Convicted For Cannabis Possession? There Is A New Pardon System

May 19, 2022

Convicted For Cannabis Possession? There Is A New Pardon System

Criminal records, even for cannabis possession, can create barriers to accessing employment, housing and education programs. Keeping this in mind, the Canadian government passed legislation for a free and quick way to apply for pardons for simple cannabis possession almost two years ago.

The pardon can be applied for using an online system. Once the pardon is accepted barriers to employment, housing, travel and volunteering opportunities for people who were convicted of simple possession before recreational cannabis use was made legal will be removed.

This legislation has been implemented in an attempt to work towards removing the stigma of a criminal record for people who have shown themselves to be law-abiding citizens.

Helping them with the pardon and getting rid of their criminal record will allow the individuals to be a part of the community and participate in meaningful community-driven activities. This will also help them secure good and stable jobs and become fully contributing members of society.

However, if you are still not sure about the process of applying for a pardon and the technicalities of the process, hire a certified criminal defence lawyer to help you.

Why Apply For A Pardon?

Being charged with a drug offence can have serious life-changing consequences. A conviction could result in fines, probation, house arrest, or jail, and a criminal record. Additionally, you may not be allowed to travel to the United States or other parts of the world. A conviction may also limit your ability to work.

Hence, it is imperative you apply for a pardon as soon as possible.

The defence team at Slaferek Law has extensive experience defending people charged with drug offences including trafficking, possession and importation.

The Difference Between Expungement And A Pardon

A pardon or a record suspension is provided to remove barriers to employment, housing, travel and volunteering opportunities for people who were convicted. However, expungement, on the other hand, is provided in extraordinary circumstances. In cases where the criminalization of an activity was historically unjust, the crown considers expungement.

In case of record suspension, the criminal record is kept separate and is disclosed under very specific circumstances. However, in an expungement, federal records of that conviction are destroyed or removed.

Conditions Of This Pardon

The pardon is only available to individuals who were convicted of ‘Simple Possession’ of Cannabis. This refers to possession of 30 grams of Cannabis or less.

If you were convicted of possessing a higher amount of Cannabis, a different course of action will have to be taken for a record suspension. For this, you will have to hire a criminal defence lawyer.

Does This Pardon Help In Removing Travel Restrictions?

Yes, the pardon does lift travel-related barriers since the information is withheld during routine background checks. This includes at border crossings.

However, in the case that the information of your conviction was already received by U.S. border guards and stored on their database prior to the pardon, you will not be allowed to travel.

Hence, the pardon does not guarantee Canadians with pot convictions the ability to travel to the U.S and other countries where Cannabis possession is illegal.


Whether you have been convicted of simple possession of Cannabis or for any other drug offence, our team of experienced criminal defence lawyers can help you get out of this quicksand.

Let Us Help You

Slaferek lawyers are highly proficient at strategizing effective defence strategies that can lead to case dismissal, reduced charges, reduced penalties, and more. To get in touch with us today, click here . Our expertise lies in criminal cases and DUI cases.

If you are scrambling with charges or are looking for a good criminal defence lawyer to help you fight your case, our team of trained lawyers can help you build a strong case. We have successfully closed hundreds of cases pertaining to murder, DUI, financial fraud and more.

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Contacting Darin H. Slaferek

We specialize in criminal law, delivering ethical, effective, and efficient legal solutions that prioritize the best interests of our clients.