Replacing lost cards and documents: What to do when you lose your . . .

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Losing important documents and cards is one of the most disheartening experiences anyone could ever have. Whether lost, damaged, or stolen, you would have to go through the process of replacing them. This can be tedious, especially if you don’t know what to do. Also, you will need to act quickly to protect your information or prevent another person from using your cards or documents fraudulently.

No worries! We have prepared this guide to help you out. But a quick note. If your cards or documents were stolen, remember to contact the police and file a report. This may not ensure that you will get them back but you will have a formal record in instances of identity theft. Reporting the theft will also help the police track crime trends. This kind of information helps the police force in preventing similar thefts or frauds from happening again.

What to do when you lose your . . .

Debit card or credit card

  1. Call your bank to cancel your card/s right away. If you have an online account, check to see if you can lock your card from the app.
  2. You can report it via email but calling would be faster. However, it’s a good idea to write an email after calling so that you’ll have written proof in case unauthorized charges are made on your account.
  3. Have the following information ready before you call or write:
    • Your account number (check your previous bank statements).
    • The exact date you lost your card/s.
    • Date and amount of your last purchase if you remember.
  4. Request for a replacement.
  5. Your new bank cards will be sent to you in around 3-10 business days.

In cases where thieves guessed your PIN and used your card, you may need to provide your bank an affidavit that says you did not make or authorize the fraudulent transactions. Remember to always examine your bank statements, especially a few months after the loss of your card. Check all purchases to make sure that there are no unauthorized ones. Contact credit bureaus Equifax Canada or TransUnion to have fraud alerts placed on your credit report. This prevents fraudulent charges from affecting your credit score.


If you’re a Permanent Resident and you lose your passport:

  1. Contact your home country’s embassy or local consular corps.
  2. Embassies/consulates will each have different requirements, but they will generally need identifying and supporting documents like a birth certificate and other records. They may also require an affidavit of loss.
  3. If you need to travel immediately and need an ID, you may be eligible to apply for a travel document in Canada.

PR Card

If you lost your Permanent Resident card or if you need to update or renew it (it is recommended that you renew your PR card nine months before it expires):

  1. If you are outside Canada, you can apply for a Permanent resident travel document to travel back to Canada. The Permanent resident travel document is valid for one single entry. You are expected to apply for a PR card once you resume residence in Canada.
  2. Get the application package and follow the guide. Pay the fee ($50) and submit your application.
  3. If you are in Canada, complete this web form.
    • Once on the page, click Tell us more.
    • Below the box, you will be asked if you have submitted an application. Choose No and then click Go to web form.
    • Choose Permanent Resident card and Renewal and replacement.
    • Fill out the form.
  4. Proceed to the Application. Get the application package.
  5. Read the guide and fill out the forms.
  6. Gather all the required documents.
  7. Download the photograph specifications for the required photo.
  8. Pay your application fees ($50) online. You will need a credit or debit card.
  9. Submit your application. Current processing time is 97 days.

For more details, go to Apply for, renew or replace a PR card – About the process.

Driver’s Licence

  1. If your driver’s licence was stolen, report it to the police. Make sure to get a police incident number.
  2. There will be no replacement cost if you provide this number.
  3. If you lost your card, you will need to pay a $10 replacement charge ($15 for an Enhanced Driver’s Licence).
  4. Go to the nearest Autopac agent or Service Centre.
  5. Have your photo taken. Bring identification. This could be your:
    • Birth certificate
    • Vehicle registration card
    • Manitoba Health card
    • Citizenship card, or
    • Passport
  6. A temporary paper licence will be issued to you on the same day.
  7. The permanent driver’s licence card will be mailed to you in 10-12 days.

For more information, go to: Manitoba Public Insurance.


First of all, don’t put your Social Insurance Number (SIN) in your wallet or with you. Keep it in a safe place. There will be limited instances when you would need to provide it anyway. There are two cases when you may need to request for your SIN:

  • If your SIN letter was stolen (and/or you couldn’t remember it). In this case, your SIN number will be the same. To know your SIN, check your income tax return or request for a SIN confirmation.
  • If there is proof that your SIN was used fraudulently.

You will need to amend your SIN if you are legally changing your name (due to marriage or other circumstances) or if you are changing your gender designation.

To apply:

  1. Go to any Service Canada office. If you can’t apply in person, read this: Applying by mail.
  2. Provide a valid primary document that provides your identity and legal status in Canada.
  3. If the name in the primary document is different from the name you are currently using, you will need to present supporting documents.
  4. All documents have to be originals and in English or French.
  5. You will get your SIN on the same day. It is free of charge.

Health Card

If you lost it or you need to update it because of new information (new address, a marriage, birth, adoption, death, divorce, legal separation), you need to:

  1. Call or go to the Manitoba Health office at Carlton Street. You can also go online.
  2. If you are requesting for the replacement card in person, bring an identification card with you (for example a driver’s licence, PR card, or passport). You will receive the Health Card on the same day.
  3. If requesting by phone, have your personal information ready. The card will by mailed and reach you within 5-7 working days.
  4. If online, fill out the eForm.

Contact the Manitoba Health Insured Benefits Branch if you have more questions.

Sources: Stolen wallet? What to do when thieves get your cards and PIN, Erica Alini, Global News; What to do when your credit card is lost or stolen, Latoya Irby, the Balance; Health, Seniors and Active Living; Residents Portal, Replacing lost identification cards; Manitoba Public Insurance. Retrieved on August 23, 2018.

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Community Resources

Take extra precautions against identity theft. Go to Tips for reducing the risk of identity theft from the Manitoba Government site.

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