As an immigration lawyer, I receive many telephone calls from people who have bought their plane tickets, got up at a “god awful” time in the morning to get to the airport to fly to the USA, and were turned away at the border.
They are informed that they have a criminal infraction that bars them from entering the USA.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has access to the Canadian Police Information Centre database (CPIC). As soon as you are arrested, your information is entered into CPIC.
CBP has the discretion to allow entry but, in my experience, they will bar entry if you have been arrested, have a conditional discharge or a conviction for a crime. Additionally, the USA does not recognize pardons from Canada.
As such, you must apply for a waiver for advance permission to enter the USA. This is a relatively easy process but requires some legal know-how and experience.
We are here to help. If you would like more information on entry waivers or are seeking legal advice, please contact me or call 902-469-9500.