrepute.
Onus on applicant
(2) In the case of an offence referred to in paragraph 4(a), the applicant has the onus of satisfying the Board that the pardon would provide a measurable benefit to the applicant and would sustain his or her rehabilitation in society as a law-abiding citizen.
Factors
(3) In determining whether granting the pardon would bring the administration of justice into disrepute, the Board may consider
(a) the nature, gravity and duration of the offence;
(b) the circumstances surrounding the commission of the offence;
(c) information relating to the applicant’s criminal history and, in the case of a service offence within the meaning of the National Defence Act, to any service offence history of the applicant that is relevant to the application; and
(d) any factor that is prescribed by regulation.
(iii) to delete the remainder of clause 9 of BIll C-23;
(c) clause 10 of Bill C-23, amended
(i) to amend section 4.2 by
deleting paragraph (1)(a);
deleting the words “if the applicant is eligible” from paragraph (1)(b);
substituting pardon for record suspension in subsections (1) and (2); and
(ii) to delete the remainder of clause 10 of Bill C-23;
(d) clause 12 of Bill C-23, amended as follows:
Paragraph 5(a) of the Act is replaced by the following:
(a) is evidence of the fact that
(i) the Board, after making inquiries, was satisfied that the applicant for the pardon was of good conduct, and
(ii) the conviction in respect of which the pardon is granted should no longer reflect adversely on the applicant’s character; and
(e) clause 15 of Bill C-23, amended
i. to amend subsection 6.3(2) by substituting pardon for record suspension; and
ii. to delete the remainder of subclause 15(1) of Bill C-23;
(f) clause 22 of Bill C-23, amended
i. to delete subclause 22(1) of Bill C-23; and
ii. to delete paragraph 9.1(c.2) in subclause 22(2) of Bill C-23;
(g) clause 24 of Bill C-23, amended to renumber the schedule to the Criminal Records Act as Schedule 2;
(h) a clause that adds to the Criminal Records Act a Schedule 1 having the same content as Schedule 1 in the schedule to Bill C-23;
(i) clause 46 of Bill C-23, amended
(i) to delete the words “as though it were an application for a record suspension”; and
(ii) to replace the reference to subsection 47(1) with a reference to section 47;
(j) clause 47 of Bill C-23, amended
(i) to delete subsection (2); and
(ii) to renumber subsection 47(1) as 47;
that Bill C-23B be composed of
(a) clauses 1 to 23 of Bill C-23;
(b) clause 24 of Bill C-23, amended to provide that Schedule 2 to the Criminal Records Act is replaced by the schedule set out in the schedule to the Bill;
(c) clauses 25 to 48 of Bill C-23; and
(d) a schedule that includes a Schedule 2 having the same content as Schedule 2 in the schedule to Bill C-23;
that Bills C-23A and C-23B be printed;
that, for the purposes of printing Bills C-23A and C-23B, the Law Clerk and Parliamentary Counsel be authorized to make any technical changes or corrections in those bills as may be necessary to give effect to this motion; and
that Bill C-23A be deemed to have been reported from the Committee without amendment, deemed concurred in at report stage and deemed read a third time and passed.

Criminal Record Check for Employment? – Get a Canadian Pardon!

Author: Jared Church

With modern criminal record systems being so easily accessed by employers, more and more of them are conducting criminal record checks as part of their pre-employment screening practices.

Employment is probably the single largest reason why getting a Canadian pardon for your criminal record is so important. Whether or not your criminal record affects your employment search, or your current job, depends on the job and on your location.

Human Rights Legislation

Human Rights Legislation, Federal and some Provincial, provide protection against most discrimination based on your criminal record. So, the first thing you need to know before you answer an employment application question about your criminal record is whether or not the employer has the right to ask in the first place. Various Human Rights Acts prohibit employers from requesting job applicants from disclosing if they have a criminal record, depending on the circumstances of employment.

