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Hemlock

Border Crossing FAQ (including DUI Q/A)

388 posts in this topic

I'm heading up to Rainy Lake on the 12th to fish the east side of Rainy. I'll be camping in the Nat'l Park. I have a Canadian fishing license. Is it OK to cross the border by boat to fish a reef on the Canadian side? Or do I have to check-in somewhere with customs?

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Unless you have a Remote Area Border Crossing permit (RABC), you'll need to check in with Canadian customs every time you cross into Canadian waters. I haven't crossed on Rainy Lake personally so I don't know where (or if) there are remote call-in reporting stations on the lake itself. I'm sure others will chime in on that. But if you have a valid RABC permit, you should be good to go.

I'm sure you know this already, but keep in mind that all the same rules apply for water crossing as they do for land crossing (e.g. no live minnows or leeches). Harvest and slot limits are also different for the Canadian side of Rainy Lake so be sure to check the Ontario regs if you plan on keeping any fish.

Good luck!

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Hemlock,quick ? I have 2 dui '97 & '03 been going to the Red Lake ONT. area for bout oh since i was in jr high so like 15yrs staight prior to last yr when stopped and ck'd and denied access which I kinda expected so now I'm trying to correct the problem and have gathered a few #'s any tips? and Do Ya Think I Will Get Into Canada Again?? my family hasnt went the past 2 yrs either cuz they know how much I enjoy it(also a uncle has a dui too) but I dont wanna hold any1 back also...thanx

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Based on Hemlock's post on page 1, here's an excerpt:

As long as that was your only offense, 10 years, and you are clear.

1-3 years, deemed inadmissable.

3-5 years, apply for temp permit ($200)

5-10 years, apply for rehabilitation permit ($200) and good for 5 years.

------------------------------------------------------------

With 2 strikes in less than 10 years I'd guess you're still out of luck... you're borderline on your 03' conviction... and might be able to get through with the permit, but your best off calling the customs office and finding out yourself vs taking the educated guess of some people...

marine_man

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I agree with Marine Man, best off to call and try and get an answer from an immigration officer.

Note: when dealing with these matters, always ask to speak to an Immigration Officer, not a customs agent. They are the ones that make these decisions.

Good luck, I wish you well.

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Just an FYI on the border crossing at I'Falls...going into Canada went real well. We got there around 8:30am and there was a short line of 10 rigs or so. Needed to show I.D. and birth certificates for the kids. Standard questions (where you going, how long, booze, food, fire arms, bait, etc).

Coming back to MN though.....WOW!!! We got in line at 9:30am and didn't make it to the checkpoint until 11:30am!!! What a line of vehicles and what a wait! Just a couple suggestions....one, patience is a virtue; take a deep breath and wait it out.....two, hit the bathroom before you get in line!

Or better yet, just get there earlier than we did. tongue.gif

Lots of vehicles trying to cut in line too where entrances are. Very un-cool.

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Suggestion...

When we cross the border we know there are certain things the border agents are looking for. So, prior to the trip, we create an Excel list of all of our gear/tobacco/etc. line itemized. When we get to the agent we hand him the list with passports. We have not been additionally checked, we are not asked questions, nothing. Then, on the way back, we cross off or add any change in items and give that list to customs again. Same response- we get expedited through.

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Good suggestion, Lars.

Staying organized is the best way to get through customs the fastest. They prey on the weak. (disorganized) grin.gif

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I'm surprised that works that well. The questions serve more than just to obtain information. How you react to the questions can say a lot more than the actual answers you give. Anyone can claim they are within legal limits but a good officer can recognize a lie easier by verbal questioning than by reading it on a piece of paper.

Bob

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BobT - I wouldn't say it if it didn't work just that way. I don't take any credit for it though. I know a guy who crosses all the time and he gave away this secret to me years ago. I've been using it at Intl Falls. You better just make darn sure your list is right. I leave a bunch of open spots on the excel printout to hand write additional items. At the top of the document I write where we are going, names of travelers in party, destination. I try to get it as close to a customs form as possible. It's what I do anyway for what it's worth.

