British High Commissioner to Canada
We are the principal UK diplomatic post in Canada. Along with consulates general in Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, and Calgary, we are responsible for all aspects of the bilateral relationship with Canada.
We work closely with the Canadian government and partners across the country to develop and maintain a wide range of substantive partnerships of real value to both countries. These partnerships cover business, defence, climate change, science and innovation, education, and culture. We also support the large number of British nationals who visit or live in Canada.
Services for British nationals
If you’re in Canada and you urgently need help (eg if you’ve been attacked, arrested or lost your passport), call +1 613 237 1530. If you’re in the UK and concerned about a British national in Canada, call 020 7008 1500.
Get or renew a passport
The British High Commission can’t help with passport enquiries. Contact Her Majesty’s Passport Office if you need help.
Get an emergency travel document
You can apply for an emergency travel document (ETD) if you’re abroad and your passport has been lost or stolen, damaged or expired, and you can’t get a new or replacement passport in time to travel.
If you’re due to travel in the next 24 hours, contact us as soon as possible. Otherwise, make an appointment at our high commission in Ottawa. Call us before making an appointment if you’ve never applied for a British passport before or if you’re applying for a child under the age of 16.
Travel advice: for information and advice on travelling to Canada, see travel advice for Canada.
Get a visa
The British High Commission can’t help with visa enquiries.
If you’re not a British national, you may need a visa to travel to the UK. Check if you need a UK visa.
If you’re a British national travelling abroad and need to apply for a visa to visit a particular country or check if you need a visa, see the entry requirements on our foreign travel advice for the country you want to visit.
For more information on visas, see UK visas and immigration.
Marriage and civil partnerships
We don’t issue certificates of no impediment, affirmations or affidavits of marital status. We also don’t perform marriages or civil partnerships for British nationals. For further information on getting married in Canada, see getting married abroad.
Register a birth or death
If the death occurred in Canada and you’re still in the country, contact us. If you’re in the UK and hear of the death of a relative from a third party, you should contact the Foreign and Commonwealth Office on 020 7008 1500.
List of funeral directors
The Canada Funerals page or Funeral Home Directory may be able to help you with funeral service arrangements. There is a large number of funeral directors in Canada and they will all use English as their main language though French is also common in Quebec.
Medical facilities and practitioners
In any major city in Canada there are a number of pharmacies offering commonly used medication and available advice from pharmacists. There are also large numbers of hospitals and urgent care locations available throughout Canada. Visit this guide to find a hospital in your area of interest. A general guide to medical services in Canada can be accessed under the Health section of our Travel Advice page.
Support if you’ve been arrested
We’ll do all we can to contact you within 24 hours of being told that you’ve been detained or arrested, and will give you a prisoner pack with information for British prisoners in Canada. We cannot get you out of prison, prevent the local authorities from deporting you after your prison sentence, or interfere in criminal or civil court proceedings.
Notarial and documentary services
See the full list of notarial and documentary services we provide.
The British High Commission in Ottawa does not provide legalisation services. Read our notarial and documentary services page for more information on legalisation.
Ask the UK government to get a UK document legalised (certified as genuine).
List of lawyers and interpreters
Use our list of English speaking lawyers and interpreters if you need help with official transactions in Canada. Please note that inclusion in this list does not constitute official endorsement by the British High Commission or the UK government.
How else we can help
In addition to the services listed above we can also:
- provide information about transferring funds
- provide appropriate help if you have suffered rape or serious assault, are a victim of other crime, or are in hospital
- help people with mental illness
- offer support and help in a range of other cases, such as child abductions, missing people and kidnapping
- contact family or friends for you if you want
- make special arrangements in cases of terrorism, civil disturbances or natural disasters or other crises abroad
For more information on the services we can provide, see Support for British nationals abroad: A guide.
General information on living in Canada.
What the high commission cannot do for you
Although we try to help British nationals in a wide range of situations, we cannot:
- help you enter a country, for example, if you don’t have a visa or your passport is not valid
- give you legal advice, investigate crimes or carry out searches for missing people, although we can give you details of people who may be able to help you in these cases, such as English-speaking lawyers.
- get you better treatment in hospital or prison than is given to local people
- pay any bills or give you money (in very exceptional circumstances we may lend you some money from public funds, which you’ll have to pay back)
- make travel arrangements for you, or find you work or accommodation
- make business arrangements on your behalf
We charge fees for some of our services. See the full list of consular fees in Canada.