If you have a criminal record, and you are looking to apply for a job or position, find out whether the company or organization is federal or provincial, and then review the following list:

Federal – Protection for pardon records, no protection for unpardoned records

Alberta – No protection

British Columbia – Protection for both pardoned and unpardoned records

Manitoba – No protection

New Brunswick – No protection

Newfoundland and Labrador – No protection

Nova Scotia – No protection

Ontario – Protection for pardon records, no protection for unpardoned records

Prince Edward Island – Protection for criminal records

Quebec – Protection for both pardoned and unpardoned records

Saskatchewan – No protection

North West Territories – Protection for pardon records, no protection for unpardoned records

Yukon – Protection for criminal records

Nunavut – Protection for pardon records, no protection for unpardoned records

Under the Criminal Records Act, federal government employment departments cannot ask questions that could expose a conviction for which a pardon has been granted. If a federal employer wishes to obtain information about a person’s criminal record history, the question should be phrased: “Have you ever been convicted of an offence for which you have not received a pardon?”

In this case a pardoned individual can answer “No.” If you do not have a pardon, however, you will need to obtain one before you apply, or you will almost certainly be turned down for the position.

If your potential or current employer falls under provincial legislation, you will have to check whether your province has protection in place for pardoned, and in some cases, even unpardoned criminal records.

Bona Fide Occupational Requirements (BFOR)

Despite all the human rights protection in place in Canada, many employers still screen for criminal records. In many cases, employers may ask for a criminal record check if they have established that it is a Bona Fide Occupational Requirement (BFOR), defined as a justifiable reason for discrimination based on a business necessity. If screening for a criminal records is required for the safe and efficient operation of the organization, or a requirement that can be clearly defended as intrinsically required by the tasks an employee is expected to perform, then they can lawfully inquire about your criminal past.

Some of the most common BFOR reasons used to conduct criminal record checks include:

  • Requirement to be bonded
  • Required to work on a secured job-site
  • Employee theft prevention
  • Required to work with/for vulnerable persons
  • Required to travel internationally/cross borders.

Common industries which require Pardons:

Construction on secure jobsites, law enforcement and corrections, legal, any job involving cashiers and cash handling, financial, banking and insurance, accounting, medical and nursing, dental and dental assistance, volunteering and social work, veterinarian, port and marine, airport and borders.

Backdoor Criminal Record Checks – The Job Never Offered

Many businesses conduct criminal record checks through third parties as part of their pre-employment screening practices. Usually, the applicant will sign an application for employment which includes authorization to conduct a background check. The employer will then hand off the file to a third party who conducts the criminal record check and reports the results exclusively to the employer. It is then the employer’s option whether to disclose the results of the check to the potential candidate.

A lot of times, to avoid potential liability, the employer will simply not call the candidate back for a second interview. You will not even know that your criminal record was the reason you were not considered further for the position.

The Good News – A Canadian Pardon

A criminal record that has been successfully pardoned CANNOT be accessed by any employer, even in provinces that do not offer protection for discrimination based on pardoned or unpardoned criminal records.

Once you have been pardoned, your criminal record will not turn up in a criminal record check, plain and simple. Even police will no longer have access to your criminal record. If you are interested in applying for a Canadian pardon and would like more information, or to find out if you are eligible, then visit www.ExpressPardons.com today.

Express Pardons has built a reputation for delivering Canada’s fastest, guaranteed pardon.

About the Author:

Jared Church is RCMP accredited, a voting member of the Paralegal Society of Canada, and a leading expert in the field of Canadian Pardons, U.S. Entry Waivers, criminal record systems, and similar legal matters in Canada.

Feel free to Email Jared your questions at info@ExpressPardons.com

Article Source: ArticlesBase.comCriminal Record Check for Employment? – Get a Canadian Pardon!

When Can I Apply For A Canadian Pardon?

Author: Jared Church

See The full article here.

You have a criminal record in Canada,  you want to know when you can start the process of applying for a pardon?

- You are eligible to receive a pardon when you have satisfied your sentence and demonstrated that you have remained of good conduct for a certain period of time, known as an eligibility period.

The Canadian Criminal Records Act determined that the length of time for which you must prove you have remained crime free and of good conduct depends on the nature of the offences for which you have been convicted.

Summary vs. Indictable Offences

Some crimes in the criminal code are automatically indictable, and others automatically summary; most, however, are hybrid. Hybrid offences are those where the Crown can elect to proceed by summary or by indictment.

