I’m a 76 year old male US citizen. I just got denied entry to Canada, due to several long past misdemeanor convictions, like 25 or more years ago! None are weapon or drug related, they are public intoxification (2), damage to a wall payphone in a bus station, violent student protest, two DUIs spaced 6 months apart, a B&E into a clothes store, and the most serious one, an out of court settlement of a minor assault on a lady friend. Some of the misdemeanors that I committed here in the USA are considered felonies in Canada, or so I was told by the Canadian border control officer. After an hour or so of vehicular inspection and my investigation, I was told that I could return to the USA, but only after I signed a voluntary withdrawal of my application to enter Canada. After signing the paper, I turned back & entered the USA without any problem. Now’s here’s my real concern. I’m planning a trip to Western Europe (Ireland and Sweden) starting in two weeks. Will I run into the same hassles over there? By the way, my passport was NOT stamped!

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    No reason why you should run into any problems. You do not have to apply for a visa and unless you get asked about a criminal record (extremely unlikely given your age), you do not have to disclose anything. Sep 4, 2018 at 16:37
  • Well that’s what I thought about going to Canada too! I’m hoping Ireland doesn’t run an NCIC check on me!! LOL
    – Bruce H
    Sep 4, 2018 at 16:46
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    Canada and the USA are more tightly integrated than Siamese twins. It is not the same with the others. Sep 4, 2018 at 16:48
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    Just an FYI, and this is probably a pedantic point, Canada doesn't have misdemeanours and felonies, but rather summary and indictable offences. The net effect of them isn't quite the same but it's broadly similar. It doesn't change your interpretation, though. Sep 4, 2018 at 17:55

1 Answer 1


I was told that I could return to the USA, but only after I signed a voluntary withdrawal of my application to enter Canada

So technically you were not denied entry into Canada, a voluntary withdrawal of application at the US/Canadian border between their citizens is not that big of a deal. This alone will not be a reason to deny you entry into other countries.

There is no need to state on future visa or visa free entry applications that you were once denied entry into Canada. And it is not lying either. Unless specifically asked about this incident, you don't even have to narrate it.

What happens when you’re denied entry to Canada

Whatever the reason for you being stopped at the Canada/US Border or Airport, there are a number of “scenarios” that could play out, each having differing implications.

The most common scenario we see is that a CBSA officer simply refuses you entry to Canada and “allows you withdraw your application for admission” This amounts to a legal “slap-on-the-wrist” . In such cases, officers will usually advise you to return to Canada with sufficient documentation and information that proves you are a genuine temporary resident i.e., visitor, student or worker. Documents showing your ties to your home country are generally what the CBSA officer is looking for.


If you have a criminal record or if you may not be able to demonstrate your intentions to enter Canada as a temporary resident, make sure that you consult with an immigration lawyer before attempting the enter Canada to avoid being denied entry to Canada.

Source: Michael Niren

According to the linked source, Michael is a graduate of Osgoode Hall Law School in Toronto. He is a member of the Law Society of Upper Canada, the Canadian Bar Association’s Citizenship and Immigration Section and the Associate Member of the American Bar Association.

However, the reason you were told to go back may well be Criminal Inadmissibility which itself may become a deciding factor in the future if your destination receives the data from the US.

Must Read: Denied Entry Into Canada


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