Completing your application — Police certificate (if applicable)
Depending on your citizenship, you may have to provide a police certificate from your country of citizenship. Citizens from the following countries are exempt from the requirement unless they have a criminal record:
You may need to provide one or more police certificates if any of these situations apply to you:
- You’re a citizen of a country not listed above.
- You answered “Yes” to a question about a criminal offence or arrest, even though you’re a citizen of a country not required to provide a police certificate. In this particular case, a police certificate is one of the required documents you must provide.
- You stated you lived in a foreign country for more than 6 months since the age of 18. Even without a police certificate request, we recommend you provide the document anyway.
If you’re a citizen of a country for which a police certificate is required
Most Working Holiday applicants must provide a police certificate from their country of citizenship. If you lived in another country for more than six months since the age of 18, you will also need to provide a police certificate from that country. All police certificates must be in a single document.
If you must provide a police certificate because you have a criminal record
If you answered “Yes” to the question below, you have to provide a police certificate.
In this case, it’s also very likely you’ll have to provide relevant court documents and legal paperwork regarding your case.
If you lived in a foreign country for more than six months since the age of 18, you must apply for a police certificate from that foreign country. If you need a police certificate from Canada, read this.
Getting the right police certificate document
Check the How to get a police certificate page listing all the countries and names of the exact document required, as well as the instructions and local contact information to help you with the process. For instance, Australians must provide an Australian National Police Certificate — Standard Disclosure — name check only (issued by the Australian Federal Police), a Traffic History (for residents of Queensland only) and a Full-Licence History Search (for residents of Victoria only) while citizens from Hong Kong must provide a “Certificate of No Criminal Conviction (CNCC)”.
If a police certificate is required, upload it with the other supporting documents.
You may have to pay a (sometimes hefty) fee to apply for a police certificate. Consider this:
- If the application process is free, request the police certificate as soon as possible (you have nothing to lose!)
- If there’s a fee, it’s probably best to look into the process but wait until you receive an Invitation to Apply to get started.
This is especially true for Working Holiday candidates who may not get an Invitation to Apply—don’t waste money on it!
This is what IRCC says in Learn more about police certificates:
- If you need a police certificate from a country or territory and are currently living there, or received the police certificate before leaving, the police certificate must be issued within six months before you apply.
- If you need a police certificate from a country or territory and have lived there in the past, the police certificate must be issued after you last lived in that country or territory.
This is rather convenient when you need a police certificate from a country where you lived in the past. For instance, if you receive an Invitation to Apply for a Working Holiday work permit six months from now, the police certificate will be valid no matter when it was issued.
Police certificates not in English or French
If the police certificate isn’t in French or English, you must provide the original certificate AND a translation done by a certified translator.
Merging several police certificates for submission
If you need to provide several documents (i.e., several police certificates or a police certificate and a certified translation), make sure to merge the documents into a single PDF file for upload. You can’t upload more than one document. If you try, the second document will replace the first one (which will be considered a missing document).
Main articles about the WHV to Canada
Step-By-Step Guide to International Experience Canada Work Permits
Introduction to the Canada Working Holiday permit
Guide to Working Holiday in Canada (free download)
16 Good Reasons to Apply for a Working Holiday Visa
Globe WHV insurance policy highlights
The duration of your insurance coverage directly impacts your WHV
15 Tips for a Successful WHV Experience
The Working Holiday Visa Adventure as a Solo Traveller