To determine how long you must wait before applying for a pardon, you have to determine whether your last offence was summary or by indictment.

Here is a useful chart of the more common offences:

SUMMARY OFFENCES

Driving Under the Influence

Simple Possession

Theft Under $5000

Fraud Under $5000

Mischief

Failure to Appear

Breach of Probation

Assault

INDICTABLE OFFENCES

Robbery

Possession for the Purpose of Trafficking

Theft Over $5000

Fraud Over $5000

Breaking and Entering

Trafficking in Narcotic/Contr. Substance

Conspiracy

Assault Aggravated/Causing Bodily Harm

So when are you eligible to file a pardon?

For Summary Offences – 3 years from the completion of your sentence

For Indictable Offences – 5 years from the completion of your sentence

When is your sentence complete?

You have completed your sentence for the purpose of eligibility when you have served any jail time, completed any probation, and paid any fines, restitutions and/or victim surcharges. Prohibition orders of your driver’s license or of firearms do not affect eligibility.

When can I begin the pardon application process?

You are only required to be eligible for the final stage of the application process: filing with the National Parole Board of Canada. There can be up to 10 months or more of work to do before you file your pardon with the board, so you can start the application before you are technically eligible.

If you are using a professional service such as Express Pardons to complete your pardon application, all of the preliminary work will be handled for you and your application will automatically be filed on the day you become eligible. In this way you will receive your pardon in the fastest time physically and legally possible.

What if I haven’t paid a court fine or restitution?

Technically, court fines and restitution orders are considered part of your sentence and therefore must be paid before you become eligible for a pardon. However, there is a limitation on how far back the board will check into payment of fines, which is 15 years. If your fines or restitutions are more than 15 years old, you are not required to demonstrate they are paid, unless they are substantial (over $5000), in which case the board may request proof of payment.

What if I have a recent Conditional Discharge?

If you have a recent conditional discharge in addition to past convictions, the discharge does not factor into your eligibility. Use your last conviction before the discharge to calculate when you are eligible for a pardon. The Board will ignore the discharge and consider the pardon for your other convictions. The conditional discharge will automatically be removed from your record 3 years after your complete the conditions given as part of the sentence.

If you have any questions about this article or your personal circumstances, fill out a free consultation request and receive an answer within 24hours.

About the Author:

Jared Church is an RCMP accredited member of the Paralegal Society of Canada and a leading expert in the field of Canadian Pardons, U.S. Entry Waivers, criminal record systems, and similar legal matters in Canada.

Feel free to Email Jared your questions at info@ExpressPardons.com
For more information on the author’s firm, visit www.ExpressPardons.com

Article Source: ArticlesBase.comWhen Can I Apply For A Canadian Pardon?

How To Get A Pardon – Step 6

At this point in the Canadian pardon application process, you should have filed your pardon with the National Parole Board of Canada, Pardons and Clemency Division.

Once your pardon has passed the initial screening process, you will receive a letter of Acknowledgement from the board. Your pardon application is now under review.

Unfortunately, this is often the longest part of the application process.

In this post, I want to discuss how to get your pardon fast-tracked through the application process. There are several ways this can be done, most of them are trade secrets of pardon professionals, which we use to aid our priority clients to get ahead of the crowd. However, there is a way the average self-applicant can fast-track their pardon.
The quickest way to get a pardon for a typical self-applicant, is to apply for “urgency” status from the pardon board.
Unfortunately, in recent years, the Pardons board hast tightened up is internal policy for approving urgency status.

There are essentially three ways to obtain urgency status:

  1. Humanitarian Grounds
  2. Pending loss of employment
  3. Pending loss of employment opportunity

1. Humanitarian grounds for urgency

This is by far the most difficult way to get approved for urgency status. I once had a client who was outside of Canada and could not return due to his criminal record. At the same time, his Canadian wife gave birth to their daughter. He was not even allowed to meet his newborn daughter. I prepared a petition for urgency for his pardon, based on humanitarian grounds, so he could re-enter Canada to be reunited with his family. However, the board rejected this petition, because he was not a Canadian citizen! Humanitarian grounds only applies to Canadians.

Generally, the board will only grant urgency based on humanitarian grounds when failing to obtain a pardon urgently will imposed undue hardship on the applicant which is above and beyond that experienced by other pardon applicants, AND only when the hardship experienced exceeds that which should be naturally expected to result from having being convicted of a criminal offence. In my experience, its is especially this latter point which dooms applications for urgency based on humanitarian grounds. Is is the board’s interpretation that most, if not all, hardship created by having a criminal record is to be expected. I believe this policy was adopted in an earlier time. Nowadays, with criminal record checks being essentially automated, and practised as a course of business by more and more companies, the consequences of having a criminal record far outweight those intended by the courts when they created the criminal record systems. But that is my opinion.

In my experience working on over 15,000 pardon applications, I have yet to see a single file which successfully qualified for urgency based on humanitarian grounds. You are far better off concentrating on the next two options.

2. Pending Loss of Employment

If you can demonstrate to the pardon board that you will soon lose you job because of your criminal record, you may be able to obtain urgency status for your pardon application.

To do so, you must obtain a letter from your employer stating that unless you obtain a pardon in a timely manner, your employment will be terminated. In these circumstances the board will assign your file to priority status to help you keep your employment.

It is extremely important that the letter from your employer does not say that the reason you will lose your job without the pardon is because you need to be able to enter the United States. Even if this is the reason, be sure it is excluded from the letter. The Board will not approve urgency for this purpose because of your alternative option to apply for a U.S. Entry Waiver (“waiver of inadmissibility”). Obviously, you do not want to apply for a waiver if you don’t have to (if you haven’t been denied to the United States)

Remember to keep the letter short, straightforward and factual. And remember, the purpose is urgency. A letter which does not imply pending job loss will not be enough. The letter must be signed, and must contain the contact details of the signer. The board will typically contact the employer to confirm the details of the letter.

What if you are self-employed?

Unfortunately, if you are self-employed, you are in a tough spot. The board will only accept third-party evidence before considering urgency. If you are self-employed and your work/career is in jeopardy because you have not yet received a pardon, you will need to obtain some documentation which will show the board why your job will be lost if you do not get your pardon quickly.

For example, if you need to work on a secure job site, and you have a contract offer which will expire soon, send the board a copy of the contract, including the section which describes the requirement for you to pass a security screening. Include a letter of your own explaining the situation to the board and requesting urgency.

3. Pending Loss of Employment Opportunity

Similar to the above point, if you have a firm committment for employment, but which is dependant on obtaining a pardon, you may be able to obtain urgency status.

Again, you will need a letter addressed to the Board from the employer which explicitly states that they will give you employment as soon as you are pardoned.

The board will not accept documentation showing a job opportunity that is dependant on having a clear criminal record. You must have a specific offer of employment. Afterall, everyone is looking for a pardon to work or travel, and the Board cannot offer urgency status to everyone, as that would defeat the purpose.

How To Get A Pardon – Step 5

If you have been following my posts so far, you should be ready to prepare and submit your pardon application to the Clemency and Pardons Division of the National Parole Board.

Pardon professionals, such as Express Pardons, have techniques which help them fast-track through the National Parole Board review process. However, if you are doing the application on your own, you should focus on just making sure the application is correct and complete.

The following checklist should help you make sure that your application is in proper order and less likely to be rejected by the National Parole Board:

  1. Check that the Pardon Application form is signed by you in original form, and dated by you within the last 12 months.
  2. Check that you have included the original RCMP Identification Services criminal record check (CPIC) and the civil product (4 fingerprint cover), certified with the RCMP seal, and dated within the last 12 months.
  3. Check that you have included an original pardon Court Information form for each and every conviction which was completed within the last 5 years, or which includes a fine or restitution order within the last 15 years. Be sure to check the courts work. Make sure all the dates entered match those on your CPIC criminal record. Check that the court clerk properly certified each document.
  4. Check that you have included a complete Local Police Records Check from each police that had jurisdiction over your areas of residence in the last 5 years. Local Police Checks are only valid for 6 months. If the police check has been dated more than 6 months ago, you must obtain a new one. Be sure to check each Local Police Check for any details that might affect the National Parole Boards review of your pardon application. If you have held a foreign address in the last five years, be sure you have included a foreign police check or letter of good conduct, also dated within the last 6 months.
  5. If relevant, check that you have included a copy of your military conduct sheet, or a letter from your commanding officer in the Canadian Armed Forces. If including a letter from a commanding officer, the letter must de dated no more than 6 months ago. If your military conduct sheet contains criminal equivalent offences, the requirements  apply for obtaining court documents to demonstrate eligibility.
  6. Finally, be sure to include proof of status in Canada if you were not born in Canada. If you are a Canadian citizen, you may include a clear photocopy of your Canadian passport or citizenship card. If you are a landed immigrant or status refugee, you will need to include a copy of valid papers demonstrating your status in Canada.

You are now ready to file your pardon. Prepare the above and make a copy of all the documents for your personal reference. You will need to obtain a money order in the amount of $50.00, payable to the “Receiver General of Canada”, which you will have to submit with your pardon application to the Board.

When you have a money order, mail your original form application documents with the money order as follows:

Clemency and Pardons Division
National Parole Board
410 Laurier Avenue West
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0R1

If your application passes the initial screening by the National Parole Board, you will receive a letter of acknowledgement in about 2 – 3 weeks.

In my next post, I will discuss the National Parole Board process and what you can expect.

How To Get A Pardon – Step 4

In my last post we discussed the difficulties in obtaining your local police records checks. By now you should have made the necessary requests to obtain a local police check for each and every city in which you have lived during the last five years.

The next step in the pardon process is only necessary if you have served in the Canadian Forces at some point. If you have, then you will need to obtain a copy of your military conduct sheet, or a letter from your commanding officer.

Why do you need to obtain a Military Conduct Sheet? Military conduct records contain both civil criminal convictions and military misconduct. Civilian-type convictions occasionally occur within the military, but are not processed through the civilian courts, so the record may not be on a standard criminal record. For this reason, you must obtain the military conduct document for your pardon application. Likewise, the National Parole Board wants to know about any military misconduct when reviewing your pardon file. By submitting the conduct sheet with your pardon for consideration, any records on the conduct sheet become subject to the pardon, just like those convictions on your criminal record.

In order to know what you need, you need to figure out which of the following applies to you:

1. You are a current Regular or Reserve member of the Canadian Forces.

In this case you will need to go to your commanding officer and request a signed and certified copy of your Military Conduct Sheet. If you do not have a conduct sheet, you will need to obtain a letter confirming this from your commanding officer.

2. You are a former member of the Reserve, having left the reserve within the last 3 years.

Likewise, in this case you will need to go to your former commanding officer and request a signed and certified copy of your Military Conduct Sheet. If there is no conduct sheet, you will need to obtain a letter confirming this from your former commanding officer.

3. You are a former Regular, having left the military within the last 5 years.

In this case, your Military Conduct Sheet is held by the Department of National Defence, until after 5 years, it is transferred to the National Archives of Canada. You will need to obtain and complete a Military Conduct Record Request form. Complete the form and sent it along with a signed authorization to the Department of National Defence to obtain a copy of your conduct sheet. Be prepared to wait up to 6 months if you do not have contacts within the DND. If you do not have a conduct sheet on record, you will receive a letter confirming such in its place. Be sure to include this with your pardon.

4. You are a former Regular, having left the military more than 5 years ago, or you are a former Reserve, having left the military more than 3 years ago.

In this case, your Military Conduct Sheet is held within the National Archives of Canada. You will need to obtain and complete a Military Conduct Record Request form. Complete the form and sent it along with a signed authorization to the National Archives to obtain a copy of your conduct sheet. Be prepared to wait up to 6 months if you do not have contacts at the National Archives. If you do not have a conduct sheet on record, you will receive a letter confirming such instead. Be sure to include either with your pardon.

Dealing with the National Defence or National Archives can be difficult to do on your own. You may find it much easier to simply have your pardon application professionally managed. Several pardon service providers have established connections which allow them to obtain your records for you, and usually in a faster time frame. They also already have the forms required on hand.

In my next post, I will discuss the next stage in obtaining your pardon: preparing and filing your application with the National Parole Board.