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Do not try to sneak anything back to US. They will scan your whole boat!

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Quote:

Anyone.

Quote:

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

2 questions:

1 Is admission with of an individual with a DUI at the discrestion of the border official or is it a firm policy of inadmission?

2 How long does it take to process a request for rehabilitation?

Thanks.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Thanks again.


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No idea on how long it takes to process... I would imagine they have policies on admission vs in admission... just got back from Canada yesterday and they checked both drivers license and birth certificate at International Falls.... which is the same as the Pembina crossing earlier this year.

marine_man

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I think it's been pretty standard for them to check ID's and birth certificates at I'Falls/FF. When we went, we had three vehicles and each one was asked for ID and birth certificates, along with all the other rigs we saw cross. I think they pretty much want to make sure that you are who your ID shows. The gal that we had at the checkpoint never ran our ID's and asked the standard questions. She even joked around a bit with my niece in my sister and bro-in-laws vehicle, asking who the boss of the family was (my niece of course!). grin.gif

That's not to say they won't run an ID though. Just sharing our experience.

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We just went through Grand Portage/Pigeon River last week.

Were just asked a few questions going into Canada - no documents at all. Maybe took 45 seconds.

Coming back on Monday the US side just asked for Driv Lic's and were were gone in less than 2 minutes. Would have been faster if it weren't for a tour bus ahead of us.

Just my experiences. Fishing was good at Dog Lake, too!!!

DD

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I had a DUI about 25 years ago and haven't even had a parking ticket since then. I am guessing I won't have a problem if my license is scanned. I haven't gone to Canada for about 5 years because of this and I used to go every fall. I have wanted to take my son there for a long time. confused.gif

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We have two guys in our group with DUIs and I have become somewhat familiar with the policies. We have had our licenses taken each of the last two years but they have not scanned them or said anything to us.

Since yours is older than 10 years you should be fine. The link below will be good reading for you.

http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/pdf/kits/guides/5312E.PDF

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I wasn't counting right. It was 17 years ago. The last time I was in Canada the lodge had 6 guys coming in to hunt bear and two of them were turned back due to DUIs. The owner of the lodge was angry because their laws cost him 1/3 of his bear hunting business. Thanks. Maybe I'll go again next fall.

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Hemlock,

We had a last minute trip we won and am going to Souix Narrows. One member of our planned group has a DUI 7 years ago and another member has a 5th Degree Assualt. I know that the DUI will be a problem, but do you know on the assault? It's a misdemeanor here, but the laws are different there. I spoke with Immigrantion about the DUI, but not the assault. They said it takes minimum of 8 weeks. Thanks for the help.

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Quote:

The owner of the lodge was angry because their laws cost him 1/3 of his bear hunting business. Thanks. Maybe I'll go again next fall.


True but at the same time people heading into Canada have the responsibility to know that they will be permitted in. Everyone needs to remember you are going into a different country you are just crossing a state line. Canada has much different rules but they are their rules and when we go into their country we must abide by them.

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I know what ya mean. That's the reason I have been asking questions. I heard that if your DUI is over ten years old, you are considered as rehabilitated. Then later on I heard that they had done away with that and you were an undesirable no matter how long it has been. I realize that their laws are different and I also realize that I screwed up and paid for my mistake in the USA and I'm not about to pay for it the second time. My thoughts are that if I am an undesirable in Canada, there is always northern minnesota. Heck, all I want to do is take my son on a fishing trip where the scenery is different from South Dakota. I haven't been able to do this before now.

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If you read through this thread from the beginning it appears that after 10 years you're allowed to cross.

You should be in good shape.

marine_man

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I guess I know only one way to find out. I'll have to give it a shot next year.

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Or you could call the proper authorities at the border (Hemlock's got the numbers posted on page 1) and ask them...

Good Luck!

marine_